Loser Virus

Taylor Foreman
2 min readMar 14, 2020

A story from the perspective of the coronavirus

Photo by @cdc

I infect pangolins. Have you heard of them? They are like little armadillos that get smuggled around China.

I cause a little respiratory illness in them, and they sometimes spread it around to one another. It’s not the most flashy life, but it gets the job done. I can feed my trillions of children, you know.

“Loser!” says the common cold.

“Well, I’m not a loser,” I say, but he’s already gone, infecting some other human. Whatever, it’s not like humans are the only thing to infect. I don’t know why cold and flu act like they are.

“Because humans actually do something on this planet, ya dork!” says the flu. He acts like he can read my mind. What a dick. “Unlike those little armadillos or whatever.”

“They’re pangolins!” I say, but he’s gone.

I wish I could make those two guys look stupid, just for once.

One day, this awful-looking guy named Ebola came to visit me.

“I heard you’re a big fucking dork and you’re looking for revenge,” he growls. He looks like sludge.

“Ok, well, I don’t know why everyone thinks that. I just wish cold and flu would stop picking on me.”

“You know what you should do, huh?” he burps.

“God, you are disgusting. What?”

“Jump to the humans. They won’t be able to stop you. See they have been fighting cold and flu for millennia. They’ve never seen you. They’d have no defense.”

“Did you do that a few years ago? They pretty much wiped you out because of all the drama you kicked up.”

“Yeah,” he coughs. “But it was worth it to show up those cold and flu dickheads. People will always remember old Ebola.”

He slinks away.

“Ew,” I say. “But, hmmm.”

One day I come really close to a human who is smuggling a pangolin that I’m in. “Fuck it,” I think, and I jump in him.

The transfer was not easy, but it worked. I made him sick.

Soon enough I spread to his family and friends. Much easier than in my pangolins.

I hear a human song “Loser” by Beck playing. “Things are going to change, I can feel it.” Yes.

I have infected thousands by the time the humans really notice. I’m all over the news. I’m all they can talk about. Cold and flu are feeling pretty dumb.

“Whatever, you’ll spread fast, but they’ll wipe you out. We’re here to stay.”

“We’ll see,” I say. I can’t wait to see what I’m capable of.

Originally published at https://www.tumblr.com on March 14, 2020.

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Taylor Foreman

Essays bridging mythic meaning and the modern world. Click here to have them appear in your inbox some Saturday mornings --> https://www.taylorforeman.com/