Searching for the Cure – August 7, 2020

Good evening, ladies and gentlemen, this is Harbin Factminder, here with this week’s edition1 of People Need to Know, brought to you by Azalea Toiletries, who remind you, “You may not look your prettiest, but there’s no reason you can’t smell good.” 

“Hold the bottle higher, Harbin!”

“I’m on camera, Giselle, you can’t just blurt stuff out like that.  People will think I’m an idiot!”

The name of the show is People Need to Know, Harbin.  People watch, they’re not clueless.  Hold the bottle higher.  Azalea is paying for viewers to see their product.  Sound and video are separate, Harbin.  We’ll edit later.”


“C’mon, Harbin, you are on camera. We can’t edit your lips out all the time.  As much as we’d like to…”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“For Pete’s sake, Harbin, no asides!  Get the show moving! This isn’t Hollywood.”

“Today’s report comes to you from ED&GA Labs of Meccabuc Pharmaceuticals. I’m here with doctors Swartz and Lipscombe.  Smack inside the actual laboratory.  Just look at all the scientific stuff!”


“Dr. Swartz, for our audience, can you tell us what ED&GA Labs does?”

“Sure, Harlan…”

“That’s Harbin…”

“Yeah, right.  ED&GA stands for Epidemic Diseases and Genetic Abnormalities.  We profile certain very troublesome diseases, genetic makeup, life cycle, mutating tendencies, and so on.  So the biochemical side of the lab can effectively model and manufacture vaccines and treatment therapies.”

“Like the current Covis19?”

“That’s Covid19, Harlan.  Co-VID.”


“Whatever.  Yes.  Covid19.  And we’re close to nailing the full genetic profile of the little bas…”

Doctor!  We don’t want this to turn into a bleepfest here.  Remember we have cameras rolling and you represent Meccabuc Pharmaceuticals.  Keep it family, would you?  Crew, gimme a different camera on this so we can edit soundtracks around these two idiots…”

“Right!  Got it.”

“Yeah. Okay, Harlan.  We’re really close to a complete profile on Covid19.  Make it a cakewalk to produce a vaccine.  And a course of treatment for those who contract the disease before the vaccine hits the market.”

“Well that’s a noble cause, Doctor Swartz.”

“Not why we’re in it Harbin.”

“That’s Har…  Oh.  You got it right.  What do you mean, ‘not why we’re in it’?”


“Excuse me, Harlan, what Doctor Swartz really meant to say was…”

“That’s Harbin, Doctor Lipscombe.  What did Doctor Swartz imply?”

“Well, Harlan…”


“Yes, of course, whatever.  Doctor Swartz meant much of our energy and resources are being siphoned-off to solve this Covid19 thing.  Time and money we can’t invest now in other promising research we had underway when Covid19 came along.  Most of it in the Genetic Abnormalities areas.”

“I see.”

“The government insists, you know, Harlan, we really have no choice in the matter.  When all is said and done, for the money we’ve wasted for speed and diverted facilities, there will be little profit in any Covid19 vaccine or cure.  For example, here in this country, depending on the alignment of elections and marketable product, we may be forced to make our results available free to the public. Probably even pay for distribution.”

“That’s Harbin.”


“Harbin, not Harlan, Doctor Lipscombe.” 


“What projects have been put off, Doctor Lipscombe?”

“Well, Har… whatever. We are so close to identifying the ‘Stupid’ gene.”


“Yes.  Stupidity is caused by a broken gene.  What made it so difficult to identify is that it appears to have self-mended, but with something less than perfection, and is passed on to offspring. Can you imagine the financial gains for the country first making ‘Stupid’ vaccinations mandatory?  We’re not talking the sad cases of mental deficiency.  We may be centuries away there.”

“I don’t understa…. I mean, can you clarify for the audience, Doctor Lipscombe?”

“Like for example the thousands of people espousing law-and-order who use lawlessness to register their dissent.  Or the man sent grocery shopping, finding eggs at one dollar and forty-nine cents for a dozen or a dollar and fifty-three cents for eighteen, opting for the dozen because it’s cheaper.”

“I have a better example.”

“Yes, Doctor Swartz?”

“If we develop a ‘Stupid’ vaccine which even repairs damage post-inoculation, which seems doable, the parents who will insist their children not be protected.  Sadly, we are talking about an inherited genetic defect.”

We need a pause for commercial here…”

“We’ll be back with Doctors Swartz and Lipscombe after this commercial break.”

“Wow, doctors!  That’s interesting stuff.”

“That’s nothing!”

“There’s more?”

“I mentioned Covid19 was holding back a lot of research.  Here’s one for you.  You know the political party in control here today?”


“That’s hereditary.”


“And curable.”

Okay.  Now you need to pick up after commercial.  Ready?  We’re rolling…”

“So. Doctor Lipson…”


“Lipscombe.  Yeah. So, About the other side of ED&GA.  The ‘GA’ side. Anything interesting going on there you can share with viewers?”


“No?  Doctor Swartz, do you have anything to add?”


“I mean during commercial you said ED&GA was close on several…”

“Don’t remember anything.”

“Me either.”

1 – No such anything, folks.  This is all fiction.  Humor.  Satire.  Pay attention.

Published by spwilcen

Retired career IT software engineer, or as we were called in the old days, programmer, it's time to empty my file cabinet of all the "creative" writing accumulated over the years - toss most of it, salvage and publish what is worthwhile.

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