Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Saga Continues: Hives...

Now this is downright unfair!

Seems I've picked up a new allergy at 47 years of age. Every evening I've been breaking out in Hives. Quite uncomfortable and itchy. Covering most of my torso, arms, neck, belly, shoulders...three days in a row now.

I had a follow up with my Dermatologist for the suspicious bit of skin she burned off a month ago (most likely okay, but would like to see me again if it doesn't heal by the middle of January) so I brought up the Hives incident to her. Two days in the evening breaking out with the pruritisy stuff. I (being the ever dutiful husband) blamed Joni and the change in laundry detergent.

"Not for hives", the good doctor said. "Hives is 99 percent of the time a food allergy".

"What!" I said, "You mean to tell me at 47 years of age, after eating most anything and everything, you are going to tell me that I have developed a food allergy"?

She smiled, gave me a compassionate look, and said: "Yes, ain't it grand? What have you been eating lately? Hives should show up with in a few minutes to a few hours of eating that which you are allergic to."

She wrote a prescription for an antihistamine.

So what food would you hate most to give up? Wine? Beer? Ho Hos? What food could you not live without?

Oh the Universe is cruel at times! Panish in its devious, playful negative nature. Devilish.

I had an idea what the culprit could be. So last night, I experimented. Driving back to the Homestead after completing my five days of work in the Napa Valley, I stopped at Carl's Junior. I got the Big Bacon Cheeseburger and wolfed it down.

Twenty minutes later the Hives came back again. Cheese has been the common denominator in all three breakouts of Hives.

I am allergic to cheese! Disaster! The good Dermatologist did hold out some hope. She said that sometimes this is just a bizarre fleeting thing lasting a few weeks to a few months.

Joni, knowing what a cheesehead I am, laughed when I told her. "You eat cheese everyday! How could Hives be caused by that now?" I showed her my hives...

I'd give up most anything before giving up cheese. Wine. Beer. Scotch. Meat. Television. This Computer and the Internet. Possibly, my dog. But not cheese. If there is some devilish deity known as Pan, I'm sure he is laughing, drinking wine and having some brie and bread...

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