Thursday, April 30, 2009

The Swine Flu?


Despite a bit of joking around on the subject, I do not think that I have the flu, and I certainly do not think that I have the Swine Flu. I have a case of--my get up and go has got up and went. This is a semi-permanent condition, probably caused by diet, and I need to change that and some other unpleasant things in my life. But while I am spending more time in bed and don't feel like doing much, I do get up and garden when weather permits, and occasionally I get up and do something else. I am not currently just lay down and die sick. I'm very rarely that sick.

As far as other people having the flu, I'm not sure how seriously I should take this whole thing just yet.

A few days ago one of the towns about an hour away decided to close the schools for a few days while they did some serious cleaning. Apparently one of their students has the Swine Flu, so they decided to close the schools and clean everything just in case.

Then this little kid in Houston died. But the child in Houston caught the flu in Mexico. It's not like everyone in Houston has the Swine Flu. And then I don't know how long the little kid was in Mexico, and if the kid might have lived if taken to a U.S. hospital sooner.

But then last night they decided to shut down all of the Fort Worth public school system until May 11th. Shutting down big schools like that...well...maybe it is starting to sound a little bit scary.

This is one of those days when I wish my dad was still around to talk to.

I don't remember the Swine Flu in the seventies. I don't know if they closed schools and such then. Anyway, the subject of the Swine Flu came up one day, and he talked about it as if it was a cruel joke. And the way he told it, the president ordered everyone to go and get vaccinated. I don't always get a flu shot, just sometimes it seems like a good idea. My parents always got flu shots in the nineties and after that, but in the seventies and the eighties they didn't always get one, just sometimes when they had a feeling about it. Other times they didn't bother with it. Other times they decided that taking three screaming kids to get shots was not a great idea. And despite the medical evidence that you can't get the flu from the flu shot, some people are just very sensitive to the shots and get sick that day or the day after. So if you get a flu shot on Friday your weekend is spoiled, and if you get a flu shot during the week you risk missing work or school (or at least feeling bad enough to want to miss work or school). And then after all of that you might still get the flu, cause maybe you were exposed to it already and you didn't get the shot soon enough to do it's job. Or maybe you were exposed to some other strain that the shot doesn't work against.

Maybe you were even exposed to the flu while you were standing in line to get your flu shot.

So I don't remember the Swine Flu in the seventies, but to hear my dad talk about it everyone was ordered to get a shot, people had to take their screaming kids to get a shot that their parents didn't think that they needed, people were sick that day and the day after, people ended up getting some other form of the flu anyway, and people were all scared for no reason. Nothing happened. Nobody got the Swine Flu.

I don't remember this stuff. I don't know how much of this was exaggeration. I don't know if people were actually ordered to get vaccinated. And I don't know if literally no one got the Swine Flu.

All of this put me in the mood to watch old episodes of Survivors on YouTube. But it seems that most of it has been removed.

Oh, well. Back to Baby Spice the Dinosaur Slayer.


Ananda girl said...

I only vaguely recall the swine flu scare in the seventies. I have always gotten whatever vaccines are open to me. I'm a minor league germaphobe.

They are going nuts on our news here. I live across the river from the state of Washington where they now have six cases of swine flu. Schools are being closed... but not mine.

I've been considering wearing a mask. Children are not good at the cover your mouth thing and they spread illness like wildfire. I already wash my hands to the point of being chapped when stuff like this happens. Sanitizers sting when you have chapped hands, but I'll use them too. I've already banned the students from touching my computer. They like to check the books in and out.

Well, I was feeling fairly safe up here so far from Mexico... guess that's over now. I'm not going to go too nuts, just be extra careful.

dmarks said...

I thought I had overheard on the news that Fort Worth had some major school closings. I figured I might Google it later, but now I don't have to.

We have one or two reported cases in Michigan.

I remember the swine-flu scare in the 1970s. Gerald Ford has generally been laughed at for over-reacting, like he is laughed about for his WIN buttons. But I tend to think that if you are going to have a national health system to put out big alerts like this, every once in a while you are going to have a big warning and big precaution for something that turns out to be not much of a threat at all.

This should really kick Mexico tourism for a while, and it was already reeling anyway. Hector seems to be giving updates a lot on his blog about how it looks inside Mexico.

laughingattheslut said...

I'm not sure if you should wear a mask, but if you decide to go that far you should also wear surgical gloves.

I still have a couple of boxes of those left from an art project. If you lived here I'd loan you some.

Ananda girl said...

Laughing-- I have some... always, for icky situations. Thanks for the suggestion and the thought of generosity. I know a lady, a nurse actually, who cannot go anywhere without wearing surgical gloves. I don't want to let myself get that bad.

bulletholes said...

I remember it in a kinda stoned sorta way....back then I stayed so high that the bubonic plague coulda have been running rampant, with carts going by my window yelling 'Bring out your dead" and I'd have just laughed and brought out my Grateful Dead LP's.