I got home from Thanksgiving at my moms, and my only dream in the world was to just lay down and sleep a week of my life away, because y’all, I have been sick as FRACK and my body keeps trying to shut down, but I keep trying to make it rally bc HELLO, IT’S THANKSGIVING AND THAT IS LITERALLY A HOLIDAY DEDICATED TO EATING AND EATING AND EATING UNTIL THE SHAME OF YOUR PANTS NOT CLOSING SETS IN, SO YOU NAP UNTIL IT’S TIME TO EAT AGAIN! And dammit, no sickness is going to keep me from that!
So my family gave me whiskey for my throat and codeine for my everything else, and to hopefully end this cough that makes my lungs ache… on top of the antibiotics I’m also taking for maybe-bronchitis, oh, and the over the counter cold medicine I also self-diagnosed. And then we realized what we had done, so somebody supposedly checked on me every few hours to make sure I was still alive. Or so they say…… I have no memory of it because of the whiskey-nyquill-codeine-cocktail I was partaking in.
But I was able to rally and properly eat and feel shame the next day, but by the time the codine-fog cleared and I got home Saturday, my body was all, “Seriously, if you don’t let me finally rest and detox, I swear to God we are going to go full on scurvy just so we can check into the hospital and get some actual rest.”
So I relented and I walked in the door of my house all prepared to lay on the couch and sleep my life away. But then, 2 steps into the door I heard…..
And this was upsetting to my plans, but I am a moderately-responsible homeowner so I walked over to the wall of smoke detectors and alarms and assorted “Something expensive is probably going wrong with your house” alarms and waited to see which one went off. And it turns out it was the Carbon Monoxide detector.
Now, this was appropriately terrifying to me because a few years back my brother almost died from CO poisoning due to some faulty equipment. Actually about once a year or so, the Coast Guard tries to kill my brother in some new way, and the rest of us all learn a fun new lesson about ways we didn’t know you could die, and then live in terror forever.
So this alarm going off freaked me out, but I am an optimist (and I was also very tired), so what I did was I….. I just hit the SILENCE button, and then I went to bed, because…
But then around 3:00am when I was in a dead sleep, I heard it.
And this time I thought, “Huh, maybe that alarm I bought to keep me alive is actually trying to tell me something,” so I got out of bed and dragged my lifeless body into the living room where I had thrown the blasted thing, and I looked at the screen and it just said “END.” And I thought, “Well, THAT is a bit cryptic. Do you mean your end or my end?” So I googled Carbon Monoxide poisoning just to see if I probably already had it, and the internet was all, “Side effects include headaches and dizziness and nausea.” But y’all, I have vertigo, so for me those aren’t really side effects. That is just like an average Tuesday. So I hit the silence button again, because honestly if you want me to be alarmed by side effects, they need to be more drastic. Like blood coming out of my ear. Or the night blindness.
So I went back to sleep, not because I wanted to, but because there was NyQuill involved in the decision making. But then 2 hours later…
So I groggily grabbed my phone and googled First Alert CO Detectors, and it was all, “3 beeps means you’re probably already dead. But 5 beeps just means the unit is dying after 2 years, even though it’s supposed to last 10. Because here at First Alert, F*CK YOU!”
But I wanted to be sure that I wasn’t being slowly murdered by my air, so I sleepily went to Home Depot and bought a new detector, and the new one was all, “This is just normal air, why are you up @ 5:00am? Also, you should close all of these doors because it in 42 degrees in here. This is why you’re sick, dumbass.”
But the beeping on my old terrible unit would not stop, because even though it decided it was too weak to work for the full 10 years, it DID manage to save enough battery life to haunt me with beeps for the rest of my life. So I read the back of the unit, and it said. “You see this little metal prong taped to the back? You have to drive this into the machine’s heart to get it to stop.” So I pulled off the tiny key, and I said a few words of reverent thanks to the tiny machine for keeping me alive these last 2 years, and then I jabbed it into the self-destruct slot.
And thatjust pissed it off!
And the damn thing refused to die! So I pulled it out and tried again, and then the screen just started flashing END-END-END. and THAT felt a bit threatening, if I’m being honest.
So I wrapped the thing in an old shirt to muffle the beeping and I threw it away, but my neighbor could hear it, and she asked me why my trash was beeping, and I was all, “Because it has a demon in it.” But apparently THAT isn’t an okay thing to say to people, so I brought the damn thing back inside.
And I was in the middle of making plans to drive it out to the wilderness and dump it in a river and pray that it wouldn’t conjure up the dark arts and find a way to follow me home….. when I accidentally spilled a tiny drop of cranberry juice on it, and the whole unit short circuited and died. Because apparently cranberry juice is lethal to demonic machinery. I’ve emailed the Pope to get confirmation on this, but that man is notoriously bad at responding to emails.
So I laid the defective machine to rest and then sprinkled holy water around my new Carbon Monoxide detector, in prayer and supplication that this new unit was more immune to the works of Satan than the last.
And that is why……
Boss: “So why are you telling me all this?”
Me: “Because I’d now like to take a sick day, please.”
Boss: “In the future, I don’t need the whole story. You can just say you don’t feel well.”
Me: “I do not feel well.”