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Man flu – a breakthrough?

April 9, 2014

We have largely stamped out polio and diphtheria, but the truly evil and much more dangerous man flu still stalks the gentlemen of this planet. If it was ailment that afflicted women only, there would have been high-profile campaigns to raise money and awareness of the issue (for instance in the case of breast cancer) but because it descends only upon men, nothing seems to be done.

You may have guessed that the cold I have been battling since setting off for Cyprus last Thursday, has developed and worsened into man flu. The first effect was to postpone the intended lunch yesterday which would have brought together 8 old ex ex-pats from the south of France, to bemoan the weather here in England, discuss the benefits of Currencies Direct and to reminisce about all of those warm nights and splendid lunches the epitomised our little world several years ago.

Despite my whimpering and snuffling, I was dragged from my pit to go to see my dear Aunt Pam who is recovering from a stroke. It was the last opportunity to see her until the beginning of July, so there was no option. Before you begin to get concerned that my germs might contaminate the whole hospital, I must inform you that I was limited to waiting in the hospital courtyard garden and my Aunt arrived in a wheel chair. Of course, it being man flu, women cannot catch it, so no risk of the disease spreading to her. I had been left in the garden with something almost as unpleasant. Banjo, the catastrophic canine who exists in our household under some obscure UN convention or the like, and is owned by her key protector, That Nice Lady Decorator. His presence was deemed of therapeutic value to my dear Aunt, who loves all animals. Whilst I was waiting in the chilly exterior, teeth chattering and nose running, I received a special present from the gobby dog. It was a large helping of his dribbly excretions all over my trousers. It is a total mystery what anyone sees on him. Why can’t we have a proper dog who does not dribble and from whom you do not have to hide the rubbish bin whenever you go out?

Mirrors made by Wild Willy Barrett

A Wild Willy Barrett mirror

Anyway, duty done and trousers changed, on the way back to our house which takes us through the pub garden, we were intercepted by James “Desperate Dan” the Landlord of the White Hart and his consort the regally beautiful Mighty Omega, to join them in a farewell drink as we leave on Friday. With every fibre of my being screaming no, and with the thought of curling up in my bed with a box of lemsip uppermost in my mind, I heard That Nice Lady Decorator accept, and, turning to me she said “you can manage one, can’t you?”. I had also wanted to commune with my belated birthday present. pictured today, A fubulous mirro made by Wild Willy Barrett and incorporating the guitar he had used on me in his performance of “Headbutts” at my 60th birthday bash.

It was a struggle but I manfully agreed to a pint of Harvey’s, distantly aware that there will be no beer of note likely to touch my lips as soon as we leave Portsmouth on the overnight ferry to Santander, after departing the Isle Of Wight early next week. That was then that I came to the conclusion that alcohol can be a wonderful restorative. I believe it has tremendous potential to be a life saving cure for man flu. It is not yet been properly developed medically and it has some fairly unpleasant side effects, but the raw evidence became clear to me yesterday afternoon. A couple of pints and I felt better than I had through the last 4 paracetamol infused days. I shall mount a campaign upon my return from France, to raise money for beer trials. Man flu can and must be beaten, and the nutritional and medical value of real ale will be revealed at the same time.

Chris France

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