Conversation Overheard at the Decongestant Factory
Second Worker: "True....true....but let's also make sure we use that special cotton. You know--the one that shreds into pieces no matter how good a grip you get on it? We don't want 'em getting it all out on the first try!"
First Worker: "Good point. Glad you thought of that. You know, for sheer irony, let's make sure one of the pills is broken anyway. I like having them pull the cotton out, only to find out that it didn't actually do any good. Now, what about the lid?"
Second Worker: "Whoa....hold on there! The lid? What are you--a rank amateur? You put the cotton in, and then you take this steel reinforced disk of material that looks deceptively thin and fragile, and you superglue it over the opening to the bottle. A real pro leaves just enough lip around the edge of the bottle that it LOOKS like you could get ahold of it but not enough to ACTUALLY get ahold of it. Of, if you prefer, you can leave enough for them to get ahold of, but make sure the lip of paper will tear off if they do. It's all in the details, you know."
First Worker: "Wow, you're really good! Okay, so we superglue this paper on....then what? No--don't tell me. The lid? How about one of those "push down while turning" dealies but make sure that it won't actually come off unless the sickie can exert approximately 500 psi while rotating in a clockwise direction during a full moon while standing within two miles of the equator?"
Second Worker: "Good, good. But another nice touch is to make sure it's slippery. That way, if it unexpectedly pops off, it will fly out of the sickie's fingers and land somewhere on the bathroom floor. That will require the sickie to bend over, thus launching a tsunami of snot to go crashing against the insides of his or her skull. If only we could universalize bathroom floor color so that we could make the lids blend in, it would be perfect."
First Worker: "I like that. The slippery lid is nice. But let's go one better. Let's put a cellophane sleeve around the bottle, that's more or less shrunk to it so that it's impossible to get ahold of it anywhere. And I think it's more tormenting to have it cover only about a third of the bottle-you know, the part where the lid meets the bottle plus a little above and below. That exposed bottle really taunts the sickie, who has the objective in plain sight but still can't get to it!"
Second Worker: "Nicely done! But I'll go you one better. Let's make it look like it has a perforated line, but not really give it one. The sickies will be convinced that if they just keep working on this little dotted line, it will actually tear away! Man, I crack myself up!"
First Worker: "You know, I do worry a bit, though."
Second Worker: "Worry? About what??"
First Worker: "Well, what if the sickies get REALLY frustrated? What if they use a scissor or something in desperation and end up cutting themselves?"
Second Worker: "Oh no, that's not a problem. We make the bandaid boxes, too. Wait until you see the new fake cardboard we came up with. You'd never guess it was steel."
Bastards. Not that I'm bitter or anything.
I am so grateful for all of your kind wishes and I swear, I'm not ignoring you for any reason other than, as my mother used to say, I feel as though I've been shot at and missed, and shit at and hit. My lungs are rebelling and my immune system has apparently decided the best solution is to periodically attempt to boil me alive by raising my temp to 102. It's been fun. Still, I do believe I'm turning a corner (hopefully the one that leads to the house where the little assholes who design the pill bottles live) and should be back to making comments and generally being semi-human again soon. For now, I'm going to go lay on the couch like a hot, snotty log. Love and germ free hugs to all of you.