Friday, August 07, 2009

My Dad Gave Me Herpes

So I had this really disturbing Twitter exchange with Chris O:

Me: Can I actually die from a canker sore? I think it might be killing me. That, or the fact that it's pinched in the crack between my teeth

Chris: @zipbagofbones Aren't canker sores a form of herpes? Not to give you something else to stress about but...

Me: @mycatatemybrain I googled it and found that in fact, canker sores are ulcers, not herpes. My cold sores, however, are herpes. Thanks Dad.

Me again: mycatatemybrain I should explain that my dad gave me herpes but not in an incestual kind of way just in the appropriate father/daughter way

OHMYGOD I'm making this worse: @mycatatemybrain cold sore herpes, not genital herpes. THOSE I got from Obama.

And I realized that not only is "incestual" not a word, but I basically just accused my own father of incest, which is what everyone is going to assume because they know I grew up in the Ozarks, and now I feel like I should explain that my father didn't molest me, he just kissed me when he was covered in herpes. Or maybe he shared my fork. Or possibly he licked an envelope and then left it laying around and then I licked the same envelope later on and I caught herpes via envelope glue. It was the 80s. You know, before stickers were invented. Back when you even had to lick STAMPS, people. We didn't know as much about herpes then as we do now.

And now I realize that I just implicated my father in a child-labor, envelope-sealing ring. So in order to defend my dad's honor, I'm going to play in the Spin Cycle today, and I'm going to re-post this entry about my herpes.** You're welcome, Dad.

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Ok, well Wendi made the mistake of asking what I do with chapstick, what could I possibly do that makes me happy? Then she went and tried to renig, something about how she didn't really want to know or something, but I know the truth. She is DYING to hear the sordid details. I've been living with this secret for a long time now, and it's time to get it off my chest. I was begging for help, you see, when I listed chapstick on my list of Happy Things. I was hoping someone would go on ahead and call me out on that one, so I wouldn't have to live in secret shame any longer. Well, thank you Wendi Adams, for liberating my madness, as it were.

You really wanna know? I mean REALLY? If not, click away from the page now. Before it's too late. The image of the following words will forever be burned upon your subconscious mind and you'll dream nightmarey dreams in which giant chapstick tubes chase and devour you for the rest of your days on this earth.

What do I do with chapstick that makes me so damn happy?

I put it on my lips.

SHOCKED SILENCE AND GASPING FOR BREATH AND RETCHING OF BREAKFASTS!

Yeah, ok. Maybe it's not THAT big of a deal since, you know, it was made for lips and stuff. But honestly, I LOVE it. I HEART it. I would DIE without it. I have...let's see...two chapsticks in my living room, one by my bed (for midnight chapstick emergencies), two in my bathroom, two in my purse, one in my car, and one by my desk at work. OH and one in my glove box (so that's two in my car). And this, my friends, is me running dangerously low on chapstick.

Now, when I say "chapstick", I do not in fact mean "Chapstick". I'm from Arkansas guys, I say "Coke" when referring to any carbonated beverage, I say "Kleenex" when I really mean tissue produced for the picking and wiping of noses, I say "hooker" when I mean female humans. So when I say chapstick, I mean sticks of goo made for smearing across lips to provide moisture retention and miniscule UV ray protection. I do not discriminate by branding. WITH ONE EXCEPTION: Carmex.

Now you Carmex executives, don't get all in a tizzy and start slapping slander suits on me and whatnot. I'm sure that in the hands of your average consumer, Carmex is a perfectly delightful product which provides soothing relief to lips across the globe. In the hands of an addict, such as myself, Carmex was like a loaded gun. A loaded gun full of pain and suffering and knashing of teeth. They claim it is not addictive, that no ingredient in their product causes addiction, and that the FDA approves their ingredients and all that. See here for info. But I tell you man, once I started down that path, I was hooked like a hooky hooker with hooks in her. I couldn't go an hour without applying it, or my lips would chafe and crack and, yes, even bleed.

I started using Carmex as a kid (at the recommendation of my pediatrician, no less) for the purpose of assisting my poor mouth in recovering from cold sores. I'm like some kind of cold sore breeding ground. I get them all the fucking time. As in, I just had one last week and it finally went away and this morning I woke up with two more. I get them when I'm stressed, ovulating (or apparently when I'm undergoing the endless D&C period), sunburned, sick, or when the weather changes drascically in any direction. I'm pretty sure I can blame my dad for this, who also gets them frequently, so don't start in with the STD lecture or anything. Mouth herpes? Check. Genital herpes? HOLY CHRIST NO! (Although, is it supposed to burn when you pee?)

For those of you who suffer from cold sores, you know they are hard to prevent, impossible to cure, and take forever to get rid of. I seem to have the breeding variety as well. Once, I had so many on both my lips that I looked like Bubba from Forrest Gump. I swear to god, no joke. I went to the hospital that time. I took L-lysine supplements as a kid. I've taken Rx meds for genital herpes to prevent them. I've tried all the topical products known to man. Nothing stops them, and honestly nothing gets rid of them any faster. In recent years, I've been poking them with a sterilized pin when they get all full of stuff, and keeping rubbing alcohol on them with a cotton ball to dry them out. At least then they are not quite as smack-you-in-the-face noticible. Everything else is expensive and a total waste of money.

Anyhow, Carmex felt great on my ailing lips...but then I had to use it all of the time.. I couldn't switch from Carmex to regular chapstick without suffering. Eventually, I weaned myself off the hard stuff. Chapstick is like my methodone folks. Clearly I still have addiction issues. I have to have the stuff coating my lips at all times of the day or they hurt. I know I should cut back, I have a family to think about. No, wait. No family. But still, for my very own good. I need to stop the madness.

I think this is what Metallica meant when they wrote Master of Puppets.

**So I just re-read this post and realized it's got almost nothing to do with my dad so it didn't really defend his honor. Especially when paired with the post about how he likes to have sex when I'm in the room. You'll just have to trust me, he's awesome. And not at all incestual.