I’m flat on my back on the bed. Ten o’clock at night. Still early for this night owl and mostly unheard of to be in bed at this hour.
The bright light overhead scalds like a torture device in a Soviet interrogation room. It sears my brain.
The dimmer’s 3-4 feet away. I’d rise to turn it off except that I cannot move. I’m immobilized. I have Bud Light to thank.
I throw a right arm over my eyes, or a left, or both, to shield from the brightness. I cover my head with the flannel blanket. White cotton is not conducive to eliminating glare.
My stomach cramps violently and flips somersaults in nausea. You know when you want to throw up and you don’t want to? I want my stomach to settle. Lying motionless on my back, head flat and straight on the pillow, affords miniscule relief. To turn my head just to look at the clock is to invite in an upsurge of nausea and cramping and lightning bolts to the head.
This isn’t food poisoning. Neither could it be for the simple fact that all I’ve eaten today are snack crackers to take the storming edge off the Bud Lights. They didn’t.
The violent stomach distress, in truth, is the lesser of two problems.
My pounding headache is off the Richter scale. A horrendous crunching splitting pain enveloping the entire skull. Not even my migraines are this violently severe.
So intense is the pain that I cannot construct a thought or an image. Am I dying? Is this the onset of some old-age mental disease? I’m drenched in pain with no way out. I truly wonder whether I should go to the ER for morphine, like migraineurs do.
If only I could move even a fraction of an inch to switch off that bright light.
And I have Bud Light to thank.
I know this for certain. I had two tall glasses while watching the Niners lose to the Seahawks in the playoffs. I drank them slowly. I couldn’t get halfway through the second glass. The headache and short-circuiting were coming on strong.
When I got back, it was bad. Stomach cramps and head in a vise. I took crackers to soothe the symptoms. I could hardly see straight. I finished off some computer work that HAD to get done — by force of will and sense of responsibility — and fell into bed.
Where for hours I lie motionless, yearning for sleep that couldn’t come and relief still miles away. Thanks to Bud Light.
See, I’m a beer drinker, in moderation. I enjoy good beers, craft beers. It’s very rare that I drink cheap beers anymore for two simple reasons: They’re crappy and they tend to give me headaches. (When I do drink cheap, it’s for solely budget reasons.)
But NONE has EVER produced the splitting blinding headache and stomach distress that Bud Light did.
Additives. Chemicals. Mysterious ingredients to amplify the buzz. It’s not even a good buzz, not a real buzz. It’s a manufactured buzz created from additives and chemicals and who knows what else. How do I know? My body. My response. My experience.
(Plus, for the record, there’s plenty of discussion and speculation about their additives and others’ reports online of bad experiences with Bud, as I’ve since discovered.)
The hours pass. No idea how many because like I wrote I’m immobilized by a violent blistering headache and grinding stomach cramps and nausea. I couldn’t turn to look at the clock, much less rise to turn off that light.
Eventually the stomach reaches its pinnacle of distress and hurriedly leads me in my stupor by the hand to the toilet, where I throw up and throw up and throw up more.
All of it Bud Light (and token remains of digested crackers).
Only then do I return to bed, still steeped in queasiness but feeling better for an emptied stomach. Only then, while I’m on my feet, can I switch off the light.
I’m not here to probe Bud or Bud Light as a company or evaluate its products (though both are worthy topics).
I’m writing this because Bud Light has no precedent. It produces in me a bone-crunching headache and bout of churning nausea like no beer I’ve had (and as a gal who enjoys drink, that’s a vast spectrum indeed). Your mileage may differ. As for me, Bud Light will never be a choice again. It is and will remain little “bud” a bad memory.