New York, 5/3/2019 (Note the proper way to write the date!)
Dear Friends Across The Pond,
Medical research has gone to shit! Literally!
The New York Times reports that the US pharmaceutical industry is prepared to spend billions researching human feces. Apparently the living microbiota in your poop can be used to heal an ailing person’s bowels in a process called fecal microbiota transplantation or FMT. For real! You can’t make this shit up!
Some 500,000 Americans suffer from bowel and intestinal disorders and some 30,000 die each year. Most of these issues are caused by the use (or overuse) of antibiotics. Transferring “heathy poop” (and its healthy biota) to an affected bowel helps rebuild healthy biota in the receiver’s intestinal tract. There’s talk that successful fecal transplants can cure not only ailments like Clostridioides difficile (C diff), but autism, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, to name a few.
Here’s where it gets weird. The US Food and Drug Administration is trying to figure out if taking someone else’s biota and putting it in your ass is a drug or more like a transplant or transfusion. The answer will drive how this shit gets regulated and how much money Big Pharma (or should I say Big Poop) can make from it. And Big Poop is already lobbying FDA to get its way.
I can imagine sometime in the not-so-distant future, my young daughter is ill. I can’t afford the prescription shit she needs so I leave my apartment in the dead of a winter’s night in New York City, walk several blocks, turn down a dark alley and wait behind the garbage dumpster. There I meet Jimmy ‘The Squirts’ Trucchio. He prompts me with the challenge phrase: “Nice night for a drink.” “Bottoms up!” I reply. He sells me a half-pound zip-lock bag of ‘Chicago Brown’. “This is the good shit,” he says.
I race home with the stuff under my coat to keep it warm. I mix it up in the kitchen blender, then transfuse it into my daughter’s anus with a funnel and a short length of garden hose. But the treatment fails. The black market shit didn’t measure up to quality standards and now my daughter is infected with a fatal STD!
In my dystopia, I can also see giant shit factories, ten floors high with wood and straw floors, where the American labor force sits, chained to a toilet for eight hours a day while being force-fed spicy Mexican food. No free-range shit here.
Have no fear though, my British friends. You are immune from this shit. NHS will buy you all the crap you need.
And in this dark and noxious future I foresee, will you remember me, the prophet of poop? Think of me, won’t you, the next time you go to the lavatory – or the loo, the bog, the privy, the dunny, the Jacks, the House of Office, the khazi, the netty, the vin, or the WC?
Fletch: I wonder how Fat Sam gets the stuff.
Grease: I have no idea. Sam never leaves the beach. He sits in that chair. He’s out of shit. Suddenly he gets up, he’s got shit!
Die Hard: With a Vengeance
John McClane: [Zeus has picked up a stray gold ingot and attempts to carry it out with him] Put that shit down.
Zeus: Is this some black-shit again?
John McClane: Hey will you stop that racial shit?
Robocop: You have the right to an attorney.
Street Thug: What is this shit?
Breaking Bad, Season 2
Walter: Did you learn nothing from my chemistry class?
Jesse: No. You flunked me, remember? You prick! Now let me tell you something else. This ain’t chemistry – this is art. Cooking is art. And the shit I cook is the bomb, so don’t be telling me.
Walter: The shit you cook is shit. I saw your set-up. Ridiculous. You and I will not make garbage. We will produce a chemically pure and stable product that performs as advertised. No adulterants. No baby formula. No chili powder.
Picture: Pills by Mohamed_Hassan on Pixabay
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