October 24, 2012 - A Frank Cerabino column from the Palm Beach, Fla. Post.
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News item . . .
When announcing the phone number for Florida Fungal Meningitis hotline this week, Gov Rick Scott inadvertently gave out the wrong phone number, directing Floridians to call a phone sex hotline to answer their questions. The meningitis outbreak is linked to a batch of tainted injectable steroids that were shipped to 76 facilities in 23 states, including Florida. Scott misread the 866-523-7339 hotline number; sending callers to a phone sexline that began with a woman's voice saying, "Hello boys . . ."
Hotline: Hello boys.
Caller: Is this the hotline?
Hotline: Couldn't be hotter.
Caller: Good. I've been having this stiff neck, and I hear that's a symptom.
Hotline: Ooh, you're so funny! Please tell me everything about your neck..
Caller: Well, it started yesterday and it hasn't let up. It seems to get stiffer by the hour.
Hotline: Oh, you poor boy. I'll bet you need some relief.
Caller: It's probably no big thing.
Hotline: I'll bet you it's bigger than you think.
Caller: Do you think so?
Hotline: Yes. I'm so glad you called. I want you to tell me everything.
Caller: OK. I think I'm running a fever.
Hotline: Ooh, this call is making me hot, too. Sooo hot.
Caller: You too? Did you get an injection recently?
Hotline: Mmm. Would you like to hear about it? Is that what you want.?
Caller: Actually, I thought we'd be talking about me.
Hotline: Yes, of course, I am so ready to talk about you.
Caller: I don't know if I have that fungal thing that's . . .
Hot line: Oh, don't worry, dear. I'm going to make you feel better. I'm putting on my tight white nurse's uniform now. Oh, it's way too tight. And short.
Caller. . . . and I've been dizzy all week.
Hotline: Maybe you just need to lie down and close your eyes and let your nurse take over.
Caller: OK. I'm ready. Let's get started.
Hotline; Not so fast, dear. Before we get started, you're going to have to give me your credit card information.
Caller: You medical people are all alike. Payment up front. Do you have an HMO?
Hotline: But I almost forgot Cinemax After Dark.
Caller: How expensive is this going to be?
Hotline: Depends how long we take.
Caller: When do you get off?
Hotline: Honey let's not get ahead of ourselves here. Now will that be MasterCard or Visa?
Caller: Wait a seond. What about lab tests?
Hotline: And I'll need the credit card expiration date.
Caller: How am I supposed to do the lab tests on the phone? second, What about the lab tests?sa?
Hotline: . . . and the three digit security code on the back of the card.
Caller: Aren't you going to need to draw some of my spinal fluid?
Hotline: Listen up, Pal. We're not talking about your fluids until I have that credit card information.
Caller: You know you seem way more interested in the money than in meningitis.
Hotline: Buddy, I don't even know where Gitis is, but I've had men from all over call me, and if they don't have money, we don't talk. That's the rules.
Hotline hangs up.
Caller: Stupid Obamacare!
Jim Sherman, Sr. is president of Sherman Publications, Inc. He has penned "Jim's Jottings" since 1955.