The Graveyard

The Lair Of Gary James

TMI Tuesdays

Posted by BigWords on October 19, 2010

WARNING – this post is going to have material which may make you feel nauseous, grossed out, or potentially make you lose the contents of your stomach all over your computer. Walk away now if you don’t think you can handle the blow-by-blow account of my Monday.

… seriously.

…I’m not joking.

I did warn you.

As I pointed out on Twitter on Sunday evening, I have been busy trying to get as much of the art for my NaNoWriMo comic done as possible. One of the techniques I have been using is pastels and charcoals for background elements, but this requires fixative spray – otherwise the image would get very smudged, very quickly. So here’s something that people don’t often mention when they talk about art, as it tends to put people off the idea of creating – there are some substances used in art which have a negative impact on the user, and can slow down output to a standstill. The use of fixative spay in an enclosed area is one of the things which will completely knock you off your feet if you aren’t careful.

Monday morning.


The waves of nausea were hitting hard, and it felt as if there was something moving around in my stomach desperately seeking an exit. The bloated, horrible feeling of knowing that something is wrong, but not knowing exactly what. I tried to drink a coffee, but the taste was off – it wasn’t even the rich stuff, so I know that the coffee wasn’t to blame. This was around the time when the headache kicked in, and a fuzzy feeling, as if there was something just out of my peripheral vision. This wasn’t like a hangover – I’ve had plenty of those, and this was entirely different in the level of accompanying confusion.

Oh, and there was a tingling all over my skin which was really weird. My fingertips were numb at this point as well. Not sure why, but I felt as if I was burning up at this point – a feeling which would continue all through the day. I spent the entire day wearing just jeans and a t-shirt, but I really felt as if my temperature had rocketed into the stratosphere.


Everything that comes next is horrible, though in the interest of being completely honest and open, I’m going to go ahead and lay it out for you. The waves of nausea were kicking in hard, and a certain amount of disorientation and pain was beginning to set in. I’m guessing that the aerosol nature of the chemicals used in the spray were to blame for all my joints feeling as if they were being pulled apart, but this was soon to be forgotten as the back of my throat started burning. The simultaneously bitter and sharp taste of acid hit out of nowhere, then got worse as I staggered to the bathroom, whereupon the previous night’s meal made an unwelcome reappearance.

This was mostly chunks of meat, and the sensation of the small (and some not so small) pieces banging off the top of my mouth was enough to make me nearly choke. See, I did warn you I wasn’t going to hold back. Oh, and while it is still (all too) fresh in my mind, I may as well point out that the thin watery stuff which was simultaneously streaming from my nose stung like hell. This was around the time I started thinking that death would be a merciful release from the seemingly endless torment, but no… There was, much, much worse to come.


If the chunky stuff was bad, then the liquid ejecta was ten times worse. I pulled a chipmunk face, desperately trying not to release it all over the room, and barely managed to make it into the bathroom before my face gave up any attempt to contain the mess. It felt as if there was liters and liters of the too-warm and too sickly-smelling stuff coming up, wave after wave of it threatening to drown me if I passed out. The ‘cloudy’ feeling, which I can only describe as one of disorientation, managed to completely obliterate my hand-eye coordination at this point, leaving me to try and stabilize myself by holding onto the wall. Aiming my face in the general direction of the bowl wasn’t of utmost concern at this point – staying conscious was.

Oh, and the smell. The chunky stuff earlier in the morning was practically odorless, yet the liquid stank the place out. If I hadn’t already been sick on an epic scale, then that would have driven me to another bout of retching.

For the rest of the day I was completely worn out. It was as if all of my muscles had lost the ability to move. I’m still achy, and the headache hasn’t gone away, though having both art and words together for NaNo seems even remoter than ever.


6 Responses to “TMI Tuesdays”

  1. amkuska said

    You did it to yourself too eh? I sprayed fixative on a hoodie I decorated…thought I let it air out…and then got into an enclosed vehicle with it.


    I know the feeling.

  2. Heiddi Zalamar said

    Well, take it as a lesson learned. Glad you survived that! Sounds like the mother of all hangovers/flus/colds combined. lol

  3. Amy said

    Lord, that was… descriptive. I had flashbacks to freshman year of college.

    My mom is an artist, and used to work in her teeny studio all day with a) a kerosene space heater running (no windows), and b) turpentine in small open containers all over the place. She couldn’t even smell it by 10 am, but it was eye-wateringly awful to anybody else.

  4. bigwords88 said

    I think it was because I haven’t used the stuff in so long that it hit so hard. There really is an immunity you can build up – I desperately need a larger space to be playing with dangerous chemicals…

  5. This blogisode makes me adore you. It earns you a place on my blogroll. Congrats!

    Also, from one regular pukerist to another…sounds like me with a migraine. Srsly. TMI? Ah, it’s that kinda day.

  6. bigwords88 said

    Thank you. I have learned my lesson. There may be other TMI posts in the future, but not because of my own stupidity. 😀

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