Normally, our Monday meetings are uneventful and full of uninteresting facts that most definitely don’t pertain to anyone in the proofreading department (see doodle to on left). All attendees receive a copy of the agenda and our supervisor goes over each one and, if anyone has anything to say, it is addressed.
But for the most part we all want to get out of there so we can get back to work and, more often than not, there are no questions at the end of them.
That was until today and let me tell you, it wasn’t the day for to ask questions.
I think it was about halfway through the meeting when I took a sip from my water bottle and, as the saying goes, some of it went down the wrong pipe. I started coughing but tried to keep it to a minimum so as not to disrupt the meeting in progress, which continued with me still pretending everything was fine – but still coughing.
My throat started to feel as if it were swelling as the meeting continued to drag on. There was no amount of coughing that I felt would clear my throat and get things back to normal and keeping them under control was becoming difficult. In fact, my eyes started to water as I held back coughing.
The meeting still went on without me thinking to excuse myself. As it did (and I coughed slightly but not enough to relieve the discomfort), my eyes started to water even more. Naturally, as this started to happen, my nose began to run.
No, I didn’t have any tissue on me. Why do you ask?
So now I’ve got watery eyes and I’m hoping nobody can see my nose beginning to run. I clearly felt it but tried to play it off. Fortunately, all eyes seemed to be on the supervisor so nobody saw too much of it or my attempts to keep the mucus inside. Those attempts failed, by the way.
So with all of this going on, what else could possibly go wrong?
That’s right: Mother Nature started to call and with a bullhorn. So now I’m coughing, I’ve got a runny nose and I’ve really gotta pee.
The meeting is just about ready to wrap up and I’m about to sprint to the door and head into the kitchen to grab a napkin and solve my runny nose issue. But that was not to be.
As is the custom, our supervisor asked if anybody had any other questions. Normally, that question is met with dead silence but on this day, with me practically choking on water, my nose running like mad and my bladder ready to explode, there was an abundance of them.
And all were met with deep sighs from everyone who had work to get done, the loudest sighs being from me who had a lot more on his mind than just work.
So finally, after the last question as asked, the meeting was adjourned and we all filed out. I ran straight to our office, grabbed some tissue, then ran to the bathroom to end the misery I had been experiencing for the last hour.
It may have been an hour but it seemed like an eternity as far as I’m concerned. It was just awful.