Swine flu review: good show, but wouldn’t buy the album
The strange thing about having swine flu is that it is more like meeting a pop culture icon than being told you’re sick.
After being examined by two doctors yesterday (the intern called for backup) I was told that I had the best accessory in the Winter 2009 collection – the H1N1 virus.
This terminology was obviously preferred by doctors who refuse to engage in the more tabloid pig or swine flu. It also would have sounded alarmist when paired with their sage advice which was basically “go back to bed and you’ll be right, young bloke like yourself” etc.
To be perfectly honest there was a certain thrill I got from being told all this time my annoying cough (much I’m sure to my co-workers delight) was indeed swine flu.
Almost like randomly having a drink with Lady Ga Ga and Russel Crowe in a club you lied your way into, I was hanging with the swine: “so anyway it turns out I was there with Swine Flu too, didn’t even recognise him at the time”.
Having swine flu gives your illness a cache that regular old chest infections and winter viruses can’t hope to muster.
Of course I did feel like complete rubbish all last week, was bed-ridden over the weekend and had a cough that should be recorded and used in a play about some 18th Century Parisian students dying of TB in an apartment together, but telling people this without the pre-fix of “swine” in your flu just sounds boring and annoying.
“What you don’t want to hear what I’ve been coughing up? Oh I forgot to mention it’s swine phlegm now. Yeah I’m okay, should be around for a couple more days, they say the thing has just has to run its course. But you know they say someone as young and fit and handsome as me . . . sorry, well they didn’t quite say handsome”.
Ringing the boss and telling him you’re sick goes from a guilt ridden task that could otherwise be interpreted as mid-August sickie to open invitation to never turn up for work again:
“What? Swine flu? Jesus boy, don’t come in till November and we’ll try half days at that.”
When swine flu first arrived amidst a paparazzi scrum in Australia I wrote a piece claiming that it was all a bit of hype: “But what if it was elf flu?”
Having now contracted the illness, as karma would inevitably have it, I am mildly impressed but feel somewhat vindicated in my initial assessment.
The severity of swine flu, at least in my case, is like going to a Lady Ga Ga concert for free, having a good night but being sure as hell I wouldn’t have forked out the $110 for tickets myself.
Deffinitely swine flu leaves you in bed for several days and with the aforementioned cough, but otherwise the gig ends early and the bar was shut (they wouldn’t give me tamiflu or antibiotics).
The Brisbane strain flu I had a couple of years ago really blew it out of the water, much better venue, went on for weeks and it was around before flu pandemics were what pretty much everyone was into.
Swine flu does give you the chance to look at kids’ television, which I basically still love more than anything.
ABC’s Behind the News gave seriously the best summary of the Government’s emissions trading scheme I have ever heard. Penny Wong and every broadsheet should be offering this guy a job tomorrow.
The French are still into making good claymation shows with little blue and yellow men, which is very admirable and French of them.
There’s probably an entire governmental department that devotes itself to subsidising and encouraging this important and “unique French” art form over the evils of American digital animation.
Finally, I am still really annoyed by Babar the king elephant cartoon.
It would be fine to engage in suspended disbelief like most animal cartoons but it’s the contradictions that always got me in Babar as a kid, and still do.
Why is it is that Babar and the elephants learnt to wear clothes and none of the other animals do? If they’re all sitting down speaking English together why have the technological advances of palace building and ability to drive only touched the elephants?
And why did that creepy woman who adopted Babar feel the need to dress a baby elephant and send him to a French school with young humans where there were obviously no other animals, letalone elephants, enrolled?
Swine flu has allowed me to ponder these questions again and I am thankful for it.
But even though I have come into contact with the world of the over hyped celebrity tour it would be good if swine flu left the country.
We need to return to our day jobs and swine flu just leaves you with a feeling of a hangover and no big night out with Lady Ga Ga to show for it.
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