SH Sean Harding/blog
Benadryl and improv do not mix
Thursday, March 8th, 2007

Spring is just around the corner. It is my second favorite season, right behind summer. In spring, the weather only sucks 95% of the time, compared to 99.9% of the time in winter. Even better, spring means that summer (with a mere 70% suckage here in Seattle) is on the way. But spring brings one horrible thing: allergies. My eyes and throat get itchy, my sinuses get congested and I am prone to bouts of uncontrollable sneezing. It really is no fun at all, and I can’t live my life that way. So I have to turn to drugs.

Over the years, I’ve tried a lot of solutions. I try Claritin almost every year. I’ve sprayed Nasonex and Flonase up my nose until I can’t smell anything else. I had a brief relationship with Allegra. But no matter what I try, nothing works nearly as well as good old cheap, over-the-counter Benadryl. Benadryl usually knocks the allergy symptoms right out. Unfortunately, it also makes me drowsy and clouds my thinking considerably.

Yesterday afternoon, my allergies were really acting up, so I popped a Benadryl. My singing lesson went relatively well, but by the time I got to Playground, I felt like I was in a dense fog. I could barely keep up with the clapping warmup, and the scenework I tried to do was nearly a disaster (saved only by the fact that I limited myself to very small contributions). I think my brain was operating on a delay of at least three seconds. Every time we started a new exercise, I tried to evaluate my ability to do it, and I almost always decided to sit it out. I ended up sitting on my butt most of the night. That’s not the way I like to participate in Playground, but it was really the only sane course of action.

Tonight, we have our first real show. In front of people who aren’t our classmates. Ack! I’m really excited, and not all that nervous, but I suspect my nerves will increase gradually as showtime approaches. I only have one rule for myself tonight: no Benadryl.

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