Everyone gets them and you know deep down that war and famine are more pressing global issues than your blocked nose, yet a cold can often feel like the WORST THING IN THE WORLD.
Pour yourself a Lemsip with added self-pity and rest assured it will all be over eventually, as the common cold nearly always follows this simple schedule...
1. Somebody close to you informs you that they have a cold.
Your words say you wish them better, your eyes say "why are you breathing your germs within 70 feet of me you unspeakably selfish bastard?".
2. You feel......pretty damn great.
Maybe you shouldn't have been so mean about sharing your water with sneezey Debbie? You clearly have an amazing immune system and the office sickness is no match for you.
3. But then that first sneeze comes.
It's not like an allergic sneeze or a "has someone thrown pepper in the air?" sneeze. This one feels.....more than that.
4. And, to quote Ron Burgundy, it escalates quickly.
5. You're still convinced this can be beaten with orange juice though. All of the orange juice.
6. Friends realise you need something stronger.
Lemsip becomes your wine. This was not the night out you had planned.
7. Somehow you misjudge the powdery paracetamol final gulp. EVERY. DAMN. TIME.
Has a sachet of Lemsip ever fully dissolved? The way it goes from sweet warm lemony goodness to pure phenylephrine powder is just mean.
8. You don't cancel your plans - yet - you still think you can style this out.
9. But soon it's worse than ever. You're pretty certain that every cell in your body is wailing in unison.
10. You're probably dying.
You can feel your wrist bones. You're aware of every single muscle fibre in your ankles. It's like you can feel all of the world's pain concentrated into every single one of your joints. What did you do to deserve this?
11. Sympathy is non-existent. You start to contemplate if your loved ones even care at all.
"Oh that cold that's going round? I had that last week." You did?! THEN WHY DON'T YOU UNDERSTAND THE INHUMANITY OF IT ALL?!
12. You check the daytime TV schedule and become more depressed than you were already.
13. But by the end of the second day of trashy viewing you're kinda.....hooked.
You seriously contemplate setting up most of ITV2's programming on series link so that you can watch it in the evenings when you do eventually go back to work.
14. You turn a corner. Could you really be.....*whispers*.....getting better?
You're definitely a bit wasted on Beechams but you're no longer googling ebola symptoms. You could probably dance if you had to. You could probably dance well.
15. Being better must be kept a secret for as long as possible.
16. Then you get to have the 'good sick day'.
The one where you're better really, but you can actually enjoy lazing on the sofa and eating junk all day.
17. You finally rejoin society.
18. And now you get to be a dick when the people you infected come crawling for sympathy.