#TotallyTrueFactsTuesday – September 4, 2018

Happy one year anniversary to Totally True Facts Tuesday!

Over the last year, we’ve delved into the world of the book National Lampooon’s Totally True Facts, explored the weirder side of things I see on the internet, and even a weird job ad that in no way matched my professional experience.

It’s been fun.

I thought of a great idea several weeks ago while working on a different Totally True Fact…why not turn this over to a personal post, and give you some totally true facts…about me?  So for the month of September, a new fact about this Head Poobah each Tuesday – four weeks, four things you probably didn’t know about me.

I’m allergic to caffeine.

Absolute truth. I was diagnosed back in 1995 with the allergy, which manifests as hives.  Since I’ve lived almost 23 of my almost 36 years (I was diagnosed right after I turned 13 years old) with this allergy, I’ve learned to live without caffeine.  Really, it isn’t the worst thing in the world, at least not for me.

Anyone who has met me, and finds out my allergy when I politely say “no thank you” to coffee (fact within a fact: I’m not a huge coffee drinker, and that has nothing to do with caffeine), or need a decaffinated tea bag, has always asked me how I survive without it.  Simple: I don’t know any other way.  I’ve had people tell me “oh, I know what you mean! I get such a headache from caffeine!”  I ask them if they break out in hives, to which I usually get no response.  Then no, you don’t really know.  A headache, heart palpitations, or hyperactivity are the physical effects of excessive caffeine intake, but hives are an immune response.

Since I haven’t tested the waters of caffeine since 1995, I am unsure if this allergy still exists, or if I’ve outgrown it.  However, I’m pretty sure that if I’ve survived to this point in my life without it, then I’m probably better off not finding out!

You will be happy to know that I actually don’t have a chocolate allergy (we actually confirmed this in 2013 with allergy bloodwork) – this seems to go hand-in-hand for most, and I avoided chocolate for almost three years.  Found out the hard way that I was allergic to that too (around the same time, but it may have been the caffeine) when I ate ice cream at school that – surprise! – had chocolate in it.  Had swollen lips, which is scary and not cool.  That was enough to scare me, but I was still drinking ice tea at school everyday, so the hives were not going away.  Switched away from that (I think to juice), and boom, hives stopped.

So that’s the first fact!  Next week, another fact you may or may not know about me!



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