My daughter came close to being exposed to COVID. And that was too close for comfort.

Her scare happened last month, when Sommer went to her D C hair salon. The master stylist and her team specialize in natural hair. They attract customers from as far as New York and Atlanta. They also attract spies, who lurk to see how the salon operates. It’s a fancy place with fancy prices, has 1,700 clients and serves wine and charcuterie boards with olives and cheese.

The salon observes strenuous COVID protocols. There’s a contract and health release form. Upon entering, your temperature is checked, you get a new mask, wait in a separate room and can’t touch anything.

Sommer was under the dryer, when the owner announced one her staff had tested positive. The moment was fraught. Sommer fled with wet hair to get tested.

Walgreens and CVS didn’t have walk-up appointments available. Back home and searching for options, she remembered that you can get anything delivered in D C. She contacted a concierge health service.

A day-and-a-half later, a nurse came to Sommer’s condo and tested her. Relief that all was well was worth the $50 cost. Sommer asked the nurse how busy she was. Her company conducted 250 home COVID tests daily before the Delta variant. Now, they do 750 tests and work 12-hour shifts.

While Sommer enjoys peace of mind, what’s happening in the news makes me lose my mind. Because, we keep outdoing ourselves with far-fetched COVID cures.

Two months ago, I wrote about two kinds of people—those who are proud of their vaccine status, and those who aren’t. The ink was barely dry, when I called out the Einsteins who used Invectrin to treat COVID. Brainiacs pinned their hopes on a veterinary drug used to treat or prevent parasites in animals and meant for horses and cattle.

I have to wonder what grade they received in science. I don’t insult my readers, and hope you don’t believe that nonsense. I don’t know what cable news program, or shadowy part of the internet, crazy cures are birthed. But, this is what I’ve heard and seen the last few weeks.

An acquaintance and her husband, who shall remain nameless, are recovering from COVID. He was bad off for weeks, but the worst is behind him. When he gets better, he’ll get vaccinated. She is unsure, has doubts and is still “doing research.”

Nameless wants to make sure the vaccine is safe. I told her all vaccines approved by the Food and Drug Administration have been thoroughly tested and found to be safe and effective. I told her that statistics (outcomes based on math) are available.

Un-convinced, Nameless said her cousin mixes a little Invectrin in his family’s oatmeal every morning. A “little” is not a precise dose, but that’s the least troublesome part of our conversation.

Warning—The following misinformation is not for those easily offended: Rapper Nicky Manaj told her 157 million followers that her cousin’s friend got the vaccine, and his swollen body part below his waist led to infertility. The health minister of Trinidad and Tobago, where Minaj’s cousin lives, investigated the claims and found no evidence of any such case.

Then, there was a news report where a guy inhaled hydrogen peroxide from a nebulizer to prevent COVID. Nebulizers are small devices normally used to deliver asthma medicine into the lungs. Hydrogen peroxide is used in teeth whitening products and fabric stain removers. It’s also a disinfectant.

The CDC does not recommend hydrogen peroxide as a COVID treatment or cure. The American Academy of Family Physicians said inhaling hydrogen peroxide doesn’t prevent or treat COVID, and inhaling it puts the user’s health at risk. The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America had to warn that inhaling hydrogen peroxide is dangerous.

The treatment is widely promoted on social media. Your choice is, take well-regarded advice, or do something you saw on TikTok.

Bogus COVID remedies are prevalent. Volcanic ash from the eruption of the Taal Volcano in the Philippines will not cure the virus. A mix containing amphetamines, cocaine and nicotine on sale on the dark web for $300 will not vaccinate you. Drinking bleach is extremely dangerous and will not protect against COVID. Bleach is poisonous.

Sunlight won’t prevent or cure COVID. Gargling with saltwater won’t kill coronavirus. Hot baths or drinking warm water won’t cure people. UVC lamps cannot kill the virus. Ultraviolet light can cause skin irritation and damage the eyes.

Some people won’t get vaccinated and are “sticking to their guns”, whatever that means. Some religious adherents believe the vaccine represents a conspiracy of governmental control, or contains some sort of marking agent to indelibly identify those foolish enough to receive the vaccine. Some evangelicals believe the vaccine is the “mark of the beast.”

Scientists developed COVID vaccines. Take the shot, or don’t. But, please stop reaching for excuses and cures that don’t make sense.

Reluctance to take the vaccine reminds me of a quote from Isaac Asimov. The American biochemistry professor and writer, known for his works of science fiction and popular science, was prescient when he said, “The saddest aspect of life right now is that science gathers knowledge faster than society gathers wisdom.”