Doxycycline day two
Thursday, July 7 2005
Already the Doxycycline is working its magic. My Lyme disease rash, though no smaller in size, has faded somewhat and, best of all, it has nearly stopped itching. Up until now, the persistent itching of that rash has been the disease's most annoying symptom.
In the early afternoon my digestive system seemed to be making some adjustments to the mass firing of its bacterial staff, and that adjustment manifested mostly in the form of a hearty round of diarrhea explosif. Its fragrance, though not exactly reminiscent of roses, was not exactly normal either.
I was back in top form by dinnertime, when I met Gretchen in the lush garden area behind the Rosendale Café for our ususal Rosendale dinner of tempeh reubens.
This evening Gretchen and I watched an episode of the FX show called 30 Days, hosted by Morgan Spurlock, the wonderkind who put himself through 30 days of fast food in his documentary Supersize Me. The show we saw was the one where a conservative Christian meathead from rural Michigan spends 30 days living with a gay man in the Castro in San Francisco. This might sound like it has the makings for spectacular cross-cultural fireworks, the likes of which one never sees in the sigh-inducingly-contrived situations of more conventional reality television. But Christian or not, the meathead from Michigan was nonetheless subject to Darwinian forces of selection and only someone with a suitably open mind to begin with would volunteer to participate in such a convention-defying experience.
The episode (like one I saw previously about a Christian meathead who lives for a 30 days as a Muslim) provided support for my contention that it's difficult for people to maintain their provincial prejudices when they're exposed to the human diversity of a major city. Anyone who hopes to maintain a fear of homosexuals in a city as big as, say, Washington, DC, will have to avoid the street, social functions, and cautiously police every developing friendship. This gives me hope that anyone Bush appoints to the Supreme Court will be more enlightened about gays than, say, the average person who voted for Bush. (By contrast, it's easy for urban conservatives to maintain their fear and antipathy for blacks and the poor, since it's not difficult to avoid them at upscale urban social functions.) The meathead hero on tonight's program packs plenty of Old Testament Christian baggage about homosexuals before setting out for San Francisco, but the gays he meets there turn out to be actual human beings. But they themselves don't really provide the connection necessary to be understood. Instead the meathead needs interpreters and go-betweens: their straight friends and the most straight-acting among them. Where the series shines is when it shows gradual discovery of common ground necessary to weaken the strength of prejudices.
Still, though, the meathead maintains his belief that the gay lifestyle is unpardonably sinful. His faith in the fairness of God forces him to hold on to the view that being gay is somehow a choice, even after being guided through a good thought experiment for Christian homophobes. The experiment goes like this: imagine living in a hypothetical world in which the Bible claims heterosexuality is the abomination. Could you choose homosexuality in such a world? Most homophobes would quickly answer no. (I suspect, however, that there would be a long pause before Senator Rick Santorum answered.)
That thought experiment was part of a conversation the meathead had with a lesbian pastor who leads a controversial gay-friendly church in the Castro. I kept wondering when she was going to ask him if he ate pork or shellfish, acts also forbidden in the Old Testament, but she never did. I don't understand why Christian conservatives aren't challenged more about their cherry picking of forbidden practices to raise alarms about. It would seem that just about every Christian extremist effort could be thwarted by the addition of riders exhorting the observance of bevies of lesser-emphasized Biblical prohibitions.
Before I went to bed I was massaging my right upper gum near the wisdom tooth and I induced such a deep, lingering pain that it convinced me that I must have developed some sort of serious dental problem, perhaps an abscess. I've had pain in that area for over a week and perhaps I should do something about it. It's been low on my priorities what with its coincidence with early-stage Lyme disease (and for a time I thought it might be a symptom of that).
But you just can't let problems fester in your mouth; it's too close to your soul. It's difficult to tease problems with the mouth apart from problems with the soul. Machines will never have souls until they either have or emulate the having of mouths.
If I really do have an abscessed molar, this would be the first time I've ever suffered from two serious unrelated medical problems at the same time. It's something of a milestone on the way to growing old.
Lulu likes to lie on my computer keyboard.
My Lyme rash today, after a full day on Doxycycline.
A couple flags among the houses at the western entrance to Rosendale on 213.
Eleanor in the grass in the Rosendale Café's outdoor garden patio area.
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