When I was a kid, I frequently got sick right before Christmas. The year changed, but the bug remained the same. I also got colds a few times each winter. But they were pretty similar too. Since moving to Tucson, by contrast, I have discovered that there is a world of possibility in the realm of malady. Each thing I come down with seems to have a delicately variegated trajectory worthy of a Dickens novel. And no two bugs are alike. Although Kim doesn't get sick the way I do, she has noticed something similar. There are so many discrete stages to an illness here. Maybe that should that be "now" instead of "here." Could it be that bugs are becoming more fine-grained in their individuality? Or is it simply that this relatively balmy desert clime permits the observance of nuances that would get lost amid the blasts of cold-weather misery? Whatever the reason, I'm mighty nostalgic for the Fordist illnesses of my youth.