0 6 min 12 mths


by J.R. Dunn, American Thinker:

Rick took another sip of his beer. It was a Corona, a favorite of his, and much better than he’d been drinking the past few months. Melissa had bought him a six and put it in the fridge as a surprise for him.

In the other room he could hear the kids playing with their presents. He smiled at the sound of the game box, the shouts, the laughter. He’d had to sell his grandad’s pocket watch on Etsy to pay for it all, but it was worth it.

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Mona was speaking to the little ones, her voice a bit stern, playing at being Mom. He’d gone out of his way to be kind to Mona the past few weeks. She was sensitive, that girl. Early in the month after dinner she’d gone into what sounded like a canned speech about “climate change,” what they were calling global warming these days. Coral going extinct, islands disappearing, the whole song and dance, all of it in a hectoring voice that didn’t sound like her at all. Melissa thought she’d been imitating that Swede girl, the one at the UN. At last Mike had been unable to listen to any more of it and burst out, more harshly than he’d intended, “That’s the bullshit that cost me my job on the pipeline – don’t you understand that…?”

Mona had burst into tears and fled the room, Melissa close behind. He felt a flush of shame as he recalled it.

At least she hadn’t announced that she was actually a boy. They’d been spared that, anyway.

It would be a year next month that he had been out of work. The pipeline shut down without warning, and the COVID thing on top of it… He hoped they’d be able to keep the house. They had enough left in the bank for three more payments, but after that… He’d have to hit the bricks after the new year, get out and pick up anything at all just to keep them going. God, flipping burgers at his age…

The old bitterness arose within him, the same feeling he’d been fighting all the past year. Things had been going great. The country roaring right along, everybody doing well – and that meant everybody: the blacks, the Spanish, all of them, and what do they do? Cheat their way in and then just shut things down. COVID, the lockdowns, the pipeline… It was as if it was being done deliberately, out of sheer damned spite. As if they wanted to cause as much pain and misery as they could…

He heard footsteps and looked up to see Melissa coming into the room. “Sitting here with lights off?”

“Too lazy to get up.”

She smiled down at him. Her hand was at her throat, fingering the necklace that he’d bought her. Way too expensive, but only the best for his wife.

he sat down on the chair arm. “Santa was good to us this year.”

“Santa needs his head examined.”

She let out a little laugh and bent down to kiss him on the forehead. He put an arm around her. They would be all right. One way or another, they would be all right.

“Merry Christmas, sweetheart.”

#     #     #

A nurse caught up with him just as he was about to leave. A little breathless, she handed him a sheet of paper. “Dr. Fetter… we just got this from legal.”

He glanced at the sheet. The time stamp said six-thirty. It was nearly midnight now. “You just got this?”

She looked flustered. “Well… you know… with the staff shortages and all…”

“I know.” He returned his gaze to the sheet. A court order stating that patient Eric Hamlin must be administered a course of Ivermectin as requested by himself and his family.

He gritted his teeth. God, how he hated that. Everybody in the whole godforsaken world knew better than trained medical personnel. The nerve… You’d never catch him prancing into court to explain law to a judge.

He thought to himself. Hamlin… right down the corridor here. COVID patient, seriously impacted but lungs not yet compromised. He himself had prescribed Remdesivir, in accordance with hospital policy, but the patient had refused treatment. And…

And Hamlin was unvaxxed.

That made the decision for him. If Hamlin and his family wanted to play at being doctors, then he could play along. It wouldn’t hurt Hamlin to wait a few hours.

He handed the sheet back to the nurse. “Okay, nurse… that was you talking about the unvaxxed the other day, wasn’t it?”

She nodded.

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