Spanish Ant Food
by Anonymous

Dear Ed: Having had psoriasis for twenty-seven of my forty-four years, it was great to read your page. I've had times when my skin was clear, and times like now when I swear it's going to kill me. I've lost fingernails and hair, but never a friend. I've had injections, creams, herbs and drugs. I've been PUVA'd, wrapped, sunburned, tarred and hospitalized. I must say, though, having worked in hospitals most of my adult life, it's not the worst thing you could get.

I have three healthy children, a husband who loves me and more friends than I can count. It's a grand life, isn't it! But I thought I would tell you two stories that have happened to me.

The first one took place in Spain. My friend and I had rented a villa in the Baleric Islands. The villas all have flat roofs, so before we were unpacked I was up on the roof, naked, getting all the sun I could on all those pesky spots. After about a week we noticed there were a lot of ants up on the roof. They were making a beeline under my beach chair, where they would pick up flakes and carry them back to their nest. Kinda gross, but it's a flake story!

The second story involves an herbal remedy that was given to me by a woman with whom I worked. Well, it worked great and within two weeks I was spot free. Unfortunately, it involved consuming large guantities of brewer's yeast. So, yes, I was spot free, but I smelled fermented and had the worst yeast infection ever inflicted on womankind. I had a choice: I could live with my skin itch-free, or-r-r-r-r.... I decided that since everyone was used to seeing me scratch my arms, back and legs, they would be more comfortable if I kept the psoriasis. Anyway, hope I haven't grossed you out to-o-o-o much. -Anonymous

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Ed's Response:

Dear Anonymous: Ants, eh? At least the little buggers had the manners to wait until you were done with your skin! I wonder if there's some significance to the fact that these were Spanish ants? If that's the case, I just might mail-order a colony or two. I've waged a fruitless battle, since I moved to Kentucky, against the little red sweet ants that invade my home every year. Those little buggers don't do anything handy around the house. If the Spanish variety have a taste for flakes ... well, THAT's a different story! Bring'm on!

I am completely sympathetic vis-a-vis your decision to forgo the brewer's yeast. I had a similar experience over a decade ago when I (just call me "Lucky") got to be part of the fish-oil-as-cholesterol-reduction-therapy experiments. I agreed to consume enough fish oil on a daily basis to fill the running lamps on a 1800s whaling ship. As a result, I smelled like something washed ashore several weeks ago and nothing I could eat or drink dissipated the awful taste. My cardiologist asked me, after the six-month trial, if I'd experienced any side effects from consuming so much fish oil. I said, as earnestly as I could, "Why, yes. I've lost my fear of water." -Ed

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