Talk of virus and the ravages of the China virus are all the news today but we’ve had pretty serious outbreaks caused by viruses in times past. One of those years was 1957. I don’t recall if it was given a specific name then but the flu was pretty rampant that fall. I know because I fell victim to it at a most inconvient time.
I was 15 and in prime health. I was the bmoc in jr. high and captain of the football team and had all the acclaim a 15 year old could want. In those days the local papers (we actually had two daily newspapers then) covered all the school sports including the jr. high sports. The high schools played on Friday nights and the jr. highs had games on Saturday because we had to share some of the fields. Both papers even had short recaps and comments about the jr. high games and it was always a thrill for us to see our name in the paper. I was fortunate that my name was there every week usually with a mention on both offense and defense. It was a big deal at that time. Our team that year was pretty good and we had a shot at the championship for the city. Then came late October or maybe very early in November and we were getting ready for our big rival game and one that might determine if we got to the championship game. Well old bozo here got sick in the middle of the week with that darn flu. Really sick. High fever, aches and total fatigue. Dad took me to the doc and he confirmed what we already knew that I had the flu. He of course recommended rest, fluids and aspirin. I don’t recall any medication. My coach was really down about it with the big game against our big rival boude storey only a day or so away. Well I missed the last two days of practice and just laid on the couch at home. Come Friday I was still really sick but dad and I wanted me to play the game. We checked with the doc once again and asked if playing would actually make me worse and he said probably not but it would delay my recovery and would be quite bad for me. But he didn’t say it would kill me. So the official line from me and my dad to mom and the coach was I could play if I didn’t get worse.
Well, of course I didn’t get “worse” in the next 24 hours. No way that was going to happen. So come Saturday I suited up and went to the game. I don’t remember much about the details of the game. I scored a couple of times but our defense just couldn’t hold them and we lost by a touchdown I think. I played the whole game both ways and was totally exhausted. I went straight home afterward which was not my usual post game activity. We always had some party or get together after normally. I was in bad shape and didn’t miss it. I just went to my room and crashed.
Of course I recovered in a couple more days and we even made the championship game a week or so later. We lost that one in another very close game with the most unusual ending I have ever seen or heard about. Just would mention that our team was on the bus to go home with a loss when we were called back off the bus for one more play which the referees totally botched.
And to finish off the year I had my tonsils removed. Mom insisted because she thought I got too many colds and sore throats. I was way older than normal for the procedure and fully grown physically. Not when that should be done. It was rough and both sides of my throat hemorraghed and I had to go back to have that treated with a long, very long curved needle to get the cragulant into the right spot way, way back in my throat.
Well, the young lad went on to fame and fortune and received more blessings than he merited.
Love seeks no profit or gain.
God Bless to all,