I recently received a letter from the Department of Health of the City of Chicago. (Lot's of "of"s.) They wrote:
The Chicago Department of Public Health Communicable Disease Program has been notified that you/your child recently had medical diagnostic testing performed.
In our program, we gather information that can be used to prevent citizens from being exposed to diseases of public importance.
A brief, confidential conversation with you would be very beneficial as we carry out this function.
Now. Were I not an individual who believed in conspiracy and an avid writer of dystopian societies, fishy this would not sound. However, fishy it does.
It is signed by ________, Communicable Disease Control Investigator, II. That means there's a I and likely a III. But my measly Salmonella D only qualified for this level of investigation.
I understand why they'd want to talk to me. I get it. But at the end of the day, the story has nothing to do with the city of Chicago and I know that I brought it on myself. I get it. I get it completely.
Do they want to hear about the contraction itself? Are they interested at all in the sordid details of my brief affair with Salmonella? Are they interested in the irony I find in the fact that I just published a book on the fact that I occasionally soil myself? Are they interested in hearing my reactions to the process at the doctor's office and the information that I relayed? Are they interested to know that I think taking your own fecal sample is bullshit? Really, it's disgusting. I won't elaborate, but if you ever find yourself with those tiny shovels, you're not alone.
So, what does it all mean? Where does it all originate from? How can I be so certain? BELIEVE me. I'm certain. I just find it mystifying that I was the only one.
Chicken is the gateway drug to Salmonella. Be afraid, be weary and for Christ's sake, cook the bird to temperature. If served a piece not to temperature, be better than me. Speak up. It can be hard. Maybe it's someone very close to you serving the bird. Maybe it's someone new and special. Whatever the fucking case, get with it. You don't deserve that burden. Get out of there as fast as you can and feel no regret.
Salmonella: from what I hear, my experience could have been worse by far. But that said, it could have been better by a million. Don't trust birds that were once dinosaurs and don't sacrifice your health for the feelings of others.
I recognize that this may sound cryptic. I don't mean it to be that way, but it must remain.
Thank got for antibiotics.