“I’ll be in a little late. I have an appointment with my allergist,” I said. “They’re going to do a prick test.”
My legal assistant didn’t miss a beat.
“I could probably save you some time with that,” she said.
The nurse who administered the test had an entire panel of food extracts. She shot my arm and we waited.
“I’ve been doing this for 20 years. We never used to see food allergies. Now I do at least one food test a day.”
“That does seem high. I wonder why.”
She leaned in and whispered. “I think the food makers and the drug companies are in cahoots.”
I wanted to ask what possible motive there would be for such collusion but she had already escaped the asylum.
“The drug companies are evil. You realize they’ve had a cure for cancer for years but they’re keeping it under wraps because the medical establishment would lose so much money. Look it up. It’s all over the internet,” she continued.
I slouched deeper and deeper into my chair until the timer mercifully sounded. She did a thorough examination of the welts forming on my arm.
“Looks like you’re allergic to nuts,” she said without a hint of self-awareness.
“I already knew that,” I smiled.
They’re everywhere, these conspiracy theorists. With the fiftieth anniversary of the Kennedy assassination, it’s a paranoid’s Mardi Gras.
“Oswald was a pawn of the CIA.”
“LBJ killed Kennedy.”
“The mob orchestrated the hit.”
I don’t buy in to conspiracy theories. 9/11 was an inside job? The NASA moon landing was a fake? Drug companies colluding with food manufacturers? I don’t think so.
I will confess to just a touch of paranoia, the seeds of which were sown at an early age. When I was five or six I was upset about some awful oppression.
“Everyone is against me!” I shouted in protest.
“Don’t be absurd,” said my Mom. “Not everyone even knows you.”
I developed a healthy distrust for anyone who kept me from doing what I wanted to do. My seventh grade teacher, Mrs. Pulley, who sent me to after school detention an inordinate number of times, was conspiring with the Theisen family to keep me from jumping on their trampoline. I’m certain that Dan Andrews and Blake Bailey acted in concert to hide Mr. Andrews’ collection of Playboy magazines from me in eighth grade.
These days my conspiracy theories are more “con” than “racy.” They’re usually designed to fit my immediate circumstance. Everyone knows that our City Council manipulates the downtown red light sequences to up their traffic ticket revenues. Ever since I refused to add a dollar for a cure for cancer at check-out, Tom Thumb has made all of the plastic bags in the produce section impossible to open. Don’t even get me started on how they stopped selling pickled ginger because “no one was buying it.” Yeah right.
I also know that professional yard crews have secretly tampered with the string spools on weed eaters so as to render them inoperable after the first use. This act of piracy alone has cost me untold amounts in lawn care expenses. And Home Depot just continues to turn a blind eye.
The “powers that be” denied TCU admission to the Big 12 for years. We finally joined, only to be saddled with a lousy offensive coordinator who prevents us from winning any games. That conspiracy runs deep.
Come to think of it, this 24 hour surveillance by the Illuminati is a little disconcerting. And by Illuminati, of course, I’m referring to the AARP.
The NSA and Google are spying on us. Yesterday I started a search with “How to…” and it auto filled the rest of the query box with “…twerk.” Coincidence? Not likely.
Should I be worried? I’m not sure. The only known terror organization I’ve ever joined was a trial membership in Hair Club for Men. Those bastards still won’t leave me alone.
What if my online actions are misinterpreted and my search terms paint a sinister picture?
Shortly after the Boston Marathon bombing, a woman who had been doing internet searches for pressure cookers was picked up by the FBI for questioning. It turns out her husband was on a different computer searching for one way plane tickets to Yemen.
So I asked my wife: “What are you doing on the computer?”
“Looking at bed sheets” she replied.
Then I asked my daughter.
“Watching a movie on Netflix” she said.
If there’s a jihad by the Muslin Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, we’re in trouble.
Upon further reflection, my paranoia is starting to flourish. My nurse called to tell me that the Allergist was prescribing an antihistamine. When I went to pick it up I was required to produce two forms of ID and insurance card and sign a waiver. Then the pharmacist told me that if I signed up to become a member of AARP I would receive a free gift- a jar of mixed nuts. Conspiracy or coincidence? Look it up. It’s all over the internet.