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Old Gold & Black

Old Gold & Black

Scott Kull: The new Director of Athletics
Abigail Taylor, Contributing Writer • April 16, 2024

Snot rockets and sour stomachs

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HOW TO SURVIVE BEING SICK IN COLLEGE —

Getting sick in college is almost a rite of passage, and it is only a matter of time until you are the next victim of the latest influenza. But no worries, you will not be left without any weapons in your arsenal. Below are some tips on how to survive being sick in college:

1. Deny you are sick. Denial will help you not treat your oncoming sickness before it gets worse, which will make you think you have outsmarted those nasty little germs. This step is mostly to feed your pride. Once you’re sick, all of that pride will slowly trickle away. Better to stock up now.

2. There will come a time when you use up all of your tissues and discover you have none left 10 minutes before class starts. Since you have lost your pride already in getting sick in the first place, you really cannot get lower than this, so grab a roll of toilet paper to use as tis- sues. Walk to class. Feel sad. Face judgment by your peers.

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3. Learn different techniques to hide your cough. Your peers don’t understand you can’t help the horrible scratch at the back of your throat and will give you cold-hearted glares as you slowly rattle what is left of your poor, abused lungs. Some techniques include the “pretending to yell instead of coughing” fake out, the “passing it off as beatboxing” move, smothering your face into your elbow, attempting to stop breathing, saying it is your way of communication with the Dark Lord Satan of the Underworld, or other seemingly normal activities that can cover your cough.

4. Of course, you can also choose to aggressively retaliate against your peers. Touch everyone’s things in the bathroom with your germy hands. Sneeze on your enemies. Accidentally stick your hand into the entire batch of mac-n-cheese at Burwell. You will have your revenge, one booger at a time.

5. Get to know everyone at Health Services. Walk in and nod your head at the regulars —Bobby who constantly gets injured, Jolene who is here today to figure out the weird rash on her arm, someone else who was turned into a newt but miraculously got better, and you — the one who is constantly “beatboxing” in class. You may discover that these new friends of yours will help you out when you are sick, such as fetching you ginger ale and crackers when you have a stomach flu and the only food you have on you are candy bars and booze.

6. Prepare to find yourself randomly waking up from naps you don’t recall falling asleep into. You may look at the clock and then check back five minutes later only to discover you took a two hour nap. Sadly, you will not feel refreshed but more tired. The concept of time will begin to blur as you lose all sense of reality. That cold medicine does things to your brain, you realize. Maybe you’ll just snooze it off…

7. Prepare to be quarantined from your friends. They hang out with you most of the time. They do not want to end up like the sad, little thing you have become. They will send sympathetic Snapchats but that is about as much interaction that you will receive from the gang. Your social life will probably consist of hanging out with Jolene and her rash.

8. Gather all the blankets you have. Buy five more blankets. Create a nest. Snuggle until the sickness goes away. This is scientifically proven to make you better. Maybe. We’re not sure. It just feels nice and that’s all that matters in the end.

9. Do not fret when you attempt to do your homework and your mind goes blank. This symptom may be a regular one for you, but on top of feeling crummy and having to analyze the sexual entendre behind so-and-so’s epic while comparing it to Imperialism throughout the 19th century and how the author’s backstory of losing his dog because his father accidentally sat on it when playing a rowdy game of musical chairs that was said to have set off the San Andreas fault connects with the text as well may, perhaps, seem a bit overwhelming. Try to slowly approach your work. Try opening a word document and see how you feel. Too much? Close the window and try again later.

10. Once you start feeling better, look on the other sick people with confidence. You have survived the bug. You are the chosen one. Walk mightily up the front stairs of Old Main. You are fearless. If you are sick, we hope this article helped you out (if it didn’t make any sense, we blame the Nyquil). We wish you luck on trying to master papers and impending exams as you feel half-dead and just want hot chocolate and blankets galore.

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