Antidote: (n) a medicine taken or given to counteract a specific poison.
Sometimes I do dorky things just to make sure that people don’t believe I have become divine overnight through a particularly good sleep cycle.
Actually, it is my penchant in life to attempt new things, which always opens the door to the possibility of playing the fool.
I went with my wife and children to Guaymas, Sonora, Mexico, where my mother-in-law had retired.
She did not like me.
I don’t know whether it was something actually problematic between us, or if she felt the need to act out the typical plotline for a sitcom between son-in-law and mother-in-law.
She had a house on the beach. So one morning I took the children out to enjoy the ocean, only to discover that the entire landscape was covered with dead jellyfish. Unwilling to be deterred from our sea-time pleasure, and since the jellyfish were up on the shore and not in the water, I let the kids splash around while I sat, carefully watching them,
Meanwhile, more dead and dying jellyfish were washing onto the shore. I didn’t think much about it, until one of them brushed up against me, and with his last aspiration, stung me on the leg.
It didn’t hurt. Kind of a magnified bee sting. But in no time at all, the wound began to swell and I was sick.
It was a strange sense of ill will. I knew I was in trouble.
I made my way up to the house with the kids and told my wife and mother-in-law what had happened. Being a great veteran of the region and the sea, my mother-in-law grabbed some Adolph’s meat tenderizer and spread it on my wound, telling me “that always works.”
It didn’t. I was getting sicker and sicker. My mother-in-law told my wife that I was just being a wimp.
So I finally had to bypass old mom and asked my wife to call the local doctor. He arrived about fifteen minutes later with his satchel, saw the sting and reached in and pulled out one vial of what had to be several hundred of antidote.
He explained that some people are just allergic to jellyfish. By this time I was quite frightened. He calmed me down, gave me an injection, and in a matter of about an hour, I was just fine.
It amazed me that something so small could make you that sick, and that something even smaller could make you better.
I was grateful for the antidote.
But unfortunately, my mother-in-law still thought I was a wimp.
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