April 8, 2005 [LINK]

That's gotta hurt!

Those folks who are avid outdoors enthusiasts and have had unnerving encounters with wild beasts and smaller pests can probably relate to this news item from Hong Kong: Leech worms way into hiker's nose; see msnbc.msn.com. E-e-u-u-w!

Another outbreak of the "Marburg" virus (related to ebola) has killed 174 people in Angola, causing panic; see New York Times. For background facts, see the CDC. The horrendous symptoms and high fatality rates of such tropical diseases often grabs most of our attention, but what we really need to guard against are pandemic outbreaks of influenza-type illnesses, such as avian flu. Remember Steven King's The Stand?