This morning I had a ton of errands to run, including a trip to the pharmacy. While standing in line, I was approached by an employee promoting some propolis-based products. I was feeling a bit tired and, frankly, in no mood to hear a sales pitch. So I made polite excuses, and she withdrew.
Well, almost immediately I felt like a total jerk, remembering that I used to be a fundraiser (worst job of my life) and realizing that it wouldn’t hurt me that much to have a look at this stuff, so I crossed the room to speak to her. I ended up buying a propolis cough syrup…no, I don’t have a cough, but it’s always good to have something like that in the medicine cabinet. Besides, I had to buy SOMETHING.
Encouraged by my interest, she began describing other, similar products to me. These throat drops, she explained, stimulate our immune system in order for us to be in better shape at the beginning of the flu season.
It was out before I could stop it: oh, no, I can’t take anything that stimulates the immune system. I have multiple myeloma.
She looked at me blankly and said: ah, I see. But I could tell that, in fact, she could not “see” at all. She had no idea what myeloma was, but figured that it probably wasn’t a good thing. She didn’t ask me for an explanation, so I didn’t offer one.
Those four words, ho il mieloma multiplo, ended our chat.