The Pox

It seems that the dreaded chicken-pox has finally hit the Doghouse, with The Destroyer now rocking so many spots he looks like the rubber surround on a drunk man’s dartboard. I was all up for gathering together all our belongings into a bonfire out the back garden, before digging out a pot of spare red paint and daubing a large ‘X’ over the front door to warn away visitors. But ‘seemingly’ according to The Roobs, this is an over-reaction and the wee man is perfectly fine.

Well, considering that the majority of pox is congregating around the poor wee fellow’s ‘Gentleman’s Arrangement’ making his privates look like he’s been thumbing his toodle into an active beehive, I would like to think that most of the other fathers out there would agree that it’s not bloody fine!

But as time has passed it seems my darling wife is once again proven right. The Destroyer is showing no real ill effect from looking like a pin cushion in a care home’s recreational room and is still running around like a maniac, seeing how many things he can smash his head against before he starts seeing little blue cartoon birds like they do in the cartoons.

He is however itching a fair bit late at night, and despite my suggestion of duct-taping a pair of 12lb boxing gloves on him when he goes to bed, I instead was sent out into the cold dark evening to find some form of soothing balm that we could plaster over the pox and relieve his itching.

My journey took me to the pharmacy desk of a large chain brand chemist, where I was greeted by the ‘dead behind the eyes’ glare of a teenage assistant who clearly wished they were anywhere else than being stuck here facing a wildly grinning and charasmatic beast with a magnificent moustache.

“Why hello sir! Hopefully you can help me!” I’m one of those horrible people that becomes obnoxiously over-friendly when faced by rude indifference, “I require some aid in finding a suitable lotion, or balm if you will, that will calm the burning aches of a pox riddled toddler crotch!”

I was met with a blank stare. Well, even more blank and empty than the one that faced me when I first arrived, before a handful of alcopop soaked brain cells fired up and sprang a reply into the young gentlemans’ head.

“Uh.. Wait here.” And with that he was gone, dragging his feet toward the rear section to speak to the pharmacist, who was busying herself smashing her way through what looked like a cheese and ham sandwich. With a final longing look, the pharmacist set down her sandwich and waddled over to the counter.
“What kind of pox do you mean sir?” I was trying very hard not to be distracted by the segment of ham that was clinging to the side of her mouth unnoticed by anyone but me.

“The chicken kind! My wife’s a bit concerned about the wee fella-” She turned away as I was mid sentence, pointed to a random box on a shelf and shot off back to her half eaten sandwich, “-But I’m just impressed that he matches the curtains!”

My attempt at humour had fallen flat on this gormless youth. Clearly unless it’s delivered in under six seconds over a Snapchat format, nothing is bloody funny these days.

The ‘yoof’ grabbed the nondescript box from the shelf, scanned it then threw it into a small bag before mumbling, “£10.99 please.”

I could feel the rage rising up my neck as he held his hands out expectantly, with a look on his stupid face that told me he was about ten seconds away from making that ‘Ugh’ sound that teenagers have perfected.

“Tell me young man, have I mistakenly walked into some kind of mystery auction here? For all I know you’ve put a tub of Veet in that bag, and the last thing I need is the extra chemical incentive to lose more hair! Pray tell exactly what am I paying a tenner for here?”

He stared at me for a second as his lower jaw hung a bit loose, while his hand slowly went into the bag and pulled out the box inside.

“Uh, it’s for chicken pox? It’s a gel that helps with their itching?” Each damned syllable that escaped his mouth sounded like he was trying to explain nuclear physics to a five year old. I was raging by this point, but it would hardly seem wise to pick up a teenager and shot-putt him through the nearby display of Mango scented shampoo bottles. Plus, by now there were two or three tutting pensioners behind me, jangling their coin purses in mild disgust having to wait for more than three bloody seconds to be served.

I was in a proper huff now;

“Well, you can just stick that right up your- Uh.. ‘On the shelf there, for I’ll be taking my custom elsewhere this fine day!” and with a flourish of my hips I spun round and flounced my way out of the store, with a final defiant;

“I BID YOU GOOD DAY SIR!”

That dramatic exit was purely for the benefit of the pensioners behind me. I probably put them in mind of a more magnificent ‘40’s movie star Clark Gable as I strode out of that chemist, with my shopping bag hanging out my back pocket and flapping against my ass like some kind of buttock cape.

So the upshot is I have managed to buy nothing for the wee man’s chicken pox, and instead will be visiting the local chemist where not only do you get a bit of banter from the staff, but they probably will take the time to at least explain what the concoction they’re stuffing into the wee brown bag for me actually does.

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