Yet Another Journal

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» Thursday, April 04, 2002
They ought to post signs down here at this time of year: "Welcome to the Annual Pollen Festival. Please hold your breath."

This is the time when you wake up in the morning gasping for air. Your joints hurt, your sinuses hurt. You swallow allergy pills, use nose spray and even take aspirin as the symptoms are darn near like the flu. Even the dog sneezes after she sniffs the ground. (One year the "Pollen Festival" got so bad our previous dog, Leia, couldn't make it up the steps to our apartment without stopping halfway to wheeze and sneeze.)

The most visible is the bright yellow pine pollen, which at times is so thick it forms thin drifts on the street and the hoods and roofs of cars and swirls when the wind blows. Anything outside for a period of time develops a yellowish cast. According to the allergists, since the pine pollen is visible, it's "too big" to affect allergies. Yeah, right. It's dust, isn't it? It may not be affecting you as pollen does, but it's sure doing so as dust does.