Is it possible to poison oneself with a spritz from a 30-year-old bottle of perfume? Can one create their own self-inflicted bioterror attack and suffer the consequences for three straight days of full-body sneezing? I am here to testify that it is not only possible, it just happened to me!
I have been sneezing for three straight days. Sneezing, with the full force of a repulsing body, makes daily tasks impossible to perform because you close your eyes when you sneeze. So, trying to walk or type is an impossibility when you’re spraying the world around you with a fine, but deadly, sinus misting every ten seconds.
I rarely sneeze. I use a neti pot daily. I am careful with my health. Yet, something snared me last week and put me in this sneezing tizzy like no other. At first, I thought I was just having an ordinary pollen exposure and I was reacting to that environmental risk — but I realized we’ve had really high pollen counts in the past and I haven’t been put down like this.
So, the INTJ in me started working in the subconscious and I reckoned back to a moment of discovery that may have been moment zero of my infection. In my regular office Spring cleaning, I found a 30-year-old bottle of men’s cologne my cousin had given me long ago. I wasn’t sure why I had saved a full bottle of expensive cologne — but in the spirit of remembrance and nostalgia — I decided to give myself a few mistings from the bottle to remind me of the good and innocent days of long ago.
Ah! The lemony scent! Oh, the light bouquet of flowers lilted under my tickled nose. And then it happened. I sneezed like I had never sneezed before in my life. Long. Loud. Rafter-shattering.
I instantly remembered why I had never used the cologne. It made me sick then as it had now! Why would I save such a shiny and pristine bottle that held my own death recipe? I quickly washed my face and changed my clothes but, I fear, the omega seed was planted, and I was deep into the alpha bounty with no way out.
I had poisoned myself with nostalgia!
I sneezed a few more times that day, and then I become busy and lost track of the cause and tried to carry on with my life. As the hours passed, and the days became blessed with multiple “Bless You!” offerings from strangers on the street, I now believe I found the cause of my current consternation.
My own memory of reconnection and rebirth sickened me and I haven’t yet stopped paying the price for a few precious scents from the past. Beware of unused gifts from your antiquity! There’s a reason they’ve gone untouched for three decades!