[photopress:Sneezing_409.jpg,thumb,pp_style]By David Ellis
Every four years my allergies reappear, just like the Olympics. They used to be twice a year, just like Conference. But now I’ve built up immunity to whatever foreign objects roam this valley (tourists?). For some reason the fourth year still beats me.
Southern Nevada was meant to be a safe haven from the ill effects of pollen because it’s the desert people, we don’t have a lot of green! But then people decided to plant fruitless mulberry trees. Why? I guess it’s because they don’t like fruit. Seriously, why would you plant a tree that advertises that it doesn’t produce fruit? Do you hate fruit that much?
And why does this tree need pollen then?
The important question is, what is pollen and why are trees jerks? These are questions not easily answered. I could give you the scientific reason for pollen but it’s kind of gross and this is a family magazine. So here’s my non-gross explanation. Pollen is like business cards for trees. The trees want everyone to know them but they can’t move because of the roots. So they wait for a strong gust and then wing a crud-load of these cards into the air to let the wind do their dirty work.
These tiny business cards irritate your nasal passage so much that your eyes feel empathy and start to cry. Your nose then tries to sneeze these cards out while your mouth blabs to passers-by about how bad your allergies are. Glad I dumbed it down for you, huh? These pollens happen seasonally, right at the time when you want to go outside and enjoy the weather.
This year I was hit really hard. First I had a sinus infection. For you non-science types who don’t have a medical degree from Wikipedia, the paranasal sinuses or booger dugout (Dave-apedia) are air-filled spaces, within the bones of the skull and face. Gross.
My sinuses became infected and plugged completely up. I sounded like the kid at camp with a perpetual runny nose. I suffered through this ailment for over a week only to come out of it right when the pollen hit.
I tried all of the medicines, especially the ones that have the cool commercials, ‘cause those really work. Everyone looks so happy, handsome and thin. Plus they have a nicer car than me and whiter teeth.
But alas, their medicines didn’t work. I even tried all of the homeopathic remedies. These are methods people have used for thousands of years, you know the period of time when people lived to the ripe old age of twenty-five.
My favorite is the Neti Pot. I’ve written about this before but I don’t mind bringing it up again, mostly because it involves jamming something up your nose and flushing the gunk out with lightly salted water. This technique really does help though, I must admit. The pollen is so grossed out that a grown man would shove the spout of a mini teapot up his nostril that it leaves in disgust.
Another method to fighting pollen is direct negotiation. Direct the pollen to a larger nose, one that is roomier but still within their budget.
Once they get trapped in that nose it will soon be devalued and then the pollen will be upside down in the payment and can’t afford your nose. If that doesn’t work try punching wildly into the air, you won’t get all of them, but you’ll make examples out of some of them.
Oh, I should have mentioned that I’m not board certified to give out medical advice. So if any of this doesn’t work, well, it’s not my fault. If it does work, please send your co-pay to my office and I’ll see you again in four years.