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Shell Shocked: Cure galore

By Staff | Mar 2, 2016

If you watch network TV news each evening at 6:30 p.m. you will note that every commercial is about poor health and drugs to deal with it. That’s because the average viewer of the evening news is over 50 years of age.

The assumption is that if you’re over 50 you must be suffering from some kind of disease, or physical ailment ranging from arthritis of the toe nail to stenosis of the ear lobe. The commercials offer you a full cure or at the very least moderate relief.

If you’ve viewed the news recently and have been able to get past the latest Donald Trump challenge to Pope Francis to get in a boxing ring with him for three rounds you would then get to the commercials. And you will note that every commercial will offer you a long and healthy life. There is now a cure for a number of major diseases.

For example, one of the pharmaceutical companies has just introduced “Lacia,” a treatment for those who constantly hallucinate that their shoe laces are never tied properly. Lacia allows shoe wearers to bypass certain neurons in the brain that cause this hallucination. Never again will you sense that your shoe laces aren’t tied properly.

As you know, the pharmaceutical companies are also obligated to divulge potential side effects in the interests of transparency. Among the side effects of Lacia are compulsive belly button itching, walking on your hands, loss of toe nails, inability to properly digest shoe leather and a general feeling of ennui and misanthropy.

Another new drug announced during the evening news is called Thumbia. Clinical trials have proved the new drug’s efficacy in curing chronic thumb sucking. Thumb sucking is a rare adult disease that carries over from childhood. Thumb suckers are generally ostracized socially because in the middle of dining in a restaurant the disease carrier begins to suck his thumb and won’t stop until he’s carried out of the restaurant.

Thumbia inhibits the sucking of thumbs by cutting the supply of esmogen, an enzyme that forces the brain to regard the body as a cucumber garden. By rerouting the flow of esmogen from the brain to the spleen, thumb suckers no longer feel the urge.

However, the side effects need to be properly understood. All drugs come with side effects. In a small percentage of cases, Thumbia causes excessive fondling of celery sticks, sleep walking into neighbors’ homes, night barking, fiery ambitions and the incessant use of dangling participles.

And, finally, another breakthrough drug was introduced during a recent telecast of NBC Evening News with Lester Holt. It’s called “Escubadan” and it cures blackened tongue. Blackened tongue has been traced to Sanibel and is a residual disease caused by excessive eating of blackened fish. Once a Sanibel restaurant patron is afflicted with blackened tongue disease all food, regardless of the way it’s prepared, will taste blackened.

The side effects may outweigh the benefits of the drug in this instance. Among them are speaking in a soprano voice, forgetting the lyrics of the national anthem, crawling on all fours in your backyard in search of live geckos and hissing at causeway toll collectors.

But the good news is that more drugs are being approved every day to fight disease. And you can discover them all on the evening news.

-Art Stevens is a long-time columnist for The Islander. His tongue-in-cheek humor is always offered with a smile.