Am I the only person not freaking out about this? No?
Must be a slow news week, because hoo boy, are the media outlets going crazy over this or what? It’s the flu, it is unpleasant, but so far it doesn’t seem to be any worse than any other kind of flu we have seen lately. A lot of the naysayers are ominously talking about the winter, and the Great Pandemic of 1918, but there’s a lot of months between now and then for us to be run over by buses, electrocuted, hit by errant meteors, and all sorts of other nasty things that it hardly seems worth this effort to be so worried, at least for now. It’s a flu, no better or worse than the standard flu, that you need to take precautions with that you should have been doing anyway when there is flu floating around.
The CDC website finally got around to changing their title from “swine flu” to “H1N1 flu” (though it is much harder to say and I’m sure that ship has long sailed on how it’s going to be referred to by most of us), but they aren’t taking a very strong stand on its actual origins from a pig. The American Veterinary Medical Association is taking a stronger stance on the issue: you won’t get it from eating pork. As a matter of fact, no one has actually been able to find a pig who has this version of the flu. Leave the pigs alone! Poor pigs!
And now Egypt, who hasn’t even had a confirmed case of the swine flu, is ordering the slaughter of every pig in the country? Is there no end to the pig persecution here? Note to Egypt: as far as any infectious disease specialist in the world can tell you right now, you get it from people.
Look at the horrifying statistics so far: The number of deaths in the United States…..ready?
I’m not trying to minimize things here- the potential is certainly scary- but let’s not get ahead of ourselves here either. I spent two days this week curled up in a ball from some sort of nasty GI bug that I’m sure was not swine flu, but when my dehydrated, vomiting 4 year old had to go to the ER this weekend we had to spend hours waiting behind every bloke with a cough who was sure it was.
For comparison, about 115 people a day die in the US from car crashes. So buckle your seatbelt, wash your hands, and eat some bacon. Actually, scratch that. Don’t eat bacon- not because you’ll get swine flu, but because about 1000 people die from heart attacks a day. Swine flu is about the least of my worries right now.