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February 03, 2004

To Live and Die in Berkeley

This story begins, as most of my stories worth telling do, in that cesspool of infection, disease, and dirty people known as the UC Berkeley Residence Halls. When not being drunk and loud, it's select inhabitants are necessarily being dirty and unsanitary, contributing to the widespread infection of the population at large. As a result, I have become sick for the first time in two years! The last time I was sick (I mean sick enough to feel like shit) was, fittingly enough, in the dorms my first year! I guess it comes with the territory, but it's still really frustrating to have to be like 80 times as vulnerable to illness because of all the people living around you.

But hey, it's no big deal. People get sick. And then you drug yourself up, and you feel better, right? Well, that's what most people do. Here's what happened when I woke up feeling like crap on Monday morning - I immediately searched my pile of medicines, and realized I had absolutely no NyQuil, DayQuil, or Tylenol Cold lying around, which are really the only medicines that can battle the magnitude of shittiness I was feeling. No big deal, take some regular Tylenol, go to class, pick up some on the way back, right? Wrong! "Picking up" some medicine would invariably involve stopping at the devil's recruitment center, commonly and ironically known as Rexall: Blue Heaven. Rexall and I have a long and rocky history, dating back to my freshman year. Frankly, it's an overpriced, understocked, incompetently managed, terribly serviced, accumulation of shittiness sitting there on Telegraph Avenue, stinking up the entire city. Yeah, I know - fits right in with the garbage and the bums.

But you realize, I had no other choice! I was sick, and getting sicker by the moment. Everyone on my floor is sick too, in a conspiracy to prevent me from getting better. I had to break my vow, and enter the store I told myself I would never enter again. Drastic times call for drastic measures. So, after composing myself for a minute outside of the store, and swatting away the bum trying to beg for change, I entered the store. I felt a whoosh of ineptitude wash over me, followed by earsplitting evil cackling, which turned out to be the stupid radio headsets they all wear. WHY THE HELL DO YOU NEED A HEADSET YOU IDIOTS? Do you think you're a helicopter pilot or something? Like seriously, "THERE IS NO PROBLEM HOUSTON! TAKE OFF THAT DAMN HEADSET!" What benefit does a radio headset afford that yelling across the room wouldn't? NONE. You just have those because you can afford them, given all the profits you make from exploiting students trapped in the city with no transportation with your shitty products and even shittier prices!

Worse yet, I walked through the place, and they didn't have any of the aforementioned cold medicines! Not even a single one! What kind of drug store doesn't carry Tylenol Cold, NyQuil, or DayQuil? Only the shittiest drug store known to the human race: Rexall! But I couldn't leave empty handed, having broken my vow of TWO years! It couldn't be all for nothing! So I ended up buying Robitussin, even though I'm not coughing that much. Seriously - I hate Rexall. In fact, sitting here, right now, in the dark, tired, sick, and almost too weak to type, there is nothing I hate more in this world than Rexall. It should be burned to the ground. I would do it too, but I'm TOO DAMN SICK!

I had one last alternative left, which was the illustrious Cal Dining facilities, where I could supposedly swipe for medicine. First the GBC: they had every type of medicine for every type of ailment besides cold medicine. The only ones that were finished were DayQuil, NyQuil, and Tylenol Cold! How awesome! That's just great. I could load up on two years worth of Mydol, but I can't even get a SINGLE tablet of NyQuil. Goddammit it all! Barely feeling up to walking, I made my way to the Den, my last hope for survival. Entering the double doors, and virtually running to the section, I found it even more barren than the GBC. Here there was a big pile of tampons and condoms, but not a single cold medicine! Not ONE! Seriously, I wish I had a use for condoms right now - I really wish I did - but I don't! What I want is some DAMN COLD MEDICINE, and not a single store in a five block radius of campus on south side carries anything! You're all useless! I hate you all so much! What this means is that I have to walk to either WalGreens or Andronicos, hope they have medicine, and not pass out in the process. And that's what it's like to live and die in Berkeley.


hahaha.. try the campus market on sather lane. they have a lot but i dont know what their prices are like..

Your comment about the headsets nearly caused me to die of laughter. Such rage, such anger, so wonderful.

ahhhh... its 5th floor cyndi. i love your site. :-D

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