Volume 93, Issue 89
Friday, March 17, 2000
To stay healthy, don't get sick
If you read as many medical journals as I do, you'd know that getting sick is a bad thing.
I read all kinds of journals with probing, thought-provoking headlines like "Is cancer bad for you?" and take my word for it there are all kinds of things out there that can make you sick.
Take the "mad cow" disease, for example. Everybody freaked out that Britain was going to annihilate people with their mad cow beef, so for a while, everyone in Britain became vegetarian. Then everyone in Britain started dying of malnutrition, because, let's face it, you're not going to survive long with nothing but leeks and Guinness.
Anyways, getting sick can be trouble, especially if you have to go to an emergency room. It's a problem now, because with recent medical cutbacks, the government has allotted us one band-aid for every 253.6 people. Also, most of the doctors you've seen in the emergency room have been awake for the past 83 days and after awhile, they tend to treat us all the same way.
Doctor: So what's the problem?
Me: I think I broke my arm.
Doctor: What makes you say that?
Me: Well, I was fixing my car tire when the jack gave way, the car landed on my arm and I heard a loud crunch.
Doctor: What you're describing sounds like an endocrine problem.
Me: Well, I'm pretty sure that it's...
Doctor: I'm prescribing you some coriticosteroids and a diet of Guinness and leeks. In the meantime, stay away from mad cow meat.
It seems to me that the best policy is to stay away from sickness. I've tried explaining this to the public before, but people still flood emergency rooms. I guess no one wants to listen to me. Perhaps you'll change your mind if I give you a little first aid info, so let's give it a try.
First aid is what you do in emergencies. Things that would constitute an emergency would include being run over by an 18–wheeled truck five times (or being run over by five different 18–wheelers, it's your choice), being bitten in half by a shark, or eating a mad cow.
Things which wouldn't constitute an emergency would be roughly everything else. Once you have decided what kind of emergency situation you're in, consult your manual. There are many different kinds of manuals, so make sure you pick one with an easy-to-find index, with headings like "bitten in half by shark," or "digestion of one or more mad cows steaks."
The manual will then tell you what to do. The instructions should be very easy to follow, because all emergencies require you to telephone a doctor. When you do phone the doctor, make sure you have precise information so attention and treatment will be expeditious.
Me: Doctor, my friend was run over by a truck.
Doctor: How many times?
Me: Somewhere between four and five.
Doctor: Well, was it four or was it five?
Me: I guess it was four.
Doctor: Tell him to see me in two weeks. Meanwhile, keep a cold compress on him and tell him to avoid strenuous physical labour.
You see, without that kind of information, that phone call could have lasted forever.
Well, that's about it. If you have any questions, drop by my place this weekend I'm having a mad cow roast. Bring a friend.
Copyright © The Gazette 2000