This is my blood: A day in the life of the accidental miscreant

Max Bean, Staff Writer

I did not know when it began. Throughout my time at the University, I have been hit with harsh assignments, sleepless nights and multiple on-campus quarantines. Looking back now, nothing could have prepared for what was to come — one hell of a nosebleed. 

It all began in my horror film class (appropriately enough). I was busy trying to write notes on the different relationships between sensuality and horror before I felt something I could not control flow down my nose. Before I knew it, it spilled on the mask, now reduced from an object of safety to one of danger. My blood had tainted it. I could do nothing but hold my nose shut in utter disbelief, doing my best to control the red stream before I could be called out for my treasonous and dangerous actions. Now I know how supers-preaders (read: everyone) feel when they cough or blow their nose. God help me if water goes through the wrong pipe — or even worse, if I sneeze during class! Not only was my mask off of my face, but I could do nothing but wait for the blood to clot and stop the flow. The class soon ended, and the various pictures of Marilyn Chambers (main star of the film “Rabid”) flickered off the screen. I ripped a paper towel into pieces and stuffed one up my bloody nostril. Now I could stop holding my nose, but the downside was that my only protection against COVID-19 was a bloody mess. 

I became as dangerous as a carrier, not to mention I was a good block or two from my dorm in Smith Hall. When the rest of the class saw me in my wretched condition, they hissed as they left, and my efforts to strike up conversation were met with panic and the sound of shoes jumping down the four flights it takes to get to ground level. Wherever I looked, grimaces and blocked doorways followed. It was only when I walked outside that I could take a breath of fresh air. Of course, it was the wrong move to make. With my bloody mask crumpled up in my hand, a crowd of people stared at me in shock and disbelief. Then came their cruel cry, one I cannot recall without tearing up, even a little at the injustice of it all. Since I could find no spare masks, nor was I allowed to enter any more of the ELC, the great cry reverberated all throughout the hill as it did all of first semester.

“MASK UP OR PACK UP!” “MASK UP OR PACK UP!”

By the time I had crossed the street, my nose was acting up again and the paper towel insert was blood red. I ran inside and clambered up the stairs to where I could toss my mask in the wash and clean myself in private. It was the most horrific experience I had ever faced, and believe me, when you’ve spent a month or two picking up goat feces at your family farm, you know when shit stinks. It wasn’t until I saw a Public Safety car outside of Smith Hall that I realized how close I had come to total and utter annihilation. One simple nosebleed had wrecked my social life, gotten me humiliated and nearly gotten me kicked off campus for good.

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