Bronchitis Brain!

Bronchitis is officially “when the inner walls that line the main air passageways of your lungs become infected and inflamed” ( Mayo, the clinic, not the Five Live radio host). Unofficially, it’s “what happens to Hans after a cold, at least once a year, and if not zapped by antibiotics immediately gets worse and maybe almost kills him via PNEUMONIA.” It’s one of the gifts of a crappy immune system, and it’s all upons right now. I’ve missed two days of work, and only went in to the doctor after the nice secretary for our office said after hearing my croaky voice, “You need to see a doctor.”
“Oh, yeah,” I said. “That’s a good idea. I’ll do that.” Another problem with The Bronchitis is it turns me into an idiot – I now call it Bronchitis Brain – I can’t finish thoughts and could spend hours just staring off into space. I imagine it’s something like being drunk, only instead of feeling good, it feels crappy. Can’t finish thoughts, winded after ambling around the apartment, etc. I know it’s bad when I WANT to read all the dialogue for the X-Men 2 video game, which reads something like this, every single time:
“You, villain! Are you working for Apocalypse?”
“Aha, X-Men!Yes, I am working for Apocalypse! It was not the best career decision I have made! But I will defeat you! Bwahahahaha!” Before each boss battle the villain really does that laugh, and because the text for interactions is written out, they all end with the “ha ha haahahahahaha!” I think they laugh. Even with Bronchitis Brain, I skip before the voice actor gets to the laugh.
Anyway. I did get antibiotics and will be heading back into work to hack and cough my way into clearer lungs, trying not to infect everyone there. My voice is lower by about an octave, and though my wife pretends not to notice I think it is much cooler sounding  (a former colleague, I do get this about every year, called it ‘sexier’). Although, like my father, who’s voice is this low usually and goes subtonal when he gets a cold, it’s harder to hear and understand.
Update: Bronchitis also means I get winded at 10 am from the little physical movement involved in working and spend the rest of the day sort of awkwardly smiling/grimacing and nodding at people pretending I understand what they’re talking about while my brain rapidly comes up with the next thing to say. And I often say, pointing at my head, “Bronchitis Brain.”

Leave a Reply