(c) 2002, Mike Barkley

Excuses? For instance:

1) I'm sorry, there are diseases that are more important than yours that we're working on so be patient, we'll get around to you, after we cure all of those, and all the animal diseases too, maybe.

2) I'm sorry, there aren't enough of you with MS for us to worry about developing drugs for a cure, or even spending the time and effort thinking about it.

3) Find a cure for you? Why? Most of you are past your prime - now, if you could find a bunch of kids with MS, we could get behind finding a cure.

4) I'm sorry, gene research is more interesting than solving your petty little problems, and it might even lead to a cure for you, if we even notice it, of course.

5) What are you complaining about? At least it's not ALS.

6) What are you complaining about? Nobody ever died from MS. What? You say that's not true? Well, what do you know, must be some of that diminished cognitive power we hear rumors about. And no, we are not understating MS mortality (and thus ensuring inadequate funding for research) by labeling cause of death for all MS deaths as the opportunistic infections, etc., that cause them instead of as death by MS - at least I don't think we are - are we?

7) I'm sorry, we have to do all these tests in the fashion that is accepted by the scientific world and even though it may take many years longer for each test than you think is appropriate, it's for your own good, and no, we can't do them all at the same time, we have to do them one at a time, verry verry slowly.

8) Excuse me, but could you call back? We have to finish this paperwork. When? Uh, well, not this year, OK?

9) I'm sorry, we just haven't had the resources to examine each patient's background for the common factors that led to onset of MS, so you'll just have to accept our opinion that there is no cause.

10) Well, yes, we don't know the cause of MS but somebody else is working on that. Aren't they? They are, aren't they? Somebody? Anybody?

11) Well, yes, we did have Eighty Billion Dollars we were going to use to find a cure for MS and other long-term wasting diseases but we think Saddam Hussein is more of a threat to you than MS so we're sure you'll agree it was better that we spent it on Searching For Weapons Of Mass Destruction, right? Now, now, stop your Unpatriotic Whining.

12) I'm sorry, I thought it would be better for us to build a huge organization that has lots of meetings and touchy-feely support than one that finds a cure, and no, I don't think that means we are siphoning donations away from research.

13) Well, it's your fault you have MS and it's your fault it took us so long to diagnose you, so as long as you're not going to cooperate and stop this self-destructive behavior you can just kiss goodbye any hope of help from us.

14) You still here? Didn't my nurse tell you to go home and die? Well, scoot. And stop bothering us.

Uh-huh. Right. So I had some bumper stickers printed, here's a printable .jpg copy. Showed it to Jeanne and she said "Put this on the front window right next to the door". So I did. (Microsoft XP wants to print it less than full size or download it as a .bmp file, but if you want it full bumper-sticker size, tell it to save it to disk as a .jpg file and print it from disk.)

And here is the company that is printing them for me. Prices seem OK. You find somebody better, please let me know. (Wow! The free delivery was real fast.)
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--Mike Barkley, 161 N. Sheridan Ave. #1, Manteca, CA 95336 (H) 209/823-4817
No more excuses! - Cure Multiple Sclerosis now!