The Luv Doc: A Little Dahoo Dores
We have to make space in our hearts for the paste-eaters like Greg Abbott and Dan Patrick
Dear Luv Doc,
As crazy as things are right now with COVID and the Delta variant I cannot believe there are still people who refuse to get vaccinated. One of those people is my brother-in-law and the thought of this drives me bonkers. It doesn't matter what sort of facts or statistics I quote to him, he won't budge on his stance. Earlier in the summer when the numbers were dropping and we were feeling optimistic, my sister and I rented a cabin for our families for Labor Day weekend. Knowing what I know now, I wouldn't have even suggested it, but now we are locked in and I really dread having to be around my brother-in-law – not just because I am afraid we might unknowingly give him COVID, but because I might try to murder him for being such an idiot. I am seriously considering just giving my sister our half of the rental and not going, but why should my family have to suffer because of her husband's ignorance? What should we do?
– COVID Cabin Concerns
Your brother-in-law wouldn't happen to be from Lampasas, would he? It might be Bill Gates' microchip talking, but I am having a serious case of déjà vu. I am beginning to feel like anti-vaxxer brother-in-laws are becoming a bit of a literary trope in the Luv Doc oeuvre, like Type 2 diabetes, genital herpes statistics, and gratuitous scatalogical references. Well, fiddlesticks, I just exhausted my entire bag of Hail Mary footballs in one sentence, so strap yourself in for either several hundred more words of unimaginative tedium, or an unexpected blossoming of keen insight and originality.
If I were a betting man though, I would put my money on your brother-in-law being a morbidly obese ex-quarterback with genital herpes and explosive diarrhea – at least for the purposes of this column. That would make him infinitely more tolerable than a freedom-loving patriot/constitutional scholar who can't seem to wrap his head around how mRNA vaccines work. I would go into it in depth, but I know you've already pissed into that wind, so let's just agree that they work a whole lot better than cattle dewormer. Also, I don't want anyone to get the idea that I am unsympathetic to the plight of the intellectually challenged just because I recently invested a few thousand dollars in Merck stock. There is nothing more heartbreaking than a fellow whose limited intelligence is thrown wholly into the service of a harebrained idea, unless perhaps it's a fellow with limited intelligence and a nasty case of cattle worms. I don't see the harm in an advice columnist making some extra cheddar based solely on a P.T. Barnum quote and a quick scan of the daily headlines.
Sometimes however, as I am gleefully thumbing through the dividend statements from all the morally questionable corporations I've invested in, I feel a tiny twinge of guilt, and, not unlike that brief moment in "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" when the Grinch reaches the mountain summit and stops thrashing his adorable puppy/reindeer just long enough to hear the faint, joyous singing of the Whos down in Whoville, I have an epiphany and my heart snaps out of its frame and I think, "Maybe, just maybe ... stupidity isn't something to ridicule and revile but rather, a tragic malady that deserves ... no ... demands compassion and empathy, even when that stupidity endangers our very lives." Isn't that what Jesus would do? I mean, to be fair, Jesus never made a dime on the stock market and in fact, seemed a little hostile toward the financial sector in general, but he had mad people skills. He could have totally worked in HR if he hadn't gotten held back by upper management.
So, as much as I would like to explosive diarrhea all over your anti-vaxxing brother-in-law, I am going to sing you a little "dahoo dores" and suggest that you show him some empathy. Not everybody has Michael Jordan's fadeaway or Einstein's noggin. We have to make space in our hearts for the paste-eaters like Greg Abbott and Dan Patrick. As far as the health-risk aspect, you and your family could take a COVID test just prior to Labor Day weekend and insist that your sister's family do the same – especially if either of you have unvaccinated children. That might get a little pricey if you have large families, but it's worth the peace of mind. If your brother-in-law refuses to accommodate your "irrational" fears of him infecting your children, then I guess, unfortunately, you are going to have to pay for his stupidity and let him and your sister and their family have the cabin all to themselves and his deep, deep thoughts.