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Oct 30 2013

Intelligent design my ass

These days, every-time I read about or hear someone refer to our bodies as “miracles” it makes me sick to my stomach. Our bodies aren’t miracles, they’re hopelessly bugged-out collections of molecular Rube Goldberg contraptions which seem to excel solely at delivering intractable pain to a helpless brain. The only miracle is they can operate for any time at all without breaking down. Last Sunday was the first day I felt anywhere close to normal in the last three goddamn months. It felt like, finally, the blood-cell counts were getting back to normal, I didn’t have the spins as bad, night sweats and the aches and pains had eased up. It had been so long since I’d felt that good it was almost like being high on some kind of designer drug. Well, we know that can’t be allowed to continue huh?

By that same night, the very same fucking night — I didn’t even get one full 24 hour pitiful goddamn day of relief — completely out of the blue, completely unrelated to anything else, I came down with the worst sore throat I’ve ever experienced. Calling it a sore throat is laughably inadequate, it’s more like having a lit blowtorch waved over hornet stings, wave after wave of raw fiery intense pain combined with a high fever. One side, from jaw to collar bone, has swollen up like a football, so much I am now physically deformed and too self conscious to be seen in public. I cannot talk or eat, I haven’t been able to sleep for more than an hour at a stretch all week, and I can barely even swallow. Only vicodan taken by the handful has kept me halfway sane with the pain while the antibiotics slowly work — and they are working very, very slowly if at all.

This came completely out of the blue, just my bad luck, probably some bug I picked up in one of the many, many doctor’s offices I’ve been in over the last few weeks, combined with being on immune-suppresant drugs for a rheumatoid disorder.

I’m just fucking goddamn furious about it, so angry at how shitty someone’s luck, my luck, has to be to suffer that kind of timing, so near enraged I want to start smashing shit like a rabid chimp. It’s clear this will utterly dominate my entire fucking week now, another week wasted, on top of the last 12 wasted weeks, another week spent in complete misery, another week where all I can think and talk about is how much it hurts. In fact based on recent experience I fully expect it will stretch into next week, or maybe suck down the entire month of November, or maybe I’ll hit the jackpot and it will become some kind of super-duper expensive chronic immensely painful deformity that never, ever goes away. For no other reason than 4 billion years of evolution haven’t come up with a better defense against a dumb microbe 100 times smaller than the period at the end of this sentence. What a sad excuse for a fucking miracle.

13 comments

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  1. 1
    Michael Brew

    It’s well known that the Designer is an asshole, so this is just proof of ID.

  2. 2
    khms

    Clearly, the designer was some guy from marketing. On the other hand, think of how busy the poor tech support guys are who are making sure that most of these Rube Goldberg constructs work at least halfway. No wonder they’re always dropping some of us … and no wonder prayer doesn’t work, can you imagine how long the waiting times in their phone system must be? Years, probably. Maybe decades.

    Slightly more seriously, I remember how bad I felt the last days before my diabetes diagnosis (type I, another autoimmune problem). And then when my feet started to hurt so much I had trouble walking, until this was recognized as a rare side effect of getting the blood sugar under control and I got the right medication for that.

    Our family seems to be a bit of a drag on our medical insurances. Father had diabetes and epilepsy, I have diabetes, sister had breast cancer (treated far too late), mother has a broken spine … I shudder imagining how this’d work out in the pre-ACA US. Since mother has “private” insurance (you pay first, then get money back – mine is “compulsory”, so except for possible co-pay the pharmacy directly invoices the insurer) I’ve seen the invoices for her broken spine – approximately worth our house. And when I last looked a few years ago, my medication alone cost my insurer more than €5000 a year. Add stuff like visiting a diabetes specialist (and their lab) every three months, eye doc every year … this stuff adds up. (And of course, the same medication in the US isn’t exactly cheaper …)

  3. 3
    StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return!

    That really sucks. Hope you feel better and get well soon, DarkSyde.

  4. 4
    Jeremy Shaffer

    These days, every-time I read about or hear someone refer to our bodies as “miracles” it makes me sick to my stomach. Our bodies aren’t miracles, they’re hopelessly bugged-out collections of molecular Rube Goldberg contraptions which seem to excel solely at delivering intractable pain to a helpless brain. The only miracle is they can operate for any time at all without breaking down.

    Then again there are a lot of people running aorund that think finding a parking spot is a miracle. I guess once you’ve set the bar that low almost anything could be regarded as a miracle.

  5. 5
    Enkidum

    My wife was just telling me about her friend who keeps trying to get us to go to church. Her knock-down argument was that this weekend, it looked like it was going to rain just before they went to church, so she prayed that it wouldn’t start, and then they were going shopping, so she prayed to hold off the rain a little longer, then they were going somewhere else, and, you guessed it, she prayed some more. And in every case it worked. Then as soon as they got home it started pissing down. It was a miracle, QED, the Christian God exists.

    Somewhat OT, but anyways, I hope the sore throat lasts less long than you think it will. Best of luck. Try praying, I hear that works.

  6. 6
    Stella

    Stephen,

    Has a doctor looked at that swelling?

    Stella

  7. 7
    baquist

    I keep hoping that your luck/fortune/life turns around – any time now! Here’s to you, and the courage you have to share your life with dignity. We’re rooting for you.

  8. 8
    bryanfeir

    I’ve always liked the Russian dancing bear analogy to biology and anatomy.

    People applaud the Russian dancing bear at the circus. They do not applaud because it dances particularly well; they applaud because they are amazed it can dance at all.

    As you say, a whole lot of biology is kludged-together Rube Goldbergian contraptions. Evolution does not reward working well; evolution rewards ‘good enough’.

  9. 9
    magistramarla

    Stephen,
    I hope that the antibiotics work soon. If they don’t, complain to the doc – you might need a different antibiotic.

  10. 10
    Stephen "DarkSyde" Andrew

    Yeah it’s been scoped and cultured, it’s just a common opportunistic bacteria that lit me up like an atom bomb, probably because I was cleared to take Humira again. Humira is notorious for facilitating garden variety infections. And I’m sorry for bitching guys, but I’m just red-faced livid about it, maybe that’s a good sign, that I’m healthy enough that I can feel intense raw seething anger. It’s just too surreal that the worst, most painful, most debilitating infection I have ever suffered in 51 years of life happened to hit me out of the clear blue sky the very fucking instant I start finally feeling halfway normal after 12 weeks of being scared shitless and practically bed ridden and dead broke. I was already way, way behind on a bunch of stuff, now I’m screwed, the entire week shot to shit and maybe next week too for all I know. I owe work to people who have already bent over backwards to give me many extra weeks because of the cancer scare. Now I get to go to them again and tell them I have a whole brand new issue that has stopped me dead in my tracks until it arbitrarily decides to clear and I have no idea when that will be. I’m sure they’ll love to hear that.

    I’m over 48 hours into a powerful wide spectrum antibiotic regimen and as best I can tell they aren’t doing much of anything. It hasn’t gotten worse, it might have gotten a tiny little bit better today. But at this rate of improvement it’s going to be weeks before I feel normal again. I’m sitting at home totally alone with no food, feeling awful, too feverish to even go to the grocery store, with a a grotesquely swollen, hideously painful throat whacked out on as many vicodan as I can safely take while rotating ice packs and wondering if and when it will ever start to get better. There’s not much else to do but sit here waiting and so fucking pissed off about it I can barely think straight.

  11. 11
    F [i'm not here, i'm gone]

    khms

    Clearly, the designer was some guy from marketing.

    He must have had the UX people do the actual work, though.

  12. 12
    ThorGoLucky

    Mew. May you get well soonly.

  13. 13
    birgerjohansson

    Heaven as Dilbert’s workplace?

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