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Apparently I was a little too close to some flu victims on the BART subway train last week. I noticed there were several people coughing and I heard one sneeze nearby but they weren’t immediately next to me so I didn’t think there was much exposure to what ever it was they had, if anything. However, apparently I was mistaken, as I so often am, and three days ago I was feeling glummer than usual. Usually I feel quite happy so feeling even a little bit glum is very apparent in my world perception.

At first this glumness didn’t feel like a cold or a flu because it was just a distant feeling that things were not quite right. I did my usual things and my blogs are reasonably upbeat although the noise of the world was more annoying than usual so that bum subject, The curse of modern civilization is noise,was that day’s blog.  But because things weren’t quite right it seemed that a hot bath might be appropriate, following the dictates of my blog, Cure the common cold with 102°F voluntary fevers. That wasn’t entirely appropriate for the physical feelings I was having because I didn’t have an itchy throat or the beginnings of a fever. So this bath was more of a pleasure bath but I did run my temperature up to 102°F as a precautionary measure. It is easy to do and it can’t hurt. I raise my voluntary fever to that higher temperature for only a couple of minutes and after hitting it I get out of the hot bath immediately and cool down to completely normal temperature in about a half hour.

The next morning I felt a little bit worse and had a touch of fever and chills sensation. It wasn’t anything anyone else would notice, not even a doctor taking my symptoms, but I felt them so I took another bath as above. Early in the evening I was having a bit of fever and chill feeling again even though my temperature was still 97.2°F which is lower than most people’s temperature but normal for me. I took another hot bath.

This morning when I got up I had a definite bit of itchy throat and a little of the fever and chill feeling so it appeared I was in fact exposed to a standard cold and had succeeded in suppressing the disease to a very mild condition. This is exactly what the hot baths are intended to do — to suppress symptoms by alerting the body’s disease fighting defences to go on the alert and hold back the disease while the antibodies are being created to kill the infecting organism. This procedure doesn’t kill the flu it only suppress it. It takes a couple of days for the body to learn how to make the exact antibodies needed and thus to become effective.

This evening I wasn’t feeling any particular symptoms but I took a hot bath and I will take at least one hot bath tomorrow even if I don’t feel any symptoms. I do at least one hot bath for two days after the last infectious itchy-fever-chill feeling has gone away. One time I stopped taking the hot bath immediately after symptoms eased up but the next day the cold came back so now I do two more. It’s so easy and even pleasurable and it’s the end of the symptoms.

At no time in this whole episode did I manifest any symptoms that anyone else could have observed and I doubt if I was infectious because you have to be putting out some sneeze phlegm or some snot on the hand. I didn’t have any of that and no fever in public. So, I have hope to be totally normal in a couple of days.

I have done something very new and unusual during the hot bath procedure for the last couple of years. I have drunk about 2¼ ounces of vodka after I reach the body temperature of 102°F. I used to drink it straight, neat, after measuring it into a cup but after considering that the hot burning sensation might be telling my body that it wasn’t such a good idea I have diluted it, 1 vodka to 4 water. The reason for the dilution is that it eliminates the burning sensation. There is a reported association between drinking alcohol and mouth cancer, throat cancer and stomach cancer so why take any unnecessary chance? I am taking the alcohol because it might help dissolve any plaque that has built up in my arteries. At the dilution of alcohol in the blood that would be a very slow process but doing it a couple of times per year might be all that is needed. I am not recommending this and only saying that I am doing it. It is just a personal experiment.