Friday, May 1, 2009

Beware the Aporkalypse!

with thanks to the commenter Jane P.H. on Facebook who posted the words Aporkalypse Hamdemic (which made me literally LOL)

What is UP with the hysteria over the Swine/H1N1/Flavor of the Day flu "epidemic"?

Believe me, as the parent of a child with diabetes and a child with chronic stomach problems, the last thing I want to introduce into my home is influenza, of any variety. That being said, aren't we as a society going a WEE bit overboard?

One of my FB friends posted a photo of the "hand sanitizer" aisle at Target yesterday....completely empty. A co worker got a text from a friend that works at Walgreens who told her that all the face masks had been sold out on Wednesday afternoon. Ten kids showed up for school today with personal-sized bottles of Purel in their pockets. My friend Wendy over at Candy Hearts is completely overwhelmed with people calling the pediatrician's triage phone line to find out what to do.

The day started with one of my students asking if we were still going to go all the way to May 27th for school, because his friend told him that we were all going to have to go home because of the Swine Flu (or the Swan Flu, as one of the other second-graders insisted to his teacher that it was called). We had a long talk this morning about using good hygiene, coughing and sneezing into our elbows instead of our hands, and throwing our own used tissues into the trash instead of leaving them on the desk or the floor; all things that we have been talking about ALL YEAR LONG. I had to explain that yes, indeed, one of our schools has been closed because a student had the swine flu, but he actually recovered and had gone BACK to school before it was even discovered. Two more schools in our county have also been ordered closed, as have numerous schools around the nation. But we don't do that for the "regular" flu, or for strep throat, or pink eye, or any of the other nasty contagious things that sweep through schools on a regular basis. Since it seems to be turning out that the effects of H1N1/Swine are no worse than that of the typical flu, doesn't it seem like everyone needs to just take a deep breath and relax?

A deep breath of sanitized air through a surgical mask, of course.