By G. L. Dickson, P & W Health Scout
PIERRE, SD – In a response to the burgeoning possibility faced by the state’s executive office and certain legislators as well as key political benefactors of becoming infected with Covid-19 (the Coronavirus), South Dakota Governor Krispie Gnome today announced she has formed a special committee to advise her and her relatives about dealing with the spread of the virus. Called the Coronavirus Wrangling Posse – Gnome said it is a health and wellness tactical squad that will focus on some people’s wellbeing.
“These are all well-respected individuals who are recognized nationally in the fields of family, internal, and forensic medicine and neurology,” the one-time Snow Queen of Northern State said. “I think that along with addressing the spread of these evil spores through the phone lines, radio waves, and Internet jibble-jabblies that we need to get going on stopping them through science and modern medicine.”
The state’s chief executive attempted to calm any fears that citizens might have about the spread of the virus by utilizing the lame minimization, distraction, and denial techniques she has become known for.
“I don’t think people should panic and run about all higgledy-piggledy about this thing,” she said as reassuringly as she could. “I think our state has just an itsy-bitsy risk. I’ve been assured by my Posse members that no more than 1 percent of the Caucasian population attending the ‘right’ churches will catch this disease. The rest of you – and you know who you are – well, good luck!”
Asked how she and her Posse came up with those statistics, the governor admitted she had some help from a friend at the national level.
“Well, I talked to Vice President Pence, the Big Virus Guy now in Washington,” Gnome said. “The vice president said he’d dealt with disease before and he is almost, maybe certain that lots of prayer and speaking in tongues will keep the infected number down. So, I interpret that to be an itsy-bitsy risk. You know, it’s kinda like that spider. ‘The itsy-bitsy spider went up the water-spout . . . ‘“The governor continued to sing the nursery rhyme with a smile on her face while making rising and falling movements with her fingers.
After a few minutes of singing, smiling, and hand movements South Dakota’s chief executive was ready to introduce the Coronavirus Wrangling Posse.
They were a diverse group of medical professionals who apparently have agreed to come to the state’s aid to stop the spread of the Coronavirus spores. They are, in no particular order: Dr. Galen “Doc” Adams, a feisty frontier family practice physician originally from Dodge City, KS, now living in Deadwood; Dr. Benjamin Casey, a neurosurgeon from New York; Dr. Marlena Evans, an internist from Salem University Hospital in Salem, OH; Dr. Michaela Quinn, an internist from Colorado Springs and temporarily housed in a dorm in Brookings; Dr. Loretta Wade, a medical pathologist for the Naval Criminal Investigation Service in New Orleans; and Dr. Leonard “Bones” McCoy, a Starfleet Medical Officer with specialization in surgery, internal medicine, and exobiology. He is from Tolstoy. The last physician she introduced was Dr. Elmer Hartman, a physician who is a hospitalist at Quahog Hospital in Quahog, RI.
Gnome stated that this group of physicians have been widely recognized nationally and internationally for their medical prowess.
“And some have been through incredible physical and mental hardships, so coming here to South Dakota shouldn’t be taxing at all,” the Governor said. “Take Dr. Evans for example. Over the last thirty years or so, her challenges include possession by the devil; a plummet from a 30-story-window (which she obviously survived); being used as a surrogate for genetically engineered babies, Rex and Cassie, during a four-year coma, where she was presumed dead after being involved in a plane crash; being mind-controlled to believe she was a serial killer; and becoming pregnant late in life and suffering a miscarriage, which caused her to have hysterical amnesia. She has also been kidnapped numerous times over the past 30 years. She is a doctor, wife, mother, twin, grandmother and great-grandmother.
“I sure don’t think those spores are gonna have much effect on her, do you? I mean, she’s one tough Bee-yatch if you ask me!”
Gnome said the entire posse had equally stressful life experiences such as being bit by rattlesnakes, intergalactic space travel, working with vague interns and medical students, being kidnapped by bank robbers, fighting Klingons, and delivering babies in a stagecoach station while the driver changed horses.
“And I want to point out how well-qualified Dr. Hartman is for our task,” the governor gushed. “He has showed me the diploma on his office wall from Yale Medical School. That’s right, Yale! It’s a product of his outstanding calligraphy skills. He’s also dyslexic, has attempted to clone a chicken, and gave a full-fee, cash-paying patient one of his kidneys. And — he said it was okay to say this — he has a gay son and is a sometimes-recovering alcoholic! Wow! Just Wow!”
She said that Dr. Adams would serve as the posse’s leader and Dr. McCoy would be the group’s “Ramrod”.
Hearing that, McCoy said loudly, “Of course! I’m a doctor . . . not a coal miner!”
Gnome said she briefly considered making Lieutenant Governor Rowdy Roadmap the person to coordinate the fight against the virus but decided against it.
“Look, I know I’m not the sharpest tool in the box – especially when it comes to medical matters,” she said. “But that fool Rowdy is so dumb he has locked himself inside of his pickup FIVE times this year already. The capitol security guards and the Pierre police have had to find his truck and yell at him through the window how to push the ‘unlock’ switch on his key fob. We just can’t risk it.”
With the announcement of posse membership completed, Dr. Adams invited his fellow physicians down to the St. Charles Hotel Lounge for beers, poker, and to discuss their first actions.
“Can I come, too?” asked the cringingly annoying Rushmore State Governor.
“Sure,” replied Wade, the pathologist. “But bring your driver’s license and your checkbook, ‘cause you’re buying the first two rounds, Krispie. Alcohol, drugs, and spiritual fitness are the first lines of defense against this scourge and we need you to lead the counter-attack.”
“Oh, goody!” Gnome said excitedly. Then, turning to the members of the Pierre press corps, administrative staff, and a few curious legislators assembled in the meeting room she said, “I guess this gathering is adjourned. You know, I think I can talk that hot-looking Dr. Ben Casey to go dancing over in Ft. Pierre later. So, don’t bother waiting up for me . . . if you catch my drift.”