I’m allergic to fish. Gives me anaphylactic shock, like bee stings affect some people.
So, last night I went to a business meeting at Barnchurch after supper at home with Caution-Lady and Little Squall. The group normally eats an evening meal together every Wednesday night before the bible-study or before the business meeting. Because I still had some Weight Watchers points left (around eight of them) after my supper, I asked if I could help myself to some of the leftover food on the kitchen counter.
I got a sweet-roll that tasted like it had been made with pop or Kool-Aid, which was a surprise given the fact it looked like a cinnamon swirl with a hint of color rolled up in it. I got a cold, bready piece of pepperoni pizza that came from a supermarket. I took two of three remaining index-finger sized fried cheese-sticks. Common courtesy dictates that one should never take all that remains of an item. I ate the sweet roll first, because I wanted something sweet, while on my way to the table.
Sitting by Doros, the Barnchurch pastor, I took a bite of the first cheese-stick. It didn’t taste right. “Is this a fishstick?” I asked, “I’m allergic to fishsticks.” Doros responded by taking and eating the other one of what my half-witted palate had tentatively, belatedly identified as something with trace amounts of fish meat in it (the fishstick was exceedingly bland). I thought I might as well eat the rest of the fishstick I was holding. “I’ve got an epi-pen in the glove compartment of my car, if I start choking or fall over, just stab me with it.” Then we joked about my not having “one of those James Bond vzzzt-things” in the glove box. I made a fork with my right fore and middle fingers, jabbed at my chest, and said, “Vzzzt.” As the meeting got underway, after scripture reading and a prayer, I tore off and ate pieces of the pizza slice in an attempt to feed inconspicuously because I was the only one at the table eating.
I did notice an allergic reaction, slight swelling in my throat, slight pain in my chest, and what became by the time I got home a sharp headache and a feeling in my body like the smell of mercury from a smashed thermometer.
Although I’m not a member, I spoke up at the meeting. Honestly, I should have been born without a tongue in my head. The church voted (finally) to move into a building at Stepford that seems to be the most reasonable means of obtaining a breathing space as Barnchurch tries to figure out where it goes from here. Also, the group made another good decision.
Only on the drive home later did I recall the word defibrillator.