The inquisitive one, having called the doctor in a panic, finally got the doctor on the line.
“How can I help you?” said the doctor.
“I have COVID-19!” shouted the inquisitive one.
“Okay. What are your symptoms?”
“I’ve been coughing!”
“Okay. Anything else?”
“I have a stomachache!”
“A plant is growing out of my left ear!”
“A plant is growing out of your left ear?”
“Yes! I think it’s celery. But it might be cilantro. They’re hard to tell apart as seedlings, you know?”
“Also, doctor! A worm is living inside my bellybutton! And I don’t know what to do!”
“When I try to pull it out, it stretches, but it doesn’t break, or die, or come out of my bellybutton!”
“It’s gray, with brown stripes!”
“So I was worried, and so I stuck a thermometer in boiling water for 3 minutes, and it said ‘250 degrees Fahrenheit.’ Which seems elevated to me! And so that’s why I think I have COVID-19!”
“And you know those flat white mushrooms that grow on trees, in damp forests?
“Something that looks like those are growing out of my toenails!”
“Oh! I almost forgot to tell you! When I try to comb my hair, birds fly out!”
“Listen. Have you showered lately?”
“As soon as we get off the phone, I would like you to take a shower. Okay?”
“COUGH COUGH,” said the inquisitive one.
“And watch that cough!”
“What do you mean; how do you watch a cough? People who have COVID-19 can’t taste coughs, and they can’t smell coughs, and they can’t see coughs, either. That’s what I read in the news!”
“When I said, ‘Watch that cough!’ what I meant was, ‘Call me if you can’t breathe!'”
“How am I supposed to call you if I can’t breathe?”
“If I get a phone call, and I don’t hear breathing on the other end of the line, I’ll know it’s you.”
“Okay. That makes sense!”
“Now, go take a shower!” ordered the doctor, and hung up.
And that’s just what the inquisitive one did.