by William Reick
Today, I , Jonas Salk, successfully inoculated a case of poliomyelitis. I have created a vaccine that shall end this infectious disease spread by the poliovirus. Though my efforts are unorthodox, I assure you, my brothers and sisters in science, that I have changed the world. This discovery will radically reduce the infant paralysis rate all over the globe.
Through my research at the University of Michigan and Mount Sinai Hospital, I’ve learned that the key to battling polio is shrinking myself down to a microscopic level so that I can river-raft my way through a child’s immune system. From there, my kickboxing training takes over, and defeating the virus becomes only a matter of muscle memory. Each uppercut weakens the virus little-by-little, until finally the polio has been vanquished. From there, I either rappel through the intestinal tract, or I kind of hang around for a little bit. Typically, if my wife, Françoise Gilot, has prepared a particularly fine supper, I will exit the child’s body as quickly as possible. Sometimes I even forget to wash my hands! Other times, like when Françoise’s mother stays at our house, I’ll take my time and stay inside for a while.
I am a virologist as accomplished as any, yet even I have trouble river-rafting through the immune system of small children. That is why I’ve taken to the world’s great rivers in search of skilled rafters. Men and women from each of the seven continents will be trained in the shrinking process, before being swallowed by children with polio. From there, their abilities to navigate will be put to the test as they travel through the child’s immune system. Each rafter will lead a two-person expedition, and will be accompanied by one of the top kickboxers in the world (only brown belts or higher). With any luck, The Jonas Salk Mini-River Commandos will be deployed to every child in need. And when their job is done, my Commandos will un-shrink back to normal size, returning to their families and careers.
Thank you, in advance, for being open to my unconventional means. Your future praise is worth the scrutiny to which I was subjected while conducting my research. I’m sure a Nobel Prize would make us all even Steven.
Bill Reick is a sketch comedy writer from Philadelphia