Pandemics, inflation and War…Oh, My!

You can ask bob anything you want…I have a degree in SCIENCE!

Jacob asks: So, is this World War III and the end of the world as we know it?

Hey Jacob, thanks for sending a question!

Well, folks always seem to think the end of the world is right around the corner. It’s like my 90-year-old mom. She’s been saying she’s on deaths door since she was 70…twenty years later she’s still kickin’ and don’t seem to be going anywhere.

So, yes and no. The world is definitely changing, it always does. Is it the end? Probably not.

I just bought a box of masks, you know, just in case. I don’t want to be scrambling for masks when everyone else is trying to buy ’em and they’re a dime a dozen right now. I hope the next, and each wave afterwards is less and less fatal to vulnerable folks, but you never know.

Some folks questioned masks, but there was never a doubt in my mind that a mask would be one level of protection (especially two years ago when there were no vaccines). So how did I know masks work?

I’ll explain from my own personal experience.

Twenty years ago, I worked at a provider’s relations firm for Florida Medicaid. One day, I went to the bathroom and noticed it smelled really bad in there. Like a pig had been gutted and the large intestines were split open and thrown about on the walls. But that wasn’t the best of it. In addition to the beautiful smell of human waste, I noticed an undeniable smell of car anti-freeze. I didn’t pay it much mind at the time and went about my business. The next day I had a flu that lasted two weeks. Fever, diarrhea, the whole works. I came to suspect, that if I walk into a smelly bathroom and there’s the sweet smell of anti-freeze in the air…that was a flu virus.

Some-time later, I go to the public bathroom at work, and I detect that sweet smell again. So, I take two squares of toilet paper and shove one in each nostril. I only breath out of my filtered nostrils. Low and behold, I didn’t get sick.

Just to test my theory one more time. The next time I detected that smell in a smelly bathroom, I didn’t use the toilet paper filter and sure enough, I was sick a day later.

From then on, every time I walked into a public bathroom and noticed an unquestionable smell of the anti-freeze, I plugged up my nostrils lickety-split-just-like-that.

It was embarrassing one time when I exited the bathroom and forgot to remove the filters. As I pranced down the halls with toilet paper sticking out of my nose, my boss noticed and asked, “Why is there toilet paper in your nose. I just laughed and said the bathroom was really smelly.

He just gave me a “Your crazy look.” And went about his business.

That look was compounded by the fact, that previously that summer, he caught me in the employee breakroom, sitting on the counter with my feet in the sink filled with water. It seemed crazy to him, but it was all common sense. They kept the building 60 degrees in the summer, and I was freezing. So, on my break, I filled up the sink with hot water, took off my shoes and put my feet in the nice warm water. That increased my body temperature, so I could concentrate on work. Yep, what-ever-it-takes to do a good job…I’M A COMPANY MAN!!!

Still, he thought I was acting like a crazy person.

Anyways, any kind of filter in the nose helps when there’s a virus around. I just knew this from experience.

So, when the pandemic hit two years ago and the CDC said wear masks, I was Johnny-On-The-Spot about it.

So, if there’s another wave, wear a mask. But only if you want to live.

Speaking of toilet paper. How weird was it that people went Ga-Ga over toilet paper when the pandemic first started. It was just weird.

Didn’t affect me. When we had the big toilet paper shortage, our family had enough to last until the shortage ended. I didn’t have any divine insight, I’m just lazy. We got 3 bathrooms and I didn’t like running toilet paper to different bathrooms, so I just stocked each room with a six pack of the extra thick rolls that barely fit in the roller. Turns out each roll lasts at least a week, so 18 rolls lasted a little more than 4 months. Dumb luck.

Sometimes its better to be lucky than smart.


Coming next: It’s the end of the world as we know it…

Song in my head:

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Bob Senitram

Webmaster and editor of I obtained a bachelor's degree in micro-biology around the turn of the century but was quickly tracked down and forced to return it to its rightful owner and pay a $25 fine. *** A fan of science fiction, I started this website in 1999 as a portal for science fiction stories that have never been published. *** Completely devoid of talent, I decided to call on the public to supply content. Shortly afterwards Stephen and I started writing weekly columns and have continued to this day.

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