Letter: No Side Effects

Letter to the Editor

“April is the cruelest month, breeding lilacs out of the dead land” – T.S. Eliot, The Waste Land 

I was off in the wilds much of April, tracking down Alt right Dr Seuss disciples, in the Carpathian Alps of Transylvania. Back in the civilized world, much was starting to grow out of the permafrost. Bill Gates, once the world’s richest and most intelligent men, was busy microchipping millions of vaccine recipients from his underground lair, Xanadu 2.0 in Seattle. Florida Congressman Matt Gaetz, one of the world’s dumbest men, was working on altering his 17-year-old girlfriend’s ID to get her past the legal limit for statutory rape.It was starting to feel like 1974 all over again, but with a modern twist. In Georgia, motorists waited for hours in the hot sun to fill up garbage bags full of highly flammable gasoline. Meanwhile, back here in Malibu, I watched Lamborghini drivers pay for their $200 fill ups with bitcoin at the Las Flores Chevron machine. Democratic elders Biden and Carter inched toward their 100th birthdays. On the day Republicans lost power to a supposed Black Muslim President, Dick Cheney rolled onto Marine 2 in his wheelchair and gave a Dr Strangelove style salute before disappearing into the clouds. His son, Lon Cheney, was also forced from power, but this time by Republicans pushing the “Big Lie”—that he was a she, and thus could not be trusted with the sacred torch of white virtue. Well, at least the cloud of Covid has lifted a bit. Why not get a shot or two, and return to the glee of that 100-story office tower? It’s impossible to fit a microchip into a needle. Better to do as you are told. Return to your desks, as the man from the Port Authority commands. And watch as Mohamad Atta flies a 737 right into your office conference room. “How was the vaccine shot, Dad?” my kids ask at dinner. “Any side effects?” they snicker. “Not a one,” I reply from the kitchen. “Melinda and I feel badly about the breakup, but our foundation will not miss a beat,” I repeat from deep within…

Dan Bercu