Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Tastes Better: Says so on the box

Norma, having one of his *manstrel* cramps

So the temperature outside if frightening for us soft-bellied Marylanders, and I am offended that after five years my stout-hearted Midwestern blood has become accustomed to easy winters.

In the midst of this, Cookie caught a cold.

And then the cold turned out to be the flu.

Honestly, its the first time I have puked because I was coughing so hard.  Nasty business.  And I had the flu shot, too.

Today, I ventured out for more cough syrup because the husband called from work with an "I tink I got," sniff, "wud you have," hack, hack, hack.

So now we both are down with it.   And when we get sick, its a bit of schizo thing because we both get man flu-ish, but we both turn into bears that just want to be left alone.  The "Honey...I need a box of tissues!" is joined with "I just want to be alone," upon delivery of said tissues.

Dinner is reduced to whatever soup you can make for yourself and walking the dogs in the afternoon becomes a thing that both of us wants to do, but only because it means that someone else has to walk them in the morning.  And that person isn't the one who walked them in the afternoon when it was light outside and not nearly as bitter cold.

Anyhow, since I have been ingesting the legacy meds from last cold and flu season, I went out in search of cough syrup because the husband is going to need something.  And I needed to get out of the house and get the stink blown off of me.

So I went to a big, Big, BIG national chain store that is adored by the bourgeoisie, and as I am walking down the aisles of syrups and tonics for mitigating what Americans call the "crud", one of their helpful employees asked if they could help, and I said no.  And yet she persevered and asked if I had considered their store brand "which is just as good as the national brands we carry."

God love that simple child.  Store brands are never the same.  You may think so, but you are wrong.

You can buy Busch Beer, and know what you are getting, or you can buy generic beer in a white can with black lettering and wonder what you are getting.  When I am getting ripped off, I want to know who is ripping me off.

Besides, that "Robitussin" on the box makes me feel confident and reminds me that I can still afford name brands.

So she hands me their version of the type of cough syrup they carry, in a box that kinda of looks like the leading brand, but just different enough that you know its the copycat brand and I notice that it has one of those "Getcha Attention" graphics that they use to draw your attention away from the smaller size that they charge you just as much for, or announces that the product is in some way improved (and it never really is) which reads:

"Tastes Better!"

Better than what?   I mean I get "Better Tasting", which means it tastes better than it used to, but "Tastes Better" kind of opens up the door of ambiguity.

Are you old enough to remember this crap?

The coal tar taste that Vicks Formula 44 used to taste like?

Having a bar of Life Bouy soap in your mouth?

Analingus? (Note: Cookie is not a crack snacker)

So I ask the sweet young help one, staring at me, pride welling up in heart for her employers brand and asked: "Just what does this taste better than?"

"The other stuff."

Well, duh.

I had that coming.

And had I been in a non-flulike stupor I would never ask such a stupid question.   How would this sweet young thing know what ass tasted like?

Anyhow, I thanked her, she said "no problem" (and don't get me started on that) watched her bop away, feeling accomplished, then put that store brand crap back and bought the named brand crap that tastes like medicine only to come home and find my husband - home from work, with a red nose from cheap office supply store brand facial tissue - and he looks at what I have hunted and gathered and says: "Why didn't you just get the liqui-gels?"

"They have it in a pill form?"

Well, fuck for fuck sake.

Anyhow, if this "flu" I am on runs its expected course, expect temperatures in the 100-degree range for another day or so and then a recovery by the weekend.

Till then I will have watery eyes, a productive cough and drink plenty of fluids.  I doubt that at this point I will have high fever and hallucinations.  They always make for good copy.


  1. "And I needed to get out of the house and get the stink blown off of me." - my grandmom used to say that all the time! in the spring: "open up the windows and let the stink out!"

    vicks 44 and life buoy - remember them well. I didn't eat the soap though. "crack snacker" - not me either. as opposed to a "snack cracker" - yes please.

  2. I feel for you, Cookie but "crack snacker" has me cracking up.

  3. Feel better! It is amazing how miserable the flu can make one feel. I had completely forgotten about Vick's Formula 44. Thanks for the memory.