Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Slow News Day In Florida

I'm starting to wonder exactly what in the heck qualifies for news down there in Florida. Seems like whatever it is, they might be running out of it and that's why they're reporting on stuff like this.

From the fine folks over there at Tampa Bay 10, in Hernando Beach, Florida, a place where there is a "beach" and an "ocean" and all of the things that come along with a "beach" and an "ocean, a 6-year old girl named Alexis was swimming in the water (yes, the article felt the need to let us know that the "swimming" occurred "in the water" of all places!) when, according to the six year old, "It felt like something was squeezing her body and pulling her under." She started screaming and some adults quickly got her out of the water "and onto a nearby boat." (OK, I would think that the shore would have been closer than the boat, but I wasn't there.) The report states that almost the girl's entire body "was covered in welts and there was what looked like a gash across her stomach." Wow. Then what?

Well, naturally, someone thought that it was the result of a jellyfish sting and they quickly sprayed a product called Sting Away all over her body. And just like the name implies, within a few minutes the sting went away! However, the physical evidence still remained. (It's an effective product, it's not a magic product.) There was a purple gash across her stomach and some of the spots around her legs and chest also turned purple. (At least it's consistent.)

So a kid gets stung by a jellyfish down yonder in Florida. Why is this news? Why is this being reported by Tampa Bay's 10 News? Because Alexis's mother is a 10 News producer! Imagine that! How convenient!

She gave the kid some liquid Benadryl before the kid went to bed. The kid didn't have a fever, she ate dinner as if she had not been mauled by a creature of the sea, and then she slept through the night as if she was over it and her mother, the news producer, was not. And the very next day, even though the physical markings of the beast of the deep, the jellyfish, were still upon her body, Alexis said she felt fine and is ready to go swimming in the pool (where there are no jellyfish). and now, back to you, MOM.

Un-believable. And yes, because my time was wasted with this ridiculous story (that should have been told at the kid's family reunion this summer instead of the entire Tampa Bay viewing audience for the News 10 news), I felt the need to waste yours with it as well. Because that's all there is. Kid gets stung by a jellyfish and ends up on the news because her Mom is a producer. Coming up next on the news, we'll go grocery shopping with the family! Please.

I did latch on to one really odd nugget of information in all of this, though. According to a paramedic’s guide book (and they're not saying which paramedic's guide book, so it could be the producer's sister or brother or husband who wrote the book, I have no idea.), it tells you what to do if you get a jellyfish sting. Well, this is news I can use. What should I do? It says, "You should first apply alcohol and then either meat tenderizer or shaving cream." Of course. Wait. What?

Meat tenderizer or shaving cream? When I'm at the beach?! Right. Swimsuit? Check. Sunglasses? Check. Towels? Check. Sunscreen? Check. Meat tenderizer? Check. Shaving Cream? Check. Wait. No. NO! No tenderizer! No shaving cream! That's because most people have figured out that if you shave before you go to the beach rather than when you are actually at the beach, that it really avoids a whole different set of issues that can arise. Who takes that stuff to the beach with them??

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