Today I called the pediatrician's office to discuss a mild rash Charlie had developed on his legs and feet. "I don't know if it's related," I told the nurse, "but it developed the day we gave him peanut butter for the first time. I'm wondering whether it could be a reaction to that."
Do you know the very first thing the nurse told me?
Come on, guess.
Oh, you'll never get it, because it is just that stupid.
She said, "Okay, well, don't give him any more."
[Phone rings.] Yes, hello, is this the nurse? Hi. Yeah, listen, I suspect my toddler is having an adverse reaction to a well-known allergen that causes hundreds of episodes of anaphylaxis every year. Nah, it's just a rash. So do you think I should give him more? See if we can get the real party started?
You do? Great. Hang on a second. [Covering mic on phone.] Charlie! C'mere. I need you to eat some more smooth 'n' creamy death paste. I know you're still kind of full from that fiberglass — sorry, I know, I know, I mean cotton candy. Sure, I can wait till you've finished stuffing those big handfuls of poison ivy down your sweatpants. Be sure to crunch it up good first. But leave the yellowjacket nest wrapped up in your blanket for now, kiddo. It's not polite to chew bees at the table.
[Returning to phone.] Okay, nurse, we're set. Oh, one more thing, if you don't mind: he has this weird laceration around his ankle and I'm wondering...ah, step in the bear trap again! Of course. Got it.
Thanks for the help. [Click.]