Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Attention : Entry for Staph Only......

I don't really blame you.

When I first heard about Staph Aureus, I thought it was a brother of Aurora Borealis. But very glamorous as these may sound, I consider it my duty as a serious concerned citizen, to inform everyone, that Aureus and Borealis are as different as hell and heaven respectively.

Not that I have any personal experience. Of heaven and hell, that is. But still. In these economically uncertain times , one can speculate.

While Aurora Borealis is all about heavenly lights in the northern skies, and something to gladden the eyes, Staph is all about being a bacteria, with the impressive name of Staphylococci Aureus, and entering here and there, dangerously, surreptitiously, unlawfully, and with dedicated bad intention.

Almost like a terrorist.

Smitten as it is, by the human body, it simply ignores the God given apertures and openings that every normal being is known to have. Looks for little cuts and breaks, nooks and folds, where it can burrow in, unnoticed. And so it is ecstatic, when it finds, that little cut on your palm, that you ignored while cutting raw mangoes for pickle as you sat watching your favourite TV serial. I suppose even Staphs find the mango season irresistible.

Once inside , Staph simply runs haywire.

Almost like a terrorist.

Hoards of body commandos gear up to fight Staph. But Staph works in devious ways. It manages to get together with other Staphs, who, similarly indoctrinated about human blood, have also managed to enter. Massive encounters between the commandos and the Staphs. Fights. Conflagrations at the top of the skin. Lots of debris and destruction lying around. The commandos try different tactics, aided by the newly inducted Antibiotic Corps. Some signs of success . But some Staphs may still be hiding somewhere.

Just like the terrorist.

Four days of Staph. The skin rises in a crescendo on the palm. Shades of red and purple. Things flowing here and there inside. Like 26/11, it is painful to watch, and painstaking to fight. And early one morning, amidst the misleading quiet of a dawn, and the immense fatigue setting in, the commandos finally see an opening . On the surface of the swelling. And throw out stuff . Through a pinhole.

Just like the final dead 26/11 commando thrown out of the Taj window, to complete the terrorist count.

The mopping up operations are on. Its almost like minor surgery . Dead and useless (t)issues are cut and thrown out. Medicated comfort sets in. Some kind of fine poking around is necessary to ensure that every nook and cranny of the palm is covered, and that's painful. Some things need to be covered till they heal. Wallowing in the care of concerned fingers, careful antiseptic washing and patting with clean therapeutic thought. The palm needs to be kept away from things for some period of time. In its normal hanging position,with the lymph and blood types rushing there, just like visitors crowding a patient, it is painful. So you are advised to try and hold it up , against the heart , supporting, as it were.

Just like the remaining staff of the
Taj did, for the Taj, in the aftermath of the 26/11.

And so we come to the "staff".

We Indians, love to put up instructional notices . Particularly in public sector/education sector/government type places, in
environments which are not-so-corporate

Except its always for "staff" and not "Staph". Thanks to the US English, we can now pronounce both, the same way.

"Attention : Only staff allowed ". (I can't see who is checking)

"No admission without permission" ( i have always felt the originator was onomatopoeically super enabled...)

"No entry: Trespassers will be prosecuted" (Where and when ? Still waiting)

"No thoroughfare" (wont know where this road goes till I try....)

"Restricted Entry : Staff Only"

The best part is that one reads, and one goes ahead. Sometimes, one doesn't read, and still goes ahead. ....

I have wandered freely, in various places like airport innards (where airline offices are), insurance company archives ( where two guys at a darkened desk amidst the file racks sold revenue stamps that I needed on an application, for double the cost), and the Mumbai University Examination Section (while following up on a request for my son's degree certificate while he was in the US.)

Nobody stopped me.

Maybe I look like staff. Or even Staph ?

Sometimes I think the Deadly Staph Aureus probably saw the last sign. "Restricted Entry : Staff Only".

It must have derisively laughed at the spelling abilities of the Homo Sapiens, studded with all those cells, acting superior.

Then it decided to do what I do.

Just venture in .

Serves me right, I guess.

(Blogged while coming out of a mean looking staph infection on the palm. I have pictures. But will not put them here as this is a family type blog. And I need the thing to heal fast.

So I sit, one hand bandaged impressively, while the other stirs the solar cooked mango Chunnda preserves, which I need to get ready before I attend a "sizzling" bloggers' lunch.....in a few days....
The lunch is supposed to sizzle, not the bloggers :-)


  1. First and foremost, hope the pain has abated. And you are getting better.

    I cant imagine someone can write such a fantafabulous post or something like a bacteria infection!
    Hats off to your imagination and your way with words!! Loved it...

    And again best wishes for a speedy recovery!

  2. Sorry a typo...that was 'on something' and not 'or something' in the 2nd sentence!!

  3. Aww, hope you are feeling better. And (double Aww!) you're going for a blogger's lunch! Reminds me of the one I missed... well, have fun. Hope the Chhunda turns out yummy!

  4. I met Spaph Aureus some time ago. Not a pleasant encounter. I do hope you are feeling better now.

    On the subject of Indian notices, I am still in awe of the one in Chennai airport that says something like "disabled people and politicians only" :)

  5. fantastic post!! Was almost holding my breath at the climax!!

  6. Hope you are feeling better !! And i cant imagine the force you have gathered to write such a post in such pain...


  7. You really are a dedicated blogger to be typing with an infected palm. I would use that as an excuse for a 'time out'.

    I hope your infection is gone now and all those nasty staph terrorists have been vanquished.

    (Clever analogy -staph bacteria and terrorists.)

  8. SGD Thank you. Everytime there is some kind of trouble like this (not often), I learn so many new things. And it helps in the healing if you get irreverent about it in a post .....:-)

    RajkThank you and triple Aww. The good part is its the left hand, and the Chunndo manufacture goes ahead with the right. And the blog, with the "write"..... Blogging is very therapeutic. So are blog lunches. :-)

    Helene H The Staph certainly doesnt go happily. i am just glad the thing is on its way out. And that Chennai sign makes me laugh. Anyway can look like a politician. And walk through the partucular place. ....

    Roshni Thank you. Staph. Receding slowly. Chunndo. Coming along well. Hopefully everything reaches a decent conclusion by Saturday, when we have a bloggers lunch. It just amazes me though that in these days of fancy targetted drug delivery stuff using nano things etc, these Staphy types still manage to torment....

    Kavi Like I said in the post, a hand held vertical is painful . Very . What better place than a horizontal resting place next to the keyboard :-) . Besides, look at the good things. Its the left hand. So right handed blogging zindabad .. and it keeps your mind away from the pain...:-)

    Darlene Many years later someone will write a paper in a fancy journal about "Effects of blogging therapy on Staph infections in geriatric populations in Asia.". Remember, thats me :-)

  9. Nice analogy.Hope the staph has been properly eliminated.Wish you a speedy recovery and when and where is the blogger's lunch?am I invited?mango Chunnda ?sounds yummy.any way you were too modest to mention the use of a street corner as public toilet with bold letters on the wall saying 'yahan kutte p..... karte hain' and the male population suddenly becomes illiterate and pee right there.

  10. Trust you to make true the old adage: Laughter is the best medicine!!! Hope the staph are behaving properly now.

  11. HHG Yes, the Staph Army is in retreat. Thank you. And yes , the lunch is tomorrow, Saturday. R u in Mumbai ? We'd love to have you. The more the merrier...

    SucharitaActually, blogging is a type of medicine. Works. And hopefully I have shamed the Staphs into leaving....will know by tomorrow :-)