Happy birthday

A one-act play

Operator: Maryland Poison Control, how can I help you?

Me: Hi, my wife just got stung by a… (scrolling through pictures on phone) ‘saddleback moth’ caterpillar and she’s in a lot of pain. Do we need to go to urgent care?

Operator: Well, it’s usually not serious. It’s painful but it rarely lasts more than a few hours. Use scotch tape to pull out the needles, wash with soap and water, and apply ice to reduce swelling. Benadryl will help with the irritation, Tylenol for pain.

Me: Okay, great, thanks, we’ll do that.

Operator: No problem. Just for our demographic data, can I get some information?..

(asks a list of questions)

… and how old is your wife?

Me: "Well, funny you should ask. Today is her birthday.

Operator: …really?

Me: (sighs) Yes.

Operator: (laughing uncontrollably) …um, happy birthday?

Me: …Thanks. The party never ends here.

Operator: "Uh huh. Give her some Benadryl.

Wife (in background): ASK HIM IF I CAN KEEP DRINKING.