Monday, April 27, 2009

Pig In a Poke

By saying this, I’ll probably jinx myself and be the first person in all of Washington state to die of it, but I’m going to take that risk anyway, so here goes:

I’m not afraid of swine flu and I don’t see what all the fuss is, pandemic be damned.


I mean it’s just the fucking flu, right? We’re not talking Ebola here, are we?

Now, I don’t mean to denigrate the obvious tragedy of the hundred and fifty or so deaths in Mexico, and sure, we all ought to take reasonable precautions, like washing our hands and trying to avoid being sneezed on by strangers, but doesn’t it seem to anyone else that the level of panic is rising a little too high?

The statistics I read said that among those who contract the disease, the death rate is between one and four percent. So, even if you get sick, the chances of croaking from the illness, at least if you’re in reasonable health, are pretty slim. I’ll take my chances that there’s got to be one or two really old and infirm greybeards who are more likely to be smitten than me, right?

As a parent, I’m naturally more concerned about my child’s health, but these kids today, they live just fine on sugar and potato chips; seems to me that any self-respecting virus would rather find a host whose diet is more salubrious; and besides, if youngsters can still continue to grow up reasonably healthy on Lunchables and Fanta, then I’m not too worried about their ability to defeat some tiny little microscopic organisms.

What I am paranoid enough to fear, however, is that this is all another drummed-up crisis to keep the public’s attention off more pressing concerns: environmental degradation, economic instability, the Boston Red Sox’s 11-game winning streak.

In the meantime, I’m relying on my physician father’s old remedy for cases like this: three fingers of single-malt, taken orally as needed.


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