All right everybody...just calm down. That is of course, unless you have been rolling in the mud with your favorite pig. This swine flu, this scourge of humanity, is not yet an epidemic, or a pandemic here in the great U.S. of A.. As of Monday, there have been only 40 reported cases in the United States. More people go the way of all flesh from the no-name flu every year. According to news reports, the only deaths from this "piggy virus" have happened in Mexico, 145 to be exact. So really, why all the ruckus? Wait a minute. Yeah...thanks Twitter. Don't you people have anything better to do than scare the bejesus out of us? Tell us something personal about yourself that would make us feel the need to take a shower after reading it, not run to the emergency room because of a backache and a runny nose. On the other hand, if you think you have the swine flu you may want to, in the words of the enlightened Barney Fife, nip it in the bud by running to the nearest emergency department.
The metropolis where I live held a press conference. The mayor, himself, told us not to stampede to our doctor's office if we have the sniffles fearing that it may be swine flu. You would think with the economy the way it is, he would want us to go to the doctor for any little thing. Not only would the doctor make some quick cash, but so would the receptionist, the phlebotomist, the lab worker, and the courier who deliver these specimens for testing. Screw him. Regardless of the cause, we should all do our part in staving off more lay offs. The mayor of my fine city, incidentally, was not the only one complaining about persons concerned for their health and well being.
Most doctors have a help line where a person can ask a nurse a question without having to go into the office. Some of these nurses were interviewed on NPR this morning. They were complaining about the amount of calls received by those worried about this pork related virus. They were mainly bellyaching about the amount of calls that came in during certain times of the day. You guessed it...after local and national television news reports. That's right. These nurses were whining about an influx of calls around 7am, 12pm, 5pm, and 10pm (central standard time). I know if I were a nurse, I would want uninformed masses calling at anytime of the day rather than in the know folks calling at particular times where I could make sure there were enough staff to cover the onslaught of calls during known peak periods. But then again, I am not in a profession known for it's altruism.
Although we all know that prevention is the best medicine, I think we should all focus on that other preventative measure, an apple a day...an apple a day people.