Ebola is Hilarious (yes the disease)

Ebola is Hilarious (yes the disease)

In the right contexts, Ebola, like all things, is hilarious. In the wrong context, if you actually contract Ebola for example, it’s not funny at all. Thankfully for us, it’s a disease that you would find listed under the definition of “rare.” Unless you’re hanging out in the Congo, the odds of catching it are next to zero. Even if you are hanging out in the Congo, the odds are in the same neighborhood. Granted the odds of contracting its nasty cousin, Marburg’s Disease, are pretty good in comparison.

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But let’s not dwell on the unpleasant aspects of a disease that kills you in a matter of days. Let’s dwell on the silver lining. What silver lining you might ask? How could you take a disease that liquifies your insides until you erupt blood from every orifice and find the up side? Good question… still working on that.

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The thing is that Ebola is one of those extremes in medicine that you end up drawing parallels with all the time. We all have a coworker or loose acquaintance (because no one admits to being friends with these people) who takes hypochondria to an uncomfortable, if not painful level. Let’s call this person “Steve.”

Not only does Steve think he has a strange new disease every week, but it’s going to kill him in the next five minutes. Every five minutes. And you wind up saying, “Oh shut up, Steve. It’s not like you have Ebola.”

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Thankfully Steve is never actually sick, though sometimes you wish he would contract that flesh-eating disease that he’s been convinced he’s had for two months. Just on his tongue… and just long enough that his whining would come to a blissful end.

The thing is, Ebola is the extreme. Saying “It’s not like you have Ebola” to someone with a cold is like telling someone who’s complaining that their TV’s reception is blurry that they should be grateful that their eyes haven’t been gouged out by a roving pack of cannibals. This is about the same level of extreme rarity combined with pain as telling someone that they should be glad they don’t have Ebola.

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How do I come to know (or pretend to know) so much about the disease? I read The Hot Zone in college during an epidemics class. And yes, it’s full of information that I partially remember. So call me the resident expert. Besides, I write fantasy, so you’re not here for facts in the first place.

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But something like Ebola is perfect for fantasy. A disease that’s so powerful it kills you in a matter of days. It sounds like something out of fiction too when you read into what it’s trying to do when it kills you. In essence, it’s working overtime to turn you – into it. It just goes too far in the process and liquifies all of those helpful membranes that keep your insides from becoming your outsides. This provides Ebola’s number one problem in becoming a pandemic – it kills itself out too quickly.

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Which makes studying it near impossible, because it’s always gone by the time anyone knows it ever happened. Conversely, Marburg’s is so much more terrifying in that it doesn’t kill its host so quickly. Thus you have time to feel sick, get on a plane, and spread the bloody flux around the globe. Wow, this got morbid again. How about another comic?

marburgs-disease-is-distracting

So keep telling Steve the hypochondriac that he should be glad he doesn’t have Ebola. And if you really want to mess with him, leave the Wikipedia page for it up on his computer when he walks away. Be sure to leave a note on his desk “noticed you weren’t looking so good, made me think you might have this.”

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Like this post? Share it, then go read up on the ten reasons I hate moths. You’ll laugh.

  • Jkmd

    hahahahahaha roflmtobtwsrrfsrt-siank,sl

    (rolling on floor laughing my tail off because that was some really really funny stuff right there – seriously I am not kidding, still laughing … for the uninitiated)

    😀

  • Linde

    Awesome! That’s hilarious!!