Monday, October 21, 2013

Mercurochrome, Tussin, and other Cure-Alls

Ya'll, this is a true story, I swear on the Bible. It wasn't nearly as funny at the time, but since regaining control of my bodily functions, I can look back and laugh about it. Enjoy, ya'll!


Mercurochrome, ‘Tussin, and Other Homemade Elixirs

All you needed to survive in the good 'ol days was Mercurochrome, a li’l Tussin, and any one of a variety of liquor-based elixirs. If you ain’t heard of it, Mercurochrome was this medicine that achieved more drama than anything. By puttin’ this metallic red liquid on a paper cut, you too could look like you’d been a chainsaw juggler. It also had the notable ability to minimize minor injuries of children. You see, when you ran that little plastic wand over little Jimmy’s exaggerated boo-boo, it was a reminder of the burning flames of hell that laid in wait for children who lied to their mommas and daddies. It killed the germs, the feeling in your extremities, and occasionally the will the live. You could pick it up for a buck down at Eckerd’s, and now you know why you can’t buy it anymore. Cheap medicine always goes away.

Tussin was a similar miracle drug. If you had a tickle in your throat, a life-threatening case of the whooping cough, or a VW bug convention in your bronchioles, you needed a little Tussin. Trying to resuscitate Mr. Whiskers? Pour some Tussin on him. Need to clean your spark plugs? It’s on Aisle 9 by the Vicks salve. I don’t think it came with directions back then. I can’t recall ever seeing grannies and granddaddies read medicine labels. You’d take a swig outta the bottle, and if they found you naked in the basement singing ‘It’s Raining Men’, you’d get a shorter swig next time.

That reminds me of the time a few years back when my husband bought this magical elixir called “Dr. Tichenor’s Mouth Wash Concentrate and Antiseptic”…and secret weapon of the United States Marine Corps. First of all, who ever got the idea of putting kerosene in a mouth wash bottle and slappin’ a label on it should be shot. Second of all, and it pains me to say this:  folks, please read labels.

My better half had bought a bottle, and left it on the bathroom counter. I see the word “mouthwash”, and think ‘hmmm…morning breath:  1, me: 0. I’ll give it a shot.’ And by a shot, I mean I poured me a generous shot glass of it. Pour, swish, rinse, repeat, pour, swish, rinse….oh God, Momma, it burns! Ya’ll, I ain’t lyin’. My eyes swelled shut, my medulla oblongata started drippin’ out of my nose, I started foamin’ at the mouth like a rabid possum. If I could’ve seen to have found the toilet, I’d have rinsed my head and cleaned out our drain lines in one fail swoop. But I was at least 8 feet from the toilet; it might as well have been in Kazakhstan.  I’m stuck with no help in sight. Standing there in my drawers, foam oozing outta my kisser, and sobbing like a baby from where my eyes used to be, I was a broken woman. I needed a tracheotomy, but found myself Bic-less.  Suddenly, I remembered:  my phone was on the counter! Dear God, please don’t have let my phone battery have gotten corroded during all this mess!

*Phew!* I found the phone, and by touch and memory, I managed to call my husband despite the disabling of three of my senses.  Please, please, please, let him answer! I need him to tell the kids I love 'em, and there’s a Tater Tot Casserole in the fridge for supper.’

It rings once….twice… “Hey babe.” (That’s how he answers my calls…ain’t he sweet?)
“Plobble! Whabble ibn the blubble ibiz…BLIND! Shoaming from da moush…can’t feel ma lagsh…9-1-1…oh, how I shlub Gee-jush, but Gee-jush, why can't I shee?!

A good 10 minutes later, he somehow understood what I’d done. Drank fire, peed my pants, and gotten surprisingly fresh breath all in the time it took to make a cup of coffee.

Folks, this is why it’s important to find your soul mate. From hearing his name, Plobble, ooze down  my face, he stayed with me (though finding much amusement in my paralysis and correlating incontinence); kept asking me questions to keep me alert  (“Noble, I habn’t hibbit the bobble early today, Jabbick-Abbis!”); and held my hand across the miles until my left-eye reopened for lunch. That’s love, ya’ll.

PS- I bet at least one of ya’ll found yourself sayin' my lines aloud just now. Nothin’ but love, ya’ll. 

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