Hold MeCommentary • rich • senior citizens • ISSUE 35•03 • Jan 27, 1999 By T. Herman Zweibel, Publisher Emeritus (photo circa 1911) Many of you have written The Onion to specifically inquire about the state of my health. Actually, no-one has. You heart-less bastards! May you die head-first in a pyroclastic lava flow! Do you have any idea of the kinds of maladies and afflictions from which I suffer every day? I will now name for you but a small fraction of the diseases that wrack my ancient frame: Pneumonia. Consumption. Leprosy. Worms. Gout. Jaundice. Typhus. Distended scalp. Gangrene. Scurvy. Dropsy. Quinsy. Distemper. Plague. Night sweats. Corns. Rickets. Brackets. Hardening of the arteries. Elephantiasis of the knees. Rheumatism. Catarrh. Dyspepsia. Doldrums. Croup. Piles. Lavender hysteria. Deposits. Torpid liver. Spathic jaw. Soreness of the parts. The Crimean itch. Earwigs. Miner's glans. Scrofula. Shingles. Hoof and mouth disease. Lymphatic chalking. As you can see, I am a veritable receptacle of pestilence, and it gets worse with each passing year. As if you care! I get nary a letter or telegram or a visit from any-one of you! I can no longer maintain my aloof, dignified facade. Please, please come and hold me. I am a sick, feeble, lonely old man in need of comfort. Hold me! Hold me as a mother holds her first-born. I beg of you, cradle my poor, blue-veined, egg-shell-fragile head in your young, healthy, supple arms. Gently caress my sore, boil-scarred limbs. Scatter daisy-petals upon my death-bed, and anoint my gout-inflamed feet with myrrh! But above all else, just hold me! Please! Please!