I have a question for the scientifically informed hive-mind:
Why is it that no matter what I do, I end up with a head-cold by a few days after Thanksgiving?
Back when I was doing the frightening make-fifteen-dishes-to-bring-to-the-potluck Thanksgivings (with graduate classes and teaching and research in the background), I could kind of understand the sneezy fallout as a natural consequence of too little sleep and too much stress. Whose immune system wouldn’t strike back against such rough treatment?
Similarly, when the kids were smaller and they brought home every exotic virus they could from daycare, it made sense that some of these would be new to my immune system as well.
But this year, the kids were gone for a week. The stuff I made for Thanksgiving dinner at Uncle Fishy’s house was easy to bang out quickly. I slept more during Thanksgiving week than I do some months — I was practically a house cat!
And still, by Sunday I was sick. Green tea and DayQuil are what holds me together in some semblance of a functioning academic.
Could it be that my immune system is relatively insensitive to things like sleep, stress, and nutrition? Could it be that my immune system is entrained by the changing of the seasons, either the change in amount of sunlight, or average temperature, or amount of rainfall, or all three? Is there some other plausible explanation for my post-Thanksgiving head-cold besides a regularly scheduled dip in my immune capacity?
Or does the universe just have it in for me?