Call me Typhoid Mary

I do have this annoying habit of getting things wrong. Not, I hope, when I’m doing research and writing articles – no, that would be publishing suicide. No, in general life, I’m usually the last to know or realise what’s happening or what I’ve done wrong now. I guess I’m just a bit of a ‘blunderer through life’ really. I bumble around until I go bump into something and find out I shouldn’t have gone bump into it at all.

This comes back to me now after my last post where I mockingly talked about my Typhoid symptoms and my hypochondria but predicted I actually just had a virus.

Wishful thinking.😦

It seems it was Typhoid fever all along and it is likely that when I went into school last week moaning miserably to all who would hear (and quite a few who wouldn’t) that “feel like death” because of my cold and all the while I may have passing the nasties to everyone.

To be fair, it’s already going around. We’ve had one teacher down with it for several weeks and he’s finally coming back to life and (hopefully) back to work next week. There’s rumours another teacher might be having the same symptoms though I can’t substantiate that. The trouble is, Typhoid is just a really nasty, nasty little devil because it takes so long to make it’s mark. Hence the terrible story of “Typhoid Mary”.

Typhoid Mary

Mary Mallon was a perfectly healthy woman when a health inspector knocked on her door in 1907 and informed her she was the cause of umpteen Typhoid outbreaks. Indeed, she continued being perfectly healthy until she suffered a stroke in 1932 and was confined to her bed until she died  six years later. Different reports vary on their opinion about whether Mary was a victim or an evil woman.

She never believed she had Typhoid because no one really bothered to explain to her the concept of a “healthy carrier” – in fact she was the first one for Typhoid in America ever discovered; but not the only one. Some claim that because she was an Irish woman, a domestic servant and had no family (as well as a mean temper – duh, Irish – go figure) that she was deliberately used as a scapegoat and forced to live in an isolated cottage on North Brother Island, New York.

Also, all the Typhoid outbreaks occurred after she had left places of work as the house cook so she never saw that this was connected to her. Alas, that’s the problem with Typhoid – you can carry it for a while and spread it around but until the fever comes you don’t know it’s there. She never got the fever.

Poor Mary.

However, she fought her case and eventually won the right to get off the island as long as she never worked as a cook again. This is where sympathy wanes a little. She left in 1910. Five years later another Typhoid outbreak occurred at the Sloane Maternity Hospital in Manhattan. Twenty-five became ill and two died. The recently-hired cook, Mrs Brown, was discovered to be none other than our Typhoid Mary. She was swiftly apprehended and sent back to the island.

Poor Mary?

I don’t know, rightly or wrongly we now often refer to a friend of colleague who is evidently sick as Typhoid Mary. Her name lives on in common usage though, of course, her cooking doesn’t.

So, I’m going to make sure I take my time to get better. I want this nasty out of my system and not hanging around me or my gang any longer. After all, I don’t want anyone calling me “Typhoid Ken”…😦

The teacher is out…

Believe it or not, writing these posts is taking hours and very wearying in my current state of health (this one took me two days). The next couple of posts will be reblogs I think you’ll like to give me chance to recover. The series on ‘Interview with a Teenager’ will continue once I’m able again to look at my notes and make coherent sense of them! K

About D K Powell

British freelance journalist, author, writer, editor, musician, educational consultant. I lived with Wifey, Thing I (daughter) & Thing II (son) in Bangladesh for 5-6 years working for an NGO called LAMB. Wifey led the Hospital Rehab department and I used to teach O levels at the school before going full-time as a freelance writer in 2013. Now we're back in the UK learning how to be British again. When not writing or editing, I'm busy trying to complete a Masters degree in Intercultural relations in Asian Contexts and reading way too many books at once. I also drink tea - lots of it.
This entry was posted in Education, Life and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to Call me Typhoid Mary

  1. Ohmygoodness! As others have said, please take care of yourself and don’t worry about blogging! Sending you healthy and healing thoughts.

    Like

  2. Anonymous says:

    Feel better soon Ken😦
    Sending healing thoughts your way.

    Like

  3. Sending you healing vibes in Bangladesh from the belly of the beast. As the previous commenter says, I hope that you get a lot of rest. It’s essential for the healing process. Take care Ken.

    Like

  4. Ruby Tuesday says:

    I had never actually heard the story of “Typhoid Mary”, though I had heard of her. Very interesting.

    Rest up, take care if yourself, and don’t fret about your blog. We’ll still be here when you’re well.

    Sending you lots of magical healthy particles across the miles. . .

    Like

    • I hope I catch them Ruby, thank you🙂 I hadn’t heard her story either! In fact, when I began to research the facts I was expecting some wild west outlaw to be the source! I personally feel very sorry for the woman but I’m not sure I would have done anything different to what the authorities did.

      Like

  5. boomiebol says:

    Feel well soon Ken

    Like

  6. I hope you feel better soon Typhoid Ken😉
    He he.. But really.. Take some time to get better *hugs*

    Like

  7. Sounds a bit ominous!! I’ve noticed that whenever I joke about something rather bad happening, it usually does! A lesson I’ve learned! I’m very glad you’re feeling better. However I’d take advantage of it and get a sleeping overdose. A good rest is always the best remedy.🙂

    Like

    • I’m doing my best Marina. The problem is my fever gets worse in the evening just before I take my next dose of pills. That means the fever drops a couple of hours later and BING I’m awake because I’ve been doing so much sleeping during the day! It’s a catch-22 that I must confess is driving me a little bit insane!

      Like

Over to you! What do YOU think? Comment here...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s