Dear Friends and Family,

I hope you are all doing well and staying safe. Most of you have probably heard by now that I was recently hospitalized, so I just wanted to take some time to reassure you that my hospitalization has nothing to do with the coronavirus pandemic. I am only here to recover from my bookie’s hired goon breaking into my house and shooting me three times over a massive gambling debt that I have no way of paying off.

Rest assured that I was following all of the latest guidelines and recommendations from the CDC and WHO prior to my injuries. I was washing my hands frequently; I was not touching my face; I was only placing bets while out of my mind on cocaine; and I was not leaving my house, both to avoid getting infected with COVID-19 and to avoid running into Joey “Iron Fists” Cachatolli. I am happy to report that these precautionary measures seem to have worked in terms of not getting the coronavirus, although they did prove to be somewhat less effective in terms of avoiding Joey. I knew that busted lock on my kitchen window would come back to haunt me someday.

One of the many silver linings here is that, because Joey shot me from a safe distance instead of using his legendary iron fists, even if he had coronavirus, my risk of catching it from him should be extremely low. He also wore gloves and a face mask when breaking in, and while I assume that was mainly to avoid leaving fingerprints and prevent any potential witnesses from recognizing him, it had the added benefit of keeping me safer. From the coronavirus, I mean. Not from Joey himself.

I am feeling alright, all things considered, and the doctors say I should be discharged very soon. I’m not sure if this is because my recovery is going well or because of all this talk I keep hearing from them about how they don’t have nearly enough ER beds for the coming wave of coronavirus patients and need to start flipping them “like waiters at the Times Square Olive Garden,” but I’m just going to assume it’s because my recovery is going well.

In the meantime, the doctors have assured me that I am perfectly healthy apart from my gunshot wounds, my weight, my drinking habit, my smoking habit, and the mysterious growing spot on my right calf that I am refusing to get looked at. I’m also planning to become addicted to whatever painkiller they prescribe to me upon my release, just FYI.

I’m not sure when I’ll get to see everyone in person again given all these new restrictions on gatherings, but I’m already looking forward to having another one of our big family get-togethers once this passes where my sisters make passive-aggressive comments about my gambling addiction and dad eventually drinks enough to confront me about it directly and Cousin Frank eggs me on with this hot tip he says he has about the Broncos and we all end up crying and miserable by the end of the night.

While we’re on the subject, any new hot tips, Frank? I have a really good feeling about my next wager, whatever it ends up being.

Anyway, the main takeaway here is that yes, I’m in the hospital, but no, I don’t have the coronavirus, so everything is fine. At least, I think I don’t have the coronavirus. I asked the nurses if I could get a test while I was here, but they just laughed and said they ran out of those, like, three weeks ago.

Hope to talk to you all again soon!

Uncle Dan

P.S. Please send money. We all know Joey will come back.