Thursday, November 3, 2011

Dust Mites Must Die

I have always had an allergic reaction to dust mites. The dust mites themselves are infinitessimally small and infinitessimally gross. They crawl; they're alive. They make me sneeze in an ongoing succession that rivals the sound of a locomotive.

But after almost a year I was still joyfully free of allergy attacks. Perhaps there were no dust mites in York?

And then suddenly, as we hit our one year anniversary of our little experiment abroad, bam. The dust mites moved in. They must have been migrating here.

Coming to find me.

From America.

I'm no purveyor of conspiracy theories. But consider the facts: one year of dust-mite free living. Every season, no dust mites. Now, the dust mites are building paved roads in my nose. They're digging trenches and they're settling in for the long battle.

Today, as Tyler and I had a playdate, small drops of mucus continually fell from my nose--even right after I had blown it. When allergy attacks strike and I do not have a playdate, I am able to expertly stuff wads of tissue up my nose to prevent the mucus drops from exiting freely--No Skydiving Allowed. But during playdates, or any public appearances, it's hard to discern which is the worse sin: tissue wads in the nose or mucus drops.

Dust Mites love that I feel this ongoing tension. It's a fact little known about Dust Mites that, although they are infinitesimally small, they have enormous brains (comparative to their body sizes, that is). Their brains are extremely advanced, and unlike us humans, Dust Mites use all of their brain capacity.

Trust me; I know. Because I can hear the infinitesimally quiet laughter of the Dust Mites when they watch me battle impropriety.

Oh, really, your daughter is struggling with sleep as well? [mucus droplet, mucus droplet, drop, drop, droplet]

Dust Mites love this. They laugh like I'm Jerry Seinfeld doing stand-up.

To date, Dust Mites have been winning the war in the last few weeks. But they don't know some things. For instance, they don't know that I have been writing a novel entitled Dust Musts Must Die. (Dust Mites, while possessing massive brains, cannot read because they have no eyes. This works in my substantial favor as a writer.)

Dust Mites Must Die is a very serious novel about a single Dust Mite named Finley who decides to betray his clan and befriend the boy who suffers tragically at the hands of the Dust Mite Bullies with No Hearts and Surely with No Empathy (but Possessing Massive Brains).

Dust Mites Must Die could be the most amazing thing I've ever written. It could be the most amazing thing anyone, anywhere, has ever written. Because, see, the whole novel is written in Latin. (I did this just in case Dust Mites ever evolve and develop eyes and are able to read English. I want this novel to withstand the test of Time, and so even if Dust Mites learn to read, it's highly improbable that they'll learn Latin as well.)

I was recently contacted by the estate owner of Leo Tolstoy's literary property. It seems that the estate owner has been planning a new edition of Tolstoy's classic War and Peace. (New chapters have been found, albeit with small smudges across them.) The estate owner asked if I would consider including a small selection from Dust Mites Must Die in the new, revised version of War and Peace.

These were the estate owner's exact words, actually:

"Dear Sir Reynolds,

Word has come along the winds, carried no doubt on the backs of a million infinitesimally small backs of Dust Mites, that you have a novel in the works entitled Dust Mites Must Die. I would be deeply honored if you would consider including a small selection of this novel in the upcoming War and Peace. The Leo-nator, my affectionate name for Senor Tolstoy, had a lifelong vendetta against those creatures. Even when he gave away all his land to his servants, and sought to emulate the life of Christ, he could never learn to love Dust Mites. I think he would very much like knowing your novel is joined, in part, to his.


Jonathan Jon-Jon, Estate Owner"

As you can imagine, receiving a letter like this was stunning.

However, I need some time to mull it all over. After all, I still have to finish the novel (which is currently at 280,000 words, and I've only just completed the second chapter.)

If I keep going at this rate, Dust Mites may develop eyes before the work is ever complete. And that cannot happen.

So while mucus droplets still fall freely from my nose, the sneezes shout loudly and defiantly, I will not lie down.

(Because then the droplets will merely slide back into my throat, and that is disgusting.)

No, nor will I go gentle into that treacherous night. Instead, I will rage against the dying of my dignity, and I will finish Dust Mites Must Die, even if my fingers become stubs and my keyboard a mess.

I will finish, no matter what.

Dust Mites Everywhere Who Have Already Developed Eyes: consider yourselves warned.