Have you complained of a scratchy throat of the sniffles yet this year? If so, prepare to feel like an asshole!
So basically, a little girl named Sierra Jane went camping with her family in Colorado and kind of touched a dead squirrel. Apparently SJ is an animal lover and wanted to bury the squirrel, but I’m going to go ahead and guess that she may have been playing the Poke-the-Carcass-with-a-Stick game. Come on, what kid hasn’t prodded a dead bird with a twig? Or is that just a Maine thing? My parents used to always warn my brother and me to stay away from dead fish and whatnot but we always got curious with them. I guess maybe we were just into some sick woodsy shit. We’ll assume that SJ was more kind-hearted than us and just wanted to have an animal funeral.
Anyway, Sierra Jane had her sweatshirt on the ground near the squirrel and some PLAGUE-CARRYING BUGS nested in it and proceeded to bite her skin. (That sound you hear is me boiling up some bleach to disinfect all of my clothes. It was a crazy weekend, they needed it anyways.) SJ got sick with the barfs a few days later and when she had a seizure, her parents took her to the hospital.
Doctors immediately ran tests to figure out what was going on. They took an x-ray that didn’t show anything weird, but she had a 107* temperature so they shipped her off to another hospital. SJ’s condition worsened and she had delirium, hallucinations, and disseminated intravascular coagulopathy (a condition that prevents your blood from clotting). Her doctors asked her parents if SJ had been exposed to anything weird and they disclosed that yes, she had come in contact with not only the dead squirrel but also “mouse droppings in chicken coops and a dead skunk”. What the actual fuck? Somebody give these guys a Parent of the Year Award and mail SJ some Beanie Babies and playing cards and some other safe toys for tots.
After more tests and exams, SJ’s doctors confirmed that she had contracted the Bubonic Plague, the disease that wiped out one-third of Europe’s population in the 14th century. The Bubonic Plague. I’ll let that sink in.
The Bubonic Plague! The Bubonic Plague! The Bubonic Plague!!!!!!
Doctors loaded her up with antibiotics, she’s stable now, and she should be home by the end of this week. So yeah, Sierra Jane is a badass. Also, I want to contact her Guardian Angel to see if s/he has weekend hours. I could use a favor or two.
My annual physical is coming up next month, and when my doctor asks me if I’ve quit smoking or started exercising, I’ll say “No, but I also haven’t come in contact with dead animals or their doodoo. So no, I don’t have the Bubonic Plague.” And then I will proudly stroll out of the clinic wearing only a johnny. When I get on the bus, nobody will look at me funny, because it is the bus, and this is Boston.
Little Sierra Jane was lucky and in all seriousness, I’m so glad that this story had a happy ending. She’s safe and on the mend. I can’t imagine how scary this must have been for her family. Get well soon, Sierra Jane.
This is the final nail in the coffin re: my theory that squirrels are Satan’s minions.