This morning a tweet from Denton singer-songwriter Doug Burr showed up on my Twitter home page. In it he used the hashtag #WestNileSurvivor. I called him up to see if he had, in fact, survived the West Nile Virus, and he confirmed that for about a week he suffered from flu-like symptoms.
"Sure, flu-like symptoms," I say. "But, was there a point in which you saw a light at the end of a tunnel and heard Jesus calling you home?
"I had a low grade fever," he said. "About 100.3. I would take Ibuprofen and I just kept coming into work."
Coming into work? Ibuprofen? How does a West Nile sufferer do anything other than lay on their death bed contemplating their choices in life that led them to that backyard barbecue where the mosquito zombie attacked?
I ask a follow up question: "Were you worried that you would never play music again?"
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"The funny thing about it is I didn't know until I was well," says Burr. "I got a call from [the doctor] and it came back positive for West Nile. I was already better. I was mowing the yard when I got the call."
Burr wasn't sure if he got bit in Denton, where he lives, or on a trip a few weeks prior to the symptoms to Tehuacana, Texas, where he recorded his album Shawl. But he finds it curious that the third person on his cul-de-sac was just diagnosed with the virus that has us all shaking in our pants.
He isn't too worried for his neighbors, either, he says. They all seem healthy and able to fight if off the same way he had. And, like he said when the symptoms were at their worst:
"OK, this isn't that big a deal."