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A salute to a small blue glass jar - The Fucking Bluebird of Goddamn Happiness [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Zoethe

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A salute to a small blue glass jar [Oct. 19th, 2004|10:23 am]
Zoethe
[Current Mood |sickSniffly]

Vicks Vapo-Rub is one of the great inventions or our age.

Stayed home from the Monday night movie because it was a late start and because I had homework to complete. Finished homework. Took Nyquil. Went to bed early.

Woke up at 3am choking. Wandered around the house, drinking water blowing my nose, hacking up goop, still not breathing.

Finally opened up the medicine cabinet and spotted the Vicks. Applied it liberally to my nose. Was asleep in about 5 minutes.

Bill Cosby did a great routine years ago on the wonders of Vicks - how it was his mother's panacea for everything. I have a cold - slather on the Vicks. I broke my arm - here, spread some Vicks on it. What's in this sandwich? - peanut butter and Vicks.

And I remember, as a kid, in the days before Nyquil and Dayquil and TheraFlu (man, do I love that TheraFlu), what it was like. There was no Robitussin, just nasty cough syrup that didn't do any good. When you got a bad cold you just suffered and suffered. Mom would put us to bed at night with the vaporizer running full steam and a big blob of Vicks at the lip of it, filling the room with menthol vapors that helped clear our sinuses. She would rub it into our chests and it would burn and then mellow to warmth, and she put a wash cloth over it to keep it off our pajamas. Sick kids all slept in the same room to get the benefit of the vaporizer, so sometimes the crib would be rolled in with my baby sister in it, and my brother and I would have to be extra quiet, to keep from waking her up. The room was tropical, warm and steamy, and if you could fall asleep while all that Vicks was filling the air, you might be able to sleep through the night.

Now, thanks to NyQuil and DayQuil and TheraFlu and Robitussin, we can get up in the morning and go to work, artificially suppressing cold symptoms so that they don't interfere with work or school.

But it's nice to know that when all that fails, you can still fall back on Vicks.
LinkReply

Comments:
[User Picture]From: suburbfabulous
2004-10-19 02:33 pm (UTC)
I prefer Sudafed Purple. I killed a 24-pack, the day of your wedding to Rodent.
You can suppress ANY illness, even stereo pneumonia, if you have enough drugs!
Woo. Hah.
-Guthrie, who didn't drink or smoke anything that day, but who popped enough Sudafed Purple to kill Keith Richards.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-10-19 02:35 pm (UTC)
Different things work for different people. Some people swear by DayQuil, and it does nothing for me. TheraFlu is cold manna from heaven.
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[User Picture]From: suburbfabulous
2004-10-19 02:54 pm (UTC)
I never tried DayQuil. I did enough NyQuil in September of 1999, though, to induce hallucinations.
I think I will tell that story tomorrow (I'm using the last of my days off before leaving this job.)
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-10-19 03:19 pm (UTC)
I don't know how I've managed to miss friending you up until now....
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[User Picture]From: suburbfabulous
2004-10-19 03:22 pm (UTC)
I always figured Stein PAID you not to, so he'd always have more friends than I did.
I don't put it past him, you know.
>8)X
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-10-19 03:24 pm (UTC)
Just my own stupidity, and insane schedule. That's all.
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[User Picture]From: suburbfabulous
2004-10-19 03:33 pm (UTC)
It's not like I took it incredibly personally (hides voodoo doll with echostation.com scrawled all over it, puts away gas cans and Dremel)...>8)X
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-10-19 04:01 pm (UTC)
Well, that's good to know....
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[User Picture]From: suburbfabulous
2004-10-19 04:08 pm (UTC)
>8)X
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[User Picture]From: kid_lit_fan
2004-10-19 04:01 pm (UTC)
I miss the old-school NyQuil. It used to be about 50 proof, and dry up the symptoms and knock me on my ass so I could sleep for, ohhhhh, 12 hours or so, and wake up feeling a LOT better. Now it just kinda sorta makes me a little sleepy and kinda sorta
of skims off the top 20% of the symptoms.

When I'm really sick, I like to just sleep it off, and, since NyQuil changed, that involves prescriptions.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-10-19 04:03 pm (UTC)
Yeah, the good old days....
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[User Picture]From: suburbfabulous
2004-10-19 04:08 pm (UTC)
Old Skool! I found that Robitussin and IW Harper's bourbon, if properly mixed, achieves similar results.
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[User Picture]From: fieryfae469
2004-10-19 02:50 pm (UTC)
heh. I love me some Vicks. Give me the old fashioned. I hate the crap inside me that phamraceutical companies make. I think I have some Dayquil somewhere though. hehe not had a bad cold since Feb 2003 though so I dunno. But Vicks is always the best smell and i remember some of those things you talked about too. hehe. THANKFULLY no one got rolled into my room though.
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[User Picture]From: suburbfabulous
2004-10-19 02:55 pm (UTC)
If I'd had to share a room with my sisters, sick or well, I'd have asked my parents to hospitalize me every time I sneezed.
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[User Picture]From: fieryfae469
2004-10-19 03:03 pm (UTC)
being the only girl, and two brothers who bunked up, i was always lucky to have my own space. I was sick sick sick all the time as a kid. Asthma and living on a farm and dad working in factory, chemisty labs, or with fertilizer store... alwyas i had some allergen in my way. We lived on a farm for 6 years that heated with the old coal dust. Messed me up for ages. Then i married a heavy smoker and was allergic to cigarettes. Needless to say. I do better now.

Much better....
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[User Picture]From: suburbfabulous
2004-10-19 03:08 pm (UTC)
I was the only boy, and worshipped like a god.
Well, ok, I WAS the only boy.
I worked at a chemical plant once, and found out what undiluted caustic soda does when it hits chest hair.
Nothing good, if you're the chest hair.
Nothing short of miraculous, if you're the owner of said chest hair.
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[User Picture]From: fieryfae469
2004-10-19 03:12 pm (UTC)
Nothing good, if you're the chest hair.
Nothing short of miraculous, if you're the owner of said chest hair


I don't think the caustic substances were ever meant to be on human bodies, LMAO i still have a bleb on my skin where something nasty from giving Chemo somehow splashed on my arm. :/ It's tiny and only I know it's there. But still. Think of what this stuff does INSIDE SOMEONE! eeeek~~~
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[User Picture]From: suburbfabulous
2004-10-19 03:21 pm (UTC)
Awp! Gnyergh! Chemo and radiation treatment fascinate me, because they involve all kinds of elements that would otherwise kill INSTANTANEOUSLY.
I bear no scars from my dances with Drano, thankfully. And no, that stuff is not meant to be on human skin. The sodium starts getting hot the minute it finds any kind of water, and skin is mostly water (according to Neutrogena, anyway...)

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[User Picture]From: fieryfae469
2004-10-19 03:34 pm (UTC)
Yeah, and if we could find a way to live after the drinking of Chlorox bleach... there would be no more AIDS. :/

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[User Picture]From: suburbfabulous
2004-10-19 03:37 pm (UTC)
And why can't we? It's only bleach. You can EAT bleach, I'm told.
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From: haroeris_astrum
2004-10-19 02:59 pm (UTC)
Vicks in not good in one's eyes :S
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-10-19 03:19 pm (UTC)
No, definitely not.
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[User Picture]From: kid_lit_fan
2004-10-19 04:12 pm (UTC)
I've been told that it's REALLY not good when you're stoned and think it's the Vaseline. All I can say is that it's a good thing water-based lubes come in very different jars.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-10-19 11:56 pm (UTC)
Having made contact with vicks-ed fingers, I can definitely say that you are talking buzz-kill.
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From: haroeris_astrum
2004-10-19 11:19 pm (UTC)
Ok, time that you told me something odd :)
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[User Picture]From: cindyg
2004-10-19 03:12 pm (UTC)
Hallo, surfed in from a mention in theferrett some time back, and you've been on my friends-page since.

Vicks VapoRub and Formula 44 were the staples of my childhood during the evil monsoon season, when tropical fevers follow after getting soaked in the rain. My mom's therapy was to pop me into a hot shower to take out the chill, give me a brisk rub-down, and then slather my back and chest with Vicks before bundling me into flannel jammies.

Even today, the first thing anyone in this house reaches for when cold symptoms arise, is the Vicks VapoRub. Stat.

^__^
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-10-19 03:22 pm (UTC)
Formula 44! That's what it was. Ws good for about 7 minutes.

It is the scent of comfort for me, Vicks is.
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[User Picture]From: suburbfabulous
2004-10-19 03:35 pm (UTC)
My grandmother used to try rubbing Ben-Gay all over my chest when I had a cold.
I'm not so sure that did what it was supposed to do...but I could flex my pecs for days on end, if necessary.
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From: tessbelle
2004-10-19 03:52 pm (UTC)
I always hated Vicks and my mother used to chase me around the house trying to rub it on my chest and nose! I think she still would today if she could catch me.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-10-20 12:05 am (UTC)
It was salvation to me. I suffered from a lot of bronchitis as a child - some of my earliest memories are of hanging over a tub full of scalding hot water, gasping for air in the steam, my dad holding me so I wouldn't get burned.
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[User Picture]From: cubes
2004-10-19 06:05 pm (UTC)
My mother was never much into the Vicks.

She was a big fan of turning on the hot water (old-fashioned hot water, not this newfangled anti-scalding water-heater safety regulated crap) full-blast and having us lean over the sink with a towel over our heads for some period of time that seemed about 5 minutes short of forEVER. I *hated* that, but damn if it doesn't do a sepectacular job of clearing out the head and chest goop.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-10-20 12:08 am (UTC)
Oh, believe me, I have those memories, too. I suffered bronchitis chronically as a child. The whole regimine was put underway as soon as I sniffled. I finally got over it in second grade, when I stopped staying inside on cold days and being treated like a hothouse flower.

Still, to this day almost every cold goes into a spasming, hacking cough that lasts for weeks....
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[User Picture]From: fionnbharro
2004-10-19 07:58 pm (UTC)

My wife, and Vap-O-Rub

I was a sickly child. I have memories of my mother rubbing Vicks into my chest, and daubing it under my nose and throat. These are *good* memories. So much so that it's become a 'comfort smell', much like some foods become 'comfort foods' for others.

When we were first dating, the woman who would become my fiancee, and eventually my wife, put some Vicks Vap-O-Rub behind her ears and between her breasts one evening before we went out... waiting for me to find it as we snuggled or fooled around.

That was when I realized she would be 'The One'.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-10-19 08:27 pm (UTC)

Re: My wife, and Vap-O-Rub

That is so SWEET! She wins the "Awww!" award of the day!
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[User Picture]From: susitna
2004-10-19 09:02 pm (UTC)
"Peanut butter and Vicks" is the first laugh I've had since the campus Sox riot last night. I'd never heard that one before.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-10-20 12:08 am (UTC)
Cosby was the best.
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From: klig
2004-10-19 10:47 pm (UTC)
artificially suppressing cold symptoms so that they don't interfere with work or school.

It is a worry, isn't it? After all, a fever is your body raising its own temperature slightly in order to kill off bugs. In fact, pretty much all flu symptoms are your body's reaction to infection. Not healthy to suppress them if it can be avoided.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-10-19 11:54 pm (UTC)
It is sad that life moves at such a pace that we have no choice but to push ourselves through sickness.

Then again, there really were no halcyon good old days when people had the luxury to stay in bed at every sniffle. Cows still had to be milked, stores still had to be run, etc. There was no sick pay. And lots more run-of-the-mill stuff was likely to kill you.

The good old days sucked, too.

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From: klig
2004-10-19 11:58 pm (UTC)
I say that we've all got soft. Back in my day, you had a dose of leprosy in the morning instead of that pansy coffee! That got you going for sure!
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-10-20 12:00 am (UTC)
Sadly enough, I am old enough to have had things be quite different "back in my day."

Then again, I wouldn't trade being there to see the Beatles on Ed Sullivan.
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[User Picture]From: donkey_hokey
2004-10-19 11:45 pm (UTC)
Yes! Vicks is the only thing that lets me get to sleep when I've got a stuffy nose. All the OTC pills never do ANYTHING for me. I love Vicks. (And if I ever have to deal with anything really smelly, I can use it then, too. Remember Silence of the Lambs?)
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-10-19 11:58 pm (UTC)
Eek. I had managed to block that out.[g]
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[User Picture]From: call_me_harmony
2004-10-20 01:07 pm (UTC)
I think memories of Vicks is the reason I like Eucalytos Oil so much it always reminds me of the smell.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-10-20 01:29 pm (UTC)
I think you're right. Sense memory.
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