Monday, April 03, 2006


Last Wednesday, I thought I was getting a rash. By Friday it seemed to me that it was Erysipelis. I had it before, in April of last year, when I was getting chemo. It's this effing medieval disease, a staph infection of the face that used to be called St. Anthony's Fire. One of those skin things that can probably be cured by having the King of England lay his hands on you. Thank goodness it also responds to antibiotics.

Friday, the dermatologist prescribed antibiotics and by Saturday it had all but disappeared. Then by today, it had come back worse. So back to the doctor tomorrow. What I really need is someone to go in front of me with a leper bell telling people to avert their eyes. While I'm not there yet, something about the swelling and glossy red surface of the skin that this disease produces make people think 'Elephant Man.'

I figure my immune system is seriously weird these days, from whatever it is that gave me the relapse scare.

But I finished a draft of a new story. And to console myself for my hot, itchy, red and swollen face, I made more shortbread.


Blogger Gregory Feeley said...

So where's the digital camera you took the wig shots with?

April 03, 2006 9:22 PM  
Blogger Maureen McHugh said...

Oh yeah. I'm not going out in public, but I'm going to put my grossly deformed features on the web.

But for an idea of what it looks like, you can check

April 03, 2006 9:32 PM  
Blogger Karen Sandstrom said...

You know, I didn't want to put it in these terms, but ... Erin would have posted a photo. Not to, y'know, compare or anything. Just a thought. By the way, I hope you feel better. Also, I think the old name of this rash is way better than the new one. Meanwhile, I wish you more comfort than mere oatmeal baths can offer.

April 04, 2006 6:16 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, you get a medieval disease on Wednesday. Is Wednesday also when you made the medievally spiced shortbread?

Is there a connection?

Where is House when you need him?

April 04, 2006 9:17 AM  
Blogger Responsible Artist said...

I hope it's less painful than it looks. This is when I wish we lived in medieval times (the 40s) and could wear hats with veils.

April 04, 2006 11:12 AM  
Blogger Greg van Eekhout said...

Isn't there anyone you can sue?

April 04, 2006 11:28 AM  
Blogger Maureen McHugh said...

Yeah, I'm ready for a hat with a veil about now.

Nobody I can sue, I'm afraid. And the dermatologist is perplexed. So they are putting me on a killer antibiotic AND prednisone. And if I'm worse tomorrow, I go to the hospital for an antibiotic drip.

April 04, 2006 12:49 PM  
Blogger SquidgePa said...

Gak! I was on prednisone and heavy antibiotics for my pneumonia. I kept getting nose bleeds. Hope things clear up for you, Maureen.

April 04, 2006 2:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Aighhh! I hope you heal and feel more comfortable really quickly!

April 04, 2006 9:34 PM  
Blogger Madeleine Robins said...

Where is the King (or Queen) of England when you need him/her? Perhaps this calls for a trip to London to clear everything up?

April 05, 2006 2:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am not an animal!!!,.... I am a writer!
Glad your sense of humor is intact!

April 05, 2006 3:06 PM  
Blogger Maureen McHugh said...

Madeleine, does the Queen qualify? How about Prince William?

April 05, 2006 6:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Prince Charles apparently wants to do laying on of hands healing.

I think this would be terrific. For one thing, it would cure lots of psychological diseases -- apparently "The King's Evil", scrofula, has a high spontaneous remission rate. For another, it would provide a perfect answer to questions about what we keep the Royal Family around for.

I don't expect he makes house calls in the US though.

Jo Walton

April 06, 2006 9:48 AM  
Blogger Madeleine Robins said...

Perfect excuse to go on a field trip!

April 06, 2006 10:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

^^ nice blog!! ^@^

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