by Anton Crocek

My mother had always insisted that colds were caused by getting your feet wet, going without a scarf, and leaving the house with open pores after a shower. Even when I showed her my schoolbooks explaining it was all about virus particles sailing out of someone's nose and landing in yours, she brushed them aside. "Just look how those Kuchinsky kids all run around without galoshes, their coats unbuttoned, and each nose running with snot." To prove her scientifically and definitively wrong, I stood in a steaming shower till my pores were wide enough to stuff pimentos in, then set off around the block in the snow dressed only in damp pajamas. Halfway around the block I met one of the Kuchinsky kids, playing outside in his stocking feet and dripping nose, who asked what the heck I was doing. When I explained about my open pores, Kuchinsky the Snotty leaned in for a good look and blasted me square in the face with a sneeze.


Anton Crocek is the pen name of Ren Dexter who needs to remain anonymous.