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Opinion: Pass the Kleenex; Spring is in the air

Pardon me if this one takes a little longer to read and to write.

I’ll be taking frequent breaks.

Hey, get your mind out of the toilet. That’s not where I’ll be going.

No, the way we blazed through January and February like that proverbial hot knife through butter (why would anyone use a hot knife to prepare their morning toast? Wouldn’t that sear your fingers?) it’s time to beeline it for any type of medicine that will stop this early onset of spring.

Snort, sniff, cough, sneeze, enough water in your eyes to fill an Aquafina bottle. Then that “snorty” throaty sound that will get you thrown out of most restaurants.

Ahhh, springtime in the South.

As I’ve increased my tenure on this big blue ball, it seems like the allergy gods are giving me just a little more to deal with than the previous year.

“You did okay with that ragweed last year,” those dastardly allergy gods must be saying. “Let’s see how many boxes of Kleenex you can blow through when we toss a heaping helping of mold and grasses your way.”

I can hear you saying: “Oh you big baby, just take a Zyrtec.”

Not a viable solution. A non-drowsy product claim to me means I can take one now and sleep until the last firework has exploded in early July.

Or you might be offering: “Quit complaining. Just go to the doctor.”

My response would be to tell you to go someplace, but it wouldn’t be to the doctor.

I have a crackerjack medical team that keep me on this side of the grass, but I try to frequent them as little as possible.

Having a sawbones yank out Lefty, my renal cell carcinoma-riddled left kidney makes me a bit hesitant to mount a table and inquire: “OK Dr. Mellis (my outstanding urologist), what else can we tear out of there?”

In actuality, Dr. Mellis saved my life.

For now.

That’s the thing about cancer, those MRIs and chest X-rays can come back normal.

Until they don’t.

So, all this sneezing and snorting has made me deal with staring down those tests. It’s a rite I’ll probably deal with for the rest of my life.

And that’s fine with me. Getting old is a blast. I never thought there were some many ways to say “Oy vey” when I take those first steps in the morning.

The hits (cracks and pops) just keep on coming.

While the Braves get into playing shape, anticipating the opening of the season, I am absolutely giddy waiting for that letter from my gastroenterologist, Dr. Simon Cofrancesco, informing me of his interest in a different opening and that it’s colonoscopy time again.

Oh joy.

I think all this early spring is merely a tease. I’m banking on it getting cold a few more times. I’ll pray for anything so long as it will gets me out of playing in the dirt.

But there’s nothing quite as aesthetically pleasing to the eye as springtime here in the South. Friends in other parts of the country always ask: “Is Augusta National as beautiful in person as it looks on TV?”

No. It’s an optical delusión. Stay away. And you have a better chance of winning Powerball than ever sniffing around on that hallowed ground.

The Masters belongs to us Southerners. All that flora and fauna comes with a price that we pay every year.


Mike Tasos has lived in Forsyth County for more than 30 years. He’s an American by birth and considers himself a Southerner by the grace of God. He can be reached at


Mike Tasos is a columnist for Appen Media and the Forsyth Herald. He lives in Cumming.