What a mess of a city

Yesterday, we traveled to Minneapolis. It was the day after a big snowstorm, and the only thing worse would be if we arrived a day earlier. Sidewalks haven’t been cleared, roads are covered with slush, and we tried walking around town. It wasn’t fun. Two foot tall piles of snow on the path made it more of a mountain climbing adventure.

One positive, though: I’m still suffering with this nasty deep-seated cold, erupting occasionally into hoarse coughing and snotty horrible sneezes. I found a cure! It’s only temporary, though, but it is good for a few hours relief. We went to an Indian restaurant and I ordered a vindaloo with a couple of volcanoes worth of hotness. It worked! My sinuses were thoroughly cleared out, I could breath unimpeded, and my throat was quivering in terror — if it coughed one more time, I was going to order another raund.

I am sorry to report, though, that around 2am the slime had oozed back and repopulated every cranial cavity. I may have to do it again.


  1. cartomancer says

    You have discovered how the British get through every winter. And most springs, summers and autumns too.

  2. Reginald Selkirk says

    You have respiratory symptoms, and you deliberately went out in public? I hope you tested negative for COVID first.

  3. jacksprocket says

    We hardly ever get snow like that in UK. Generally, the difference between winter and summer is that the rain’s a bit warmer in July. But that cold- I got what sounds the same at the beginning of December, and I’ve just about shrugged it off. Popping up worldwide, morphic resonancxe, Sheldrake was right. Try a tindaloo next time, or even a Plaza slow suicide.

  4. Walter Solomon says

    There’s never bad reason to have a vindaloo. I’d eat them everyday if I could.

  5. antigone10 says

    This is the concoction that helped me and spouse (and my mom) get rid of a cough that would NOT go away:

    8 oz. ginger, peeled, chopped
    ½ cup fresh lemon juice (we used bottled, it was fine)
    ⅓ cup honey (get actual honey, not corn syrup. Maple syrup or agave also works)
    Pulse ginger in a food processor to a coarse paste. Bring ginger and 6 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan; reduce heat and simmer until reduced to 3 cups,30–40 minutes.

    Strain into a large jar and mix in lemon juice and honey; add more lemon juice or honey, if desired. Let cool; cover and chill.

    It isn’t spicy, but it does pack a real kick. If the Indian food helped, I imagine this will also help.

  6. nomaduk says

    A decent curry house is a blessing. We are fortunate to have one even here in the wilderness that is Vermont.

  7. ANB says

    Not a day goes by that I don’t have at least one extra spicy meal. If I’m not sweating, it’s not hot enough. Works wonders for many things!

  8. says

    I remember a vaporub commercial where a kid says to his mother regarding how to cure a sibling’s congestion: Vaporize Him!

    PZ I hope you recover completely and soon.

  9. R. L. Foster says

    If you can’t eat Indian at every meal I recommend getting a bottle of Trader Joe’s Habanero hot sauce. A few drops of that on anything will clear you out. It’s not for the timid. It will clean out your sinuses and your colon. I hear it even strengthens your microbiome.

  10. birgerjohansson says

    I cannot offer any cure apart from rest and time.
    My nose has been dripping for more than two weeks.
    I spend a lot of time reading, and watching TV. Do you have any good books you would like to re-visit?

  11. bbarratt says

    PZ, pray tell ( I know!) what indian restaurant.. am always looking for good Indian food

  12. whheydt says

    When I was traveling in Australia about 30 years ago, the local folk remedy was a basin of very hot water with a few drop of eucalyptus oil in it. Bend of the basin and put a towel over your head and just breathe for about 10 minutes. Really cleared the sinuses out.

  13. Ada Christine says

    we got a lot of snow about two weeks ago. the city isn’t really equipped for how much we got so many streets are still not cleared and many sidewalks are covered with foot-compacted snow and ice. i hate it.

  14. planter says

    Lots of fun driving in Minneapolis through the snow. We drove through on our way home to Saskatchewan from Madison during the early parts of the storm on the 3rd. Most drivers were being appropriately cautious, but there were enough vehicles with inadequate tires and/or going recklessly fast to make it interesting. The snow plows were out in force throughout, so the roads were as good as they could be.

  15. Steve Morrison says

    My neighborhood’s back to normal today! Yesterday the sidewalks were nearly impassable, but Edina sends out plows for them as well as the streets. I don’t know what the rest of Minneapolis is like now, though.

  16. StevoR says

    @ hemidactylus : “One word. Wasabi!”

    Or Horseradish which Wasabi usually is – plus green colouring – the real plant (Eutrema japonicum or Wasabia japonica) being rather rare and expensive! (There was a segment on Adam Ruins everything on that which sadly my google-fu has failed to find.)

    Or Hot English mustard maybe?

    Meanwhile in Adelaide, South Oz, it is currently 32 degrees Celsius with a top of 36 degrees forecast. (Or 89 degrees now with the forecast max of 96 if you want the temps in Fahrenheit.)

  17. Silentbob says

    Mate, if I tried this “solution” it would be more than my sinuses I’d be clearing out.

    The result would simply be to increase the number of orifices constantly expectorating by one.

    (Don’t get me wrong, I love spicy food – from the belly button up.)

  18. Silentbob says

    … and that’s not even to mention that Ring of Fire by Johnny Cash would be playing in head all the next day.

  19. jacksprocket says

    benedic@7 – rhino horn? What do you do with it? Sounds like it would cure dry eyes as well.

  20. hemidactylus says

    @21- Silentbob
    Ouch! Wasabi stays local as a transient burn of the upper respiratory system. It doesn’t traffic in next day regrets of the blowtorch variety.

    I have some OTC nasal saline spray with eucalyptus that isn’t as harsh as wasabi. A friend who has allergies and asthma clued me in on the wonders of nasal saline irrigation. It can be overdone and one must be careful about contamination.

  21. benedic says

    To 23`
    Many European ENT specialists recommend it. It washes out the Sinuses using salt.

  22. antigone10 says

    Rhino horn is generally called a neti pot in the states. My spouse also uses it fairly regularly, as recommended by his ENT doc.