How not to go viral…

deer day 044My fingertips are frozen blue,
I’m boiled and casting clothing.
Were I a man, it would be ‘flu…
I read reports with loathing
That womankind copes better
Going viral in this manner,
And while my nose gets wetter
I’m afraid I have a spanner
To cast right into this fallacy
Designed by persons nameless…
And promulgated callously…
That man-flu should be blameless.

I have a choice of two, I feel,
On whom to point the finger…
One worked to keep an even keel,
The other didn’t linger
Long enough for me to blame him
(Though with motherly discretion
I don’t think that I need name him –
And the bug made no impression.)

While many writers dream of going viral for a day…
This isn’t how to do it… and that’s all I have to say.

deer day 073I wish to debunk a myth. Men are not less able to cope with flu than women. I know this first hand. One of them gave me this and, of the two most likely candidates, one carried on heroically in spite of it all while the other went out on his bike… Me, I currently hover somewhere between gelid and boiled, unable to get either brain or extremities warmed up and moving.

My boss just laughed at my misery as I helped him get ready for that bike ride. He is able to laugh with a modicum of impunity, being also my son. My son, however, may think himself lucky my throat is too swollen to retaliate…

I managed to croak that he should be gentle with me…I’m fragile…  It didn’t work.

Honestly, when you are trying to be thoroughly miserable it helps if people play along…

I had no such luck, either with him or the dog, whose idea of being helpful was to bring me a stream of cold, wet tennis balls to throw. All I want to do is sleep, but there is no chance of that when she needs to go out. So I tap away in an effort to stay awake and encourage blood flow to the fingertips… and if what comes out is below par, for once I have an excuse. My brain’s not working.

The trouble with this whole scenario is that you don’t actually get to enjoy any of the perks… the early nights where you can’t actually sleep, the feet-up time because you have no choice, the cat-nap instead of the housework… there is, as far as I can see, no benefit to being ill when you feel ill.

I have come to the conclusion that we have the whole thing back to front and we should make a point of being nice to ourselves before we have no choice in the matter. So once I’ve stopped aching and feeling sorry for myself, I may take a leaf out of Samuel Goldwyn’s book, put my feet up and say I shall be laid up with intentional flu.

deer day 038Colleen’s #WQW & #Ronovan’s BeWoW.

About Sue Vincent

Sue Vincent is a Yorkshire-born writer and one of the Directors of The Silent Eye, a modern Mystery School. She writes alone and with Stuart France, exploring ancient myths, the mysterious landscape of Albion and the inner journey of the soul. Find out more at France and Vincent. She is owned by a small dog who also blogs. Follow her at and on Twitter @SCVincent. Find her books on Goodreads and follow her on Amazon worldwide to find out about new releases and offers. Email:
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100 Responses to How not to go viral…

  1. When I was young, we used to say you should never take time off from work when you are sick. You should go to work sick, because everyone will wish you had stayed home, so when you stay home because you just want some time off, everyone assumes you must be DESPERATELY ILL because look how sick you were when you came to work? I don’t suppose that’s making you feel any better. So. Chicken soup? Feel better.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Darcy says:

    Awww. Get well soon!


  3. Chicken Soup, lots of fluids – especially electrolyte drinks (Gatorade) lots of hot tea with a large dollop of honey, stay warm, sleep a lot. High, warm humidity. If you don’t have a humidifier, simmer a pot of water with lemon in and lean over it with a towel over your head. Breath deeply! I love horehound drops for sore throat. I grew horehound in my garden, but didn’t get enough for lozenges – I will plant more next year.
    Feel better!!


  4. Hope you’re feeling better soon! 😀


  5. I hope you are soon feeling better Sue. I remember one time at boarding school. Many of the other children had been taken ill with some horrible bug and where laid up in bed. However I did not appear to have contracted it and was told I had to get up and attend lessons which, in point of fact I was quite pleased about, congratulating myself on being one of the few pupils who haden’t become ill. Soon after getting up I was violently ill and joined my peers in bed! Kevin


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  7. Ritu says:

    Oh no Sue! Get well soon… Man flu is the worst!!! 😉


  8. 😄 well if that’s your standard of writing when you are ill and claim your brain is not working… I’m quietly impressed. Get well soon 💐


  9. jenanita01 says:

    I seem to be in the same boat, Sue. But have no clue who gave it to me. My brain refuses to work, despite all my efforts and I’m so miserable half the time.
    I keep saying that ‘this too will pass’ but not bloody quick enough yet!


  10. jenanita01 says:

    Reblogged this on Jaye Marie and commented:
    be better soon, Sue…


  11. Feel better soon! Very true about people not taking care of themselves or relaxing until it’s kind of too late. Fevers don’t help with focusing on reading or TV or anything. Not to mention you can’t leave the house to enjoy good weather. Humans are such strange creatures. As far as the ‘man flu’ thing goes, that kind of drives me nuts. My wife will treat a cold like an exotic disease that will consume the planet if she leaves the bed. I’ll get the same thing and be running around until breathing takes more effort than blinking. Honestly, both of us sound kind of stupid in those scenarios.


  12. TanGental says:

    You’re ill and you compose that poem? Sorry, but that’s rubbing our (inadequate) noses in it, Sue. This house lives by the stereotype: women have a snuffle, children have a cold and the men have ebola. Loved the Goldwyn quote: my fav is ‘we’ve all passed a lot of water since then…’


  13. Oh I hope you are soon feeling better Sue. I have had that virus lately and it is pretty nasty.


  14. I do hope you are feeling better soon. My Alex is home sick today with a fever. Roasted a chicken the other day, so I’ll be making soup. Wish you lived closer and I’d come over with a bowl of it for you ❤


  15. Your brain on “sick mode” works really well, Sue. Take care and feel better soon. ☺


  16. “Laid up with intentional flu…” I like the sound of that, Sue. I may try it out but I doubt it would be very successful for me as I watch the dishes piling up in the kitchen and the washing piling up…you get the picture. Nice idea though.

    Get well soon!


  17. I hope you feel better soon, Sue. Our bodies have a way of forcing rest on us if we haven’t been paying enough attention. And men are less able to cope with flu – my husband is a perfect example of flu-helplessness. 😀


  18. socialbridge says:

    Hope you’re feeling more like yourself, Sue. All I could think of reading this was : Sons and Mothers!!!


  19. dgkaye says:

    Get well soon Sue, and in the meantime, feet up, tea and broth, and happy reading. 🙂


  20. Eliza Waters says:

    Oh, dear, I hope this passes quickly! Be well!


  21. Widdershins says:

    May all your viruses (viri?) be short-lived ones. Take care. 🙂


  22. reocochran says:

    Hope you are healing and feeling much better, Sue. ♡


  23. Ali Isaac says:

    Oh no! Hope youre better soon. Xxx


  24. Hope you get well soon, Sue. I know how you feel. I not only can’t afford to get sick, I have to be sure to keep it to myself if I do. My husband is 85 and already down with a broken hip, and his caregiver needs to take care of him. I couldn’t stand the guilt.


  25. Wow… if this is your writing when you don’t feel well! Sue, you are simply amazing. I loved your prose. The words made me smile. Darn men. They get everything easier don’t they? LOL! ❤


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  28. dorne whale says:

    Hope you feel better soon Sue. Don’t want to be gloomy, but I’ve had this stupid thing for about a month now. It goes and then comes back and then goes again…and so on. It gives value for money! It’s woman flu!


  29. Hope you’re feeling fighting fight soon Sue, and do put your feet up when you’re well again a bit of pampering never goes amiss.


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