The Fall and Spring are lovely seasons, in fact, Fall is my favorite season of the year, because its hoodie weather and I love wearing hoodies. But as Fall and Spring roll out I am always tortured by my allergies. This means that not only doing I get funny looks for a being a foreign gentlemen but also because my face swells up twice a year, and my eye gets redder than Wolverine in feral mode. (#doubleracism).
This is a troubling issue that has plagued me since I was a young lad in India. My grandmother on my dad’s side would take me to pick flowers every morning, and when I would come back in to house, my eyes would look like marshmallows in red dye. Despite mine and my mother’s objection to this, my grandmother still woke me every morning to pick these flowers, and climb into trees to pick the hard-to-get ones. But in her defense, who else was she going to complain to about all the troubles of the building, an adult in a conversation? No, she’d rather talk impressionable youth with a pollen allergy, with no clear opinions on anything. Through this I learned that my sinuses and eyeballs are below a 70-year old’s problems with the youth.
When a new kid starts at school, usually there’s a clever nickname associated with him. For a while I was “That Foreign Kid” or “The Kid with the Dress Shirt”; like I said earlier, clever. I remember the first Spring I was in the US, I wanted to be just like all the other fair children and frolic in the sun and then go home for 6 days to recover from the sunburn. Unfortunately, such was not my fate. The day I was invited to play the youth of America, my allergies got the best of me. Soon I became the “Red Eyed Kid”, which was actually a pretty cool nickname. I felt like I was a Pirate/Cowboy villain terrorizing the playground with my lack of depth perception, inflamed sinuses and the false tears. I quickly found out, nobody wants to hang out with the kid that could or could not be crying at all times. It leads to all the adults questioning the kids to see what they did. The other nickname I had was “Tears for Queers”, which I give props to because that was actually clever, despite the fact that I didn’t get the reference at the time.
In order to fix this, I tried everything. I was a pepper diet for a while, which I had to quit on doctors and digestive orders. I’ve been on several types of allergy medications, some of which I’m pretty sure made me legally drunk. I’ve even been to the allergist, which was a strange experience. When I met with the doctor, she said “let’s find out what you’re allergic to.” My reply, I want to say pollen, since that’s my face wants to kill me when I’m around trees. Her reply to that “Well let see what kind of pollen” Oh good, lets pinpoint it. Don’t they have a pill, a cream or shot that can cover the spread? So the test is, they prick you every conceivable thing that you could be allergic to, in order to see what you are allergic to. This was a genius way to pin point what’s wrong. Years of medical advancement but we still don’t have an effective way to not turn your skin red and itchy. She comes back and goes, “Yep, you’re allergic to nature.” Oh good, what’s the cure? A shot to your arm, once a week, and then I’ll be cured? Nope, it’ll sting and just stabilize it. Oh great, and then I’ll be cured? Maybe, but we don’t know. Oh and don’t forget to take your regular allergy medication. Okay, so not only am I probably still going to suffer from this ailment (and it is an ailment), but now once a week I get to be stabbed, legally!
I think I can attribute a lot my awkwardness to my allergies. Nobody really wants to hang around the sniffly kid. I’ve had allergic reactions that have come about during job interviews. “Hello, I’m [sniffle] Krish, [sniffle] nice to meet you [snort].” Needless to say I didn’t get the job. Whenever I do get an allergy attack I look like someone that has been abused in a relationship. Which of course leads to people asking me if I’m okay and telling me how brave I am. If modern medicine wants to step up its game and figure out allergies, that would be great. I would really like to not be awkward all the time.
Krish Mohan is a socially conscious, Indian standup comedian and writer who regularly tours the country. He performs at small theaters, bars, comedy clubs, colleges, DIY and house venues. With his quirky attitude, charming personality, and intelligent humor, Krish captivates and engages audiences of all backgrounds, tackling hot button topics like race, religion, war, immigration, while adding an optimistic, philosophical & sociological twist!