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» Karma

The Parasitic Karma Mobile
You'll need a bit of background for this story, and then a bit more, so bear with me a tic.

I have a few phobias. Mostly, they don't interfere with my life, unlike people who spend their existence cowering from spiders nonchalantly weaving webs and digesting flies. I fear geese (they're bloody evil, and they chase you) and wasps (they're bloody evil, and they chase you), and I fear parasites.

My sister once bought home hair lice from Brownie camp, and I wore a swimming hat and screamed at her if she came near me. I even adapted a stick to become the Sister Prodding Stick if she came too close.

Skip forward many years to when I was at university, in an appalling house with appalling people. One morning, I was up early, doing my coursework, and I casually scratched my scalp, as you do, and came back with a fingernail bulging with life.

I had lice.

If you want to understand just how upset I was, try to picture a grown woman, in her pyjamas, crying and trying to run away from her own head.

After I calmed down enough to form sentences, I practically ran to the pharmacists, and demanded poisons. NOW. The pharmacist asked me a few questions, which I answered in a frenzy. One of them was "do you have asthma?". When I answered yes, she sighed and shook her head. "I'm afraid I can't sell you the ten minute lotion then. You'll have to use the 12 hour one." I tried to convince her that I'd made a mistake, and I didn't have asthma at all (to hell with breathing when your head is holding a population equal to Chinas), but she was having none of it.

And so followed the longest twelve hours of my life, coated in poison, wearing a plastic tesco bag with it's handles over my ears to catch the cascade of dying parasites. I bought enough to treat all my housemates too, as I was mortified at bringing such a plague into our home.

Or I was, until my housemate's boyfriend muttered the famous line "Oh, well you can't have caught them off Carol, because she had them last week."

Such stunning logic floored me, and then enraged me as I realised she'd been infested and neglected to tell any of us.

I waited for her in the lounge, drenched in poison, wearing a tesco bag over my ears, full of a deep and terrible rage.

She came home, and I launched into an epic rant. She apologised, and I relented. Slightly. However, my final words were these:

"I can just about cope with you giving me hair lice. Just. But if you ever bring home scabies, I will fucking kill you where you stand. Do you understand me? I WILL KILL YOU WHERE YOU STAND."

Skip forward a week. A traumatic week of finding the bath coated with dead lice, burning my hairbrushes, and constantly searching my head to prove the plague had gone. I come home, and Carol is waiting for me in the hallway.

"Smell my skin." She says. It's not the most enticing offer, and I declined.

"Smell it." She insisted. I sighed, and gave her a tentative sniff. She smelt exceptionally toxic.

"I went to the doctors. I've got scabies. They've given me a lotion for us all to use."

For those of you that have never had scabies, the treatment for getting rid of colonies of repulsive creatures burrowing, shitting, screwing and making babies under your skin is to paint yourself from earlobes to ankles in toxic lotion, and then wait for 24 hours. There is no indignity quite like having to get someone to paint your arse with poison while you cry.

It was the worst twenty hour hours I've ever endured. I wept, I retched, I threw away all my bedding, and I had to tell my boyfriend that there was a very good chance tiny creatures were pooing in his skin.

So where's the karma?

Skip forward another week, and Carol has been back to the doctors for the results of her skin swab. The kicker?

She didn't have scabies at all. The stress of me threatening to "FUCKING KILL HER WHERE SHE STANDS" had bought her out in a psychosomatic rash, which had been diagnosed as scabies.

Oh how we laughed :(

There you go. Parasitic karma in action.
(Fri 22nd Feb 2008, 12:29, More)

» Bedroom Disasters

A perfect end to the night
A good few years back, me and the future Mr Smaldini lived together in a student house with several other miscreants. Mr Smaldini had a pokey room downstairs, riddled with fragments of broken computers and unwashed pants, so generally we slept together in my (larger, less Life Of Grime esque) room.

Cue his sister's wedding. Much alcohol was drunk. Much, much, much. My husband was thrown in a taxi after a member from Hearsay wandered into the hotel foyer, and Mr Smaldini affectionately called him Shrek, and demanded he sign his own hat. It all gets a bit hazy then, but I wake up downstairs in his room, with my comatose bloke asleep upstairs.

Assuming we've had an argument I simply don't recall, I hatch the cunning plan to sneak back into bed with him and pretend that nothing had happened - he's not going to remember a thing, after all. I remember feeling terribly smug about this deception. I was a drunken genius.

I made a terrible mistake. As I wake the next day, stuck to my bed, hair glued to my face, I realise that I had decided to sleep downstairs because he had, rather inconsiderately, puked all over my pillow.
(Wed 29th Jun 2011, 12:55, More)

» Crap Gadgets

QVC + weed = third degree burns.
Thankfully, this happened to friends of mine, and not yours truly. Way back when QVC was a new entity, filled with the siren call of useless gadgets, my friends embarked on an evening of heavy smoking and channel surfing, unfortunately paired with easy access to their credit cards.

So, it was inevitable really. They purchased a candy floss machine.

Several days later it arrives, and (once again) armed with an ample amount of pot and a minimal amount of sense, they fired up the machine. Scenes from films flashed before their eyes, children, happy, laughing children, swirling their hands inside machines filled with pink fluffy clouds of sugary heaven, fingers coming away dusted with light, sweet strands of joy.

Wrong. Think more along the lines of Apocalypse Now, the carnival years. It was, apparently, like plunging your hand into "a pink napalm machine".

That must have been a decade ago now, and I still chuckle about it every time I see QVC.
(Thu 29th Sep 2011, 17:22, More)