We’re All Going to Die of Pollen

A severe pollen count is 1,500.

Yesterday Nashville’s pollen count hit 16,000.

This is the highest recorded pollen level in the city’s history.

I think I’m going to die of pollen.

Several years ago I went to the Vanderbilt allergy clinic to be tested for allergies. I spent the entire morning there being stuck with needles. My mom made the appointment. At the time I was already married and over 25 years old. Which, if you happen to be married, does not make your wife happy.

I learned two things from my allergy screening:

1. I am allergic to 14 of the 16 objects they test you for. (more on this later) 

2. I can only breathe out of one nostril.

The most alarming thing I learned was that I’m allergic to trees and grass.

Think about this for a minute.




That’s like being allergic to oxygen.

How in the world is it possible for a human being to evolve and be allergic to trees and grass? What advantage did this give my caveman ancestors that would have made them more likely to kill a saber tooth tiger and pass on this evolutionary trait? Wouldn’t the caveman without the allergy to grass and trees be a more efficient hunter? If you were a cavewoman and you had to choose to breed with the man who was allergic to trees and grass or the man who wasn’t allergic to trees and grass, wouldn’t your decision have been easy to make?

Yet, somehow, I’m here.

And I can’t breathe.


That’s because I’m also allergic to dogs, cats, dust of all types, and roaches (the over-under on roaches being one of the sixteen items tested for allergies has to be the highest).

The only thing I am not allergic to is mold.

Which means I would have thrived in a hermetically sealed dungeon alongside the Count of Monte Cristo.


Not so much.

When I asked the allergist whether it was normal to have this many allergies and only have one working nasal passage she told me that I had “a high degree of adaptability.” Which is allergist speak for, “You are a freak.”

It also means someone could drown me by holding just half my head underwater. If I’d been a terrorist and gotten waterboarded, I would probably have died.

On the positive side, I like to think that if I had two working nostrils my forty time would be cut in half. (Provided, however, that I was running on artificial turf).

So you can imagine my agony right now. 

I truly cannot breathe at a pollen count of 16,000.  

Worse than that? I had total faith that my allergies were better because I took the advice of a 3HL listener about eating a spoonful of local, organic honey each morning to combat the pollen count. The idea seems sound, ingesting the pollen to get your body used to the allergens. Then I went for a jog yesterday afternoon. 

Now I can’t breathe at all.    

And chances are, if y’all live in the South, some of you are close to dying of pollen too.

I feel like walking death, a pollen zombie.

In an effort to stave off death, I plan on avoiding grass and trees for the rest of the spring. 

So far that plan is not going very well.  

Especially since we’re broadcasting outside today for the U.S. Men’s Soccer game at LP Field.

Pray for me. (Even more than usual).

Written by Clay Travis

OutKick founder, host and author. He's presently banned from appearing on both CNN and ESPN because he’s too honest for both.