Sal Governale’s long list of misunderstood words grew by one on Monday when the staffer went on the air to share his frustrations over how too few people are “mitigating” during the coronavirus pandemic.
“My big concern is that Donald Trump, you know, he’s always concerned about opening the economy, opening the economy, setting dates, but we’re not mitigating. We’re not staying contained,” Sal said.
Considering the staffer’s past confusion involving words like “retraction,” “prevalent,” “statistician,” and even “Ireland,” Howard and co-host Robin Quivers wondered precisely what Sal thought “mitigation” meant.
“Based on what I’m seeing on the news and everything else, I would imagine mitigating means staying away from people, staying together, staying enclosed, being aware,” he told them, later adding, “That means stop going out. Wear your masks. Stay quarantined. Stay at home. I watched Dr. [Deborah] Birx and she’s talking about mitigation every five seconds … If mitigation is important, I would assume that mitigation means you have to quarantine yourself and stay safe.”
“Are your kids mitigating?” Howard wondered.
“I have a feeling this is wrong, but, um, yes, my children are in mitigation,” Sal replied. “They’re mitigating in the house. From what I’m gathering, they’re practicing mitigation.”
“Are your parents mitigating?” Robin asked.
“Yeah, somewhat. We’re all mitigating,” he insisted.
After some back and forth, Sal finally caught on that he might not be using the word correctly. “Why are you using the word if you don’t know what it means?” Howard asked.
“I do know what it means. Well, I thought I knew—apparently, the way you guys are acting, I have to Google it and figure it out,” Sal replied.
Sal’s continual search for meaning isn’t limited to Googling words he doesn’t understand, either. He also told Howard he’s opening himself up to signs from the universe while taking routine strolls through his neighborhood.
“When I walk—I know you’re going to beat me up for this—I kind of like look for spiritual signs,” Sal told Howard, explaining his treks are quite literally littered with everything from sunglasses and dice to KFC boxes and a “used, slimy” condom.
“I looked at the dice and said, ‘Maybe it’s a sign from God,’” he continued, saying he believed it meant life wouldn’t “crap out” on him. Likewise, he felt the sunglasses indicated the sun would soon come out, metaphorically, and the coronavirus pandemic might soon be over.
Howard wondered what the other items meant. “When you saw the condom did you say to yourself, ‘God is trying to say my father should’ve worn a condom so I wouldn’t have been conceived?’” he joked.
“No, I think it said, ‘You’re fucked,’” Sal laughed, adding, “The condom was so disgusting and repulsive that I just moved on.”
At one point, Sal’s wife Christine Governale appeared on camera and told Howard she could hardly believe the things her husband was saying on the air. “I’m listening myself thinking what the fuck is going on?” she said. “What kind of moron is talking?”
“Is he practicing good mitigation?” Howard asked her.
“Yes, he is. Too much. I need a break from his mitigation,” she laughed.
“Are you with Sal when he’s walking around observing the ground?” Robin wondered.
“Uh, no,” she responded, adding that she tunes her husband out when he returns from his walk with newfangled insights about life.
“I’m just trying to find the good in things, that’s all,” Sal concluded. “I look at the ground and I say, ‘How can I interpret this in a positive way?’”