Usog

So today while shopping I suddenly developed a killer headache and felt like throwing up and I turned really really pale. When we got home I headed straight to the bathroom but nothing turned up. My sister suggests that it's "usog." Usog in the mall? On a twentysomething? It's almost unheard of. And who could it have been from? The nice nice sales assistant in SkinFood who gave me loads of free samples (Tip: When you visit SkinFood bring along empty containers and they would gladly give you free samples of whatever product you wish to try)? Or the sales assistants in VNC where there was a clearance sale today? (The requisite EQ post will follow when I'm all better)

From Wikipedia:
"Usog" is a Filipino superstition where an affliction or psychological disorder is attributed to an evil eye hex. It usually affects an unsuspecting child, usually an infant or toddler, who has been greeted by a stranger.

Once affected, the child begins to develop fever, and sometimes convulsions. Supposedly, the child can be cured by placing its clothing in hot water and boiling it. It is said that the condition is caused by the stranger having a masamang mata, or evil eye in Tagalog, lurking around. Superstitious folk say they have observed this phenomenon and regularly suggest this be added to the Psychiatric Disorders Handbook DSM-IV. The suggestion has not been accepted.

Usog can also affect adults, although it induces vomiting rather than fever. Supposedly, it can be prevented by stopping a stranger or visitor from greeting the child. Unlike "lihi", however, usog is not medically accepted.


I don't know if I believe in this or not. Early this year we attended the Good Friday mass and then my brother said he was feeling dizzy and he was really pale so my mom took him home, and then a few minutes later the same thing happened to me.

Now the cure for usog, or at least that's what the old people say, is for someone to rub saliva on you. Gross, I know. But that's what my lola did that day and a few minutes later I was all better. Of course it could also be the ice-cold Coke they had me drink. My mom and my grandma come from the school of thought where all ailments can be cured by coke - nausea, diarrhea, even hyperacidity. Anyway, my lola is four hours away, and no, I do not welcome anyone's saliva on me (despite my cousin's generous, generous offer to spit on me) so I'm having Coke and hoping for the best.

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