Back at the turn of the century, I had a major coffee habit. Periodically I would become racked with guilt about this and shamefully decide to go cold turkey, resolved to shed my dependence on the stuff once and for all. One of these deprivation cycles happened when I was on a trip to Florida for a conference. Probably I had to go without while traveling and realized what a crutch it had become and how pathetic it is to leave a perfectly nice hotel room just to feed your coffee habit with some nasty cheap hotel sludge. I came home from Florida with a new resolve to stand on my own two feet.
Checking the health news on my return, I saw that West Nile virus was discovered in some sentinel chickens in Florida (they put chickens in cages out in the swamps and such and see what they get infected with, I think). People were encouraged to look out for symptoms of headache, fatigue, disorientation. And guess what? I had all those! Oh my!
I promptly started hyperventilating, sure that I had been infected. It was the only explanation. I was on the CDC website lickety split to see what I should do to report my participation in the outbreak. I was bound to, in my dying breaths, inform the proper health officials of my participation in the outbreak.
In the midst of my alarm, a friend and coworker who knew about my recent coffee fast suggested (a little more kindly than this, but not much), "Dumb#ss! Why don't you have a cup of coffee and see if that cures your West Nile Virus?"
I did, and I was cured. Imagine! A narrow escape.