I got a nosebleed – not a big deal, right? Wrong

Image courtesy of The Blue Diamond Gallery by way of a Creative Commons license.

I got a nosebleed last night. No big deal, right? Well, not exactly.

I’ve had nosebleeds my entire life. When I was a kid my bloody nose frightened my parents into taking me to the hospital at Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Miss., where I was tested for epilepsy. They used putty to attach wires to my skull and my chest, then had me respond to a panel of blue, green and red blinking lights. Before the procedure my parents told me I would be flying on a rocket ship. Even then I knew they were fibbing.

In my mid-20s I finally discovered the reason for my bloody nose, courtesy of Dr. Bill Haik. He conducted a series of tests and determined I lacked a chemical that maintained the lining of my sinus passages and throat. That also explained my perpetual congestion.

I’ve had some serious episodes of nose bleeding. Once, I was working in Mom’s back yard when suddenly I felt something running down my throat. I had been reacting badly to the heavy pollen outflow that spring and assumed it was fluid from my nose. Except it was blood. It happened four times that day. The doctors at the ER theorized a blood vessel in my sinuses had ruptured.

Another time I was walking at Ferry Park when suddenly my nose erupted in blood. Luckily I was near a house under construction and was able to raid a portapotty for toilet paper. Also, a passing walker gave me some tissues when I used up the toilet paper.

I typically get minor nosebleeds in winter when the air is dry, and that was the case yesterday – except it was complicated by the fact I’m taking Plavix for my coronary occlusion device. My nose never actually bled, but I wasn’t able to blow it, and I’ve been dripping since the pine trees started dumping pollen into the spring air.

So if you see me sniffing uncontrollably, please don’t tell me to be done with it and blow my nose. If I blow my nose, trust me, it won’t be pretty.

About the author:

Del Stone Jr. is a professional fiction writer. He is known primarily for his work in the contemporary dark fiction field, but has also published science fiction and contemporary fantasy. Stone’s stories, poetry and scripts have appeared in publications such as Amazing Stories, Eldritch Tales, and Bantam-Spectra’s Full Spectrum. His short fiction has been published in The Year’s Best Horror Stories XXII; Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine; the Pocket Books anthology More Phobias; the Barnes & Noble anthologies 100 Wicked Little Witch Stories, Horrors! 365 Scary Stories, and 100 Astounding Little Alien Stories; the HWA anthology Psychos; and other short fiction venues, like Blood Muse, Live Without a Net, Zombiesque and Sex Macabre. Stone’s comic book debut was in the Clive Barker series of books, Hellraiser, published by Marvel/Epic and reprinted in The Best of Hellraiser anthology. He has also published stories in Penthouse Comix, and worked with artist Dave Dorman on many projects, including the illustrated novella “Roadkill,” a short story for the Andrew Vachss anthology Underground from Dark Horse, an ashcan titled “December” for Hero Illustrated, and several of Dorman’s Wasted Lands novellas and comics, such as Rail from Image and “The Uninvited.” Stone’s novel, Dead Heat, won the 1996 International Horror Guild’s award for best first novel and was a runner-up for the Bram Stoker Award. Stone has also been a finalist for the IHG award for short fiction, the British Fantasy Award for best novella, and a semifinalist for the Nebula and Writers of the Future awards. His stories have appeared in anthologies that have won the Bram Stoker Award and the World Fantasy Award. Two of his works were optioned for film, the novella “Black Tide” and short story “Crisis Line.”

Stone recently retired after a 41-year career in journalism. He won numerous awards for his work, and in 1986 was named Florida’s best columnist in his circulation division by the Florida Society of Newspaper Editors. In 2001 he received an honorable mention from the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association for his essay “When Freedom of Speech Ends” and in 2003 he was voted Best of the Best in the category of columnists by Emerald Coast Magazine. He participated in book signings and awareness campaigns, and was a guest on local television and radio programs.

As an addendum, Stone is single, kills tomatoes and morning glories with ruthless efficiency, once tied the stem of a cocktail cherry in a knot with his tongue, and carries a permanent scar on his chest after having been shot with a paintball gun. He’s in his 60s as of this writing but doesn’t look a day over 94.

Contact Del at [email protected]. He is also on Facebook, twitter, Pinterest, tumblr, TikTok, Ello and Instagram. Visit his website at delstonejr.com .


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