Thanks for jumping in on this Zoom meeting. As you all know from the 16 meetings it took to get to this meeting, consulting on increasing vaccine uptake in the face of disinformation, conspiracy theories and general quackery is a plum gig for us. So keep in mind this is a brainstorming session and there are no bad ideas, but also don't screw this up. We've only got so many Greek letters and so many mutations before this virus goes full zombie. Lives are at stake and so are your jobs. OK! For the sake of order, please put your suggestions in the chat.
Steve, right off the bat, hey! "What about a focused national and grassroots effort, an info-heavy campaign on the risks and rewards of vaccination. Maybe some cash incentives." Extremely 2020, Steve. Could work with the merely hesitant. But we're looking for out-of-the-box ideas for people who've made rolling the dice in a pandemic their personality.
So, I see Janice has an idea for a "Goop-style approach, folding vaccination in with rich-white-lady-quack-capitalism." I get it. "Raw water fasting, gold ingot massage and vaccines delivered by freshly harvested sea urchin needles." Is that sanitary? Tina, look into that. Obviously we can't make it free. Let's work up a price tag somewhere in the thousands or a way to make it an exclusive glamping experience in some country where they don't have enough vaccine doses.
Next we have Rick, who asks, "Why not gender the shit out of this thing?" OK, I see where you're going. "Pro athletes, but, like, not ladies, like Aaron Rogers but vaccinated — top of his game, probably a still garbage human but vaccinated. Just huge dudes getting huge needles in their huge arms and primal screaming." Can we make the needles bigger? Play up the pain? Tina, find out how big the needles come.
Taylor wants to know if we can mix the vaccines with a "male-enhancement thing, baldness treatments or just straight testosterone." Kind of a science thing but let's ask — Joe Rogan's headphones are already burning. Oh, and Janice wants to know if we can do a weight loss/vaginal rejuvenation-cocktail shot. Nice. Tina, make a note.
Josh says we're not going far enough. He writes, "Camo vehicles roll up with vaccination SWAT teams — maybe they rappel in? They hand out AK-style injection guns and they shoot the vaccine into each other in a paintball course set up like the Capitol rotunda." Josh, obviously it's insane to risk them injecting each other more than once in a day. The shots are supposed to be weeks apart. Other than that I love it. Work out the logistics and we'll come back to it.
Shannon says we're forgetting the "classic anti-vax moms." Fine. What works there? All-natural branding, baby footage, female doctors and nurses? She says, "No — discreetly trade/bribe for babysitting so they can just be left the hell alone for an hour without breastfeeding, cleaning or homeschooling anyone because Jesus H. Christ, it is exhausting in the best of times when playdates aren't canceling left and right, and now it's just you and them and it's like they never sleep at the same time and I thought leaving the TV on would make them docile but it just makes them WILDER." Wow. That ... that sounds tough. Nice one, Shannon. Shannon? Her camera's knocked over and all I can see are some Legos and crackers. Anybody live near Shannon? Should we check on her?
We'll get back to her. Who's got something for Facebook Boomers? Anyone? Tina! "How about actually putting the tracking nanobots they're freaking out about in the shot and link it to their Facebook accounts? Then they'd be fine with it." Oh, like an Apple watch but in your bloodstream, make it real but take the scare out of it. Can we harvest that data or does it go to Zuckerberg? Because this is a real marketing opportunity. Another question for the scientists but let's get on it.
And Rick is back — whaddya got, Rick? "Homeopathic holdouts might still need that grassroots approach," he says. You're not wrong; there's a lot of worry over the vaccines' ingredients, fear of chemicals and contamination. How do we get them to feel safe about putting something in their bodies? "We keep it local and distribute the vaccines to trusted sources in their communities. By which I mean the guy they buy black market weed from." I like it.
Jennifer Fumiko Cahill (she/her) is the arts and features editor at the Journal. Reach her at 442-1400, extension 320, or email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @JFumikoCahill.