Years ago on Saturday Night Live's Weekend Update, Chevy Chase read an item that sounded very much like this:
"Government scientists revealed today that saliva has been found to cause cancer in lab rats. No cause for alarm, however, as it is only dangerous when swallowed in very small amounts over a long period of time."
Which leads me to 18-year-old-Boy, who spent two days this week blowing bits out of both ends of the alimentary canal. At some point, probably from dehydration, he decided that his throat was too sore to swallow. Anything. Including his own saliva.
For one very long day, everything I did (ptooey) was punctuated (ptooey) with the sound (ptooey) of the sick boy (ptooey) spitting into a big, (ptooey) plastic (ptooey) punch bowl. Ptooey.
He gets sick rarely enough that he also assumed that a 24-hour bug would magically disappear at hour 24. So there was a lot of clock watching, too.
20-year-old-Girl was only too happy to mother-hen her brother as much as he would allow, even pointing out to me, "It's so nice when he actually listens to me!" Except she is not yet an experienced nurse, and I had to countermand a couple of her orders, like, "Drink lots of water when you are done throwing up, so you won't get dehydrated."
Right idea, bad timing. Mostly she was happy to keep him company, as he is not much of a reader, and didn't feel well enough to play video games or watch a movie.
And 18-year-old-Boy actually went out of his way to thank the people who were taking care of him. "I hope you know how much I really appreciate what you are doing for me," he said to the Girl and me. And he thanked his dad for getting up with him several times in the middle of the night while he prayed to the porcelain gods.
"You seemed worried," his dad replied, "I thought it might help to have someone there."
Maybe there's hope for this kid, after all.