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Daniel Uy

Daniel Uy

Daniel Uy is a Toronto-based Yoga Teacher and Practitioner. He teaches several different styles of yoga throughout the city and more information about his work can be found on He has been HIV+ since 1997 at the ripe old age of 21yrs old. He has a light-hearted approach to life and is an eternal optimist.

He shares stories and information on health, wellness, and spirituality beyond the pharmaceutical and religious realms. And will also share and discuss some of his favourite pastimes – spinning poi, reading, yoga, meditation and hamburgers. Metta.


My virus has a first name

Thursday, 21 May 2015 Written by // Daniel Uy - Urban Yogi, Brian Finch - Founder Categories // General Health, Health, Lifestyle, Living with HIV, Opinion Pieces, Brian Finch, Daniel Uy

Brian Finch and Daniel Uy trade stories about being sick - and naming their viruses like hurricanes

My virus has a first name

Daniel, left, says "“I’m covered with Vick’s, drinking tea (aka hot grass-clippings juice) with decongestants and sunglasses to block the light from me getting dizzy. Yay Veronica!”  

Daniel: So school is finally done and I was looking forward to having more free time to just relax and unwind and have less of a schedule right up until the weekend that Veronica came to town. 

I was not expecting her. She just sort of barged into my life and sucker punched me in the face. The initial hit knocked my voice out of commission and plugged up my sinuses. She stayed around for the week and it was a mostly a drag, but without wigs and lipstick.  There were a few days I couldn’t work because of her too.

Thankfully on day nine her bags were packed by the door and she was on her way out of my life. Oh.  Did I mention Veronica was a virus? 

I am kind of tired of getting colds or being run down and ill. It’s been almost two decades of this and that and regardless of how it happened, it happens.  I live with the belief now that when the body says rest, you rest.  It’s simple and a challenge and it’s really about me living life as it is that day.  So when I’m at the highest point of my physical strength, it’s a real struggle to be sick.  It’s also a reminder of those days with AIDS and chronic pain that never goes away. 

I do not like being asked how I am. It sometimes reminds me or brings back feelings of being inspected like a bad batch of strawberries at a farmer’s market.  So this time, after a week of people asking me how I felt, I took the decision to take it into my own hands. I gave her a name. Veronica. I had a brief moment when I thought “Perhaps I should start at A, like a hurricane” but thought it quite silly.

When I tweeted the name of my cold, Brian Finch chimed in. He said the unspoken thought out loud and gave it real life. 

Brian: I, @DareStoriesTO aka Brian, immediately thought of the hurricanes, and I too, deal with endless colds during the winter. This has been the case for years and years. I wear gloves everywhere as to not touch surfaces. Endlessly I wash my hands and get freaked out by the slightest cough around me. 

When I saw Daniel’ naming Veronica, I thought, "well, maybe we should have a cold off. We’ll name each of our colds until we’ve gone through the entire alphabet. Who can do it first". I had just finished a minor cold whom I named “Areola.” It was time to get creative, and I’m pretty sure that there has never been a hurricane with this name. Let’s just say it was a nipply cold that time. 

Now we are evenly scored one letter each. We haven’t figured out what the prize for winning is. Stay tuned.

Perhaps this should be a reality show stuffed full of Kleenex, Dristan nose sprays and Neocitran. It’s probably better suited as an art webcam project. Watching someone sneezing for daytime television in terms of plot is what I’d call a slow burn. 

Spring is starting to settling in and the last thing I want to think of is winter. If I have to, I’ll know at least I can make a little bit of fun with it.