Not all measles experiences fodder for national news

By Grant McGee

CMI columnist

The Lady of the House and I were sitting in the living room in our recliners watching the evening news guy tell of a mumps outbreak in Ohio, measles in Texas and California.

“Hmph,” I said to The Lady of the House. “We didn’t make national news when we had measles in college.”

“You got measles in college?” she asked.

“Yep,” I said.

It was long ago and far away at The Big University.

One night before bed I stared at the bathroom mirror. I was red from my face to my belly. I squinted, maybe it was my eyes.

Grant McGee

Grant McGee


I was red from bunches and bunches of itty bitty spots all over me.

I called The Big University’s infirmary.

“I HAVE RED SPOTS ALL OVER ME,” I screamed with horror into the phone.

“You have the measles,” said the calm woman on the other end. “You need to come down here right now.”

It was a trap. I went to the infirmary and lost my freedom. I was quarantined with about a dozen other guys who had the measles.

I don’t remember much about that time. It was an old, overly warm building. I stayed in the bed. I slept. I read the biography of Ernest Hemingway when I should’ve been studying. Most of the other guys were in a fraternity.

The first night there was a tap on the window next to me. Then another. And another. I got out of bed and looked into the darkness. I saw two guys waving.

“There’re guys out there throwing stuff,” I said.

Some of the frat guys sprung from their beds and started tying sheets together.

They lowered the tied sheets out the window and waited a moment. When they pulled it back up there was a six-pack of beer tied to the end.

“And that was my measles experience,” I stated. “But we didn’t make national news.”


Grant McGee is a long-time broadcaster and former truck driver who rides bicycles and likes to talk about his many adventures on the road of life. Contact him at his blog:

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