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Getting all Swiney
Posted Nov 13, 2009 - 9:17:58

2009 H1N1 Swine Flu Comic So today I dipped back into the "stick figure comic" well, but I had the idea and I felt it was worth it. I think it accurately gets my point across.

And I know I merely am referring to it as "swine flu," but Crysta will surely correct me if I don't at some point clarify that I'm referring to "2009 H1N1 Type A" specifically. In truth though, "swine flu" is more fun to say -- and it leads to my current favorite term "getting all swiney" which I titled this post with.

I am a simple man, and I like simple jokes.

I think this first hit me on Sunday, and I was so wiped on Monday that I actually took a sick day from work. For those who don't know me that well, I never take sick days from work. In truth though, the biggest problem was just that I was exhausted. If it weren't for how tired I've been getting, I honestly wouldn't have thought this was anything else than a cold.

Now it's Friday, and while some symptoms still exists, I feel significantly better today than I did at the beginning of the week. But other than Monday, I've been coming into the office as per normal.

Why? Because I don't like taking sick days, and I don't exactly have a physically stressful job. I sit in a chair -- I lean back in it even. So, really, my staying home wouldn't do me much better, and I'd end up burning up my PTO. So I'm here...

...with Swine Flu.

Some of my coworkers have been caught up in the scare. They talk about how terrible Swine Flu is, and how dangerous it is. Guys, let me tell you, for most people 2009 H1N1 is as mild as flus go. The only reason it's of note is that it's different enough from previous H1N1 flus where we don't have a built up immunity to it.

That's it.

So if you're one of the people who has a compromised immune system or for another reason is at risk from any flu, it is a scary thing because you have no immunities to it. On the other hand, those of us with strong immune systems who aren't at risk from most flus... will pretty much have a bad cold that makes us exhausted for a few days.

Not exactly the big deal the media has scared us into believing Swine Flu is.

But I digress, it did force me to miss a No Brand Con organizational meeting (which is a rare thing) as I didn't want anyone else to get sick, but I will be better by the time DaishoCon and then Thanksgiving roll around. Those are the important things, really.

I do look forward to not having this blasted cough though. That would be fantastic.


The road to recovery exists though, and hopefully by Monday this residual stuff will go away. Until then, I will spend today secretly knowing that I'm infected with the disease that irrationally terrifies my coworkers. I am among you, I am the infected, and there is nothing you can do about it. MooHAhaahahahaHAhahahahahahahahaha!


- Traegorn

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Yeah, my whole immediate family got the swine flu about two and a half weeks back.  I gotta say for as mild as many cases are, ours was pretty bad.  Jess is much like you in that I once had to talk her out of going to class when she threw up twice before she got to the end of the hallway.  She was laid up for two days and under the weather for a few more.  Everyone had fevers pushing 105 and Geevee had to go on Tamiflu for a bit.

Due to my allergies I got a chest X-Ray to check for Pnumonia, which came up good on that account, but now they've spotted a 'mass' near my heart, yay!  (For the record no one including the radiologist or my doctor is even slightly worried about it, but there is a small chance)

The only major difference as far as severity, and the reason why people with respiratory ailments need to be concerned, is that lungs have essentially two types of cells from a flu perspective.  Most flus can only latch on to one or the other, which generally correspond to the upper or lower airways.  In the case of the Novel H1N1, it's capable of hitting both.  The result is more severe and longer duration chest congestion on average which raises the probability of complications. 

Another slightly worrying, but not distressing factor is that it has operated at a pretty high infection rate even outside of the traditional flu season.  It's worrying because that's not typical behavior for ANY flu, even the deadly ones.  Nothing I've read thus far suggests doctors and researches have any idea what, if anything, that might mean.

By the way, I'm not your typical alarmist, just noting my own anecdotal story and raising the few unique traits of this flu.  The mortality levels in absolute numbers is likely to be a bit higher due to the sheer numbers of people infected by a virus no one has immunity to, but I doubt we'll see Spanish Flu conditions.

Yeah -- it's almost impossible to make me throw up.  It happens, but since I reached adulthood it almost never does.  I can count on one hand the number of times I've thrown up in the last ten years.

That said, I had to resist throwing up on several occasions.  I think anyone else would have.
As for the two infection types I thought it was a temperature thing, not a cell type thing... but I have a degree in Political Science so I don't want to sound like a medical authority. :P
I share your feeling on taking sick days...
especially with the current job considering we don't actually get any if we get sick and call in we get written up we can be written up three times then we get  a three day suspension... something about this system is out of wack... especially considering that coming in even a minute late carries the same penalty... and why am I ranting about this is Trae's comment????
You may very well be right on that one.  I know the multiple infection points in the lung was a stated issue of concern for people with respiratory issues.  I hadn't heard about higher fevers, though the 104-105 that Jess and the kids were getting certainly bears that out.

I've been keeping an eye on it because I work for a health care company with clinics and hospitals and such.  I track the H1N1 immunizations we're giving and a couple of the other guys are data gathering on 'flu-like illness' and other issues related to it.  It's kinda hard to ignore when your day to day work life is partly centered on it. :P (I normally don't like to use emoticons, but I also don't like it when I can't convey my tone)

I know what you mean. I had to miss a day of school well because I developed a terrible fever. After like 12 hours of sleep, I felt much better and the minor things were all I had. I'm now free of the flu and and am no longer contagious. I scared a few people in Stevens Poinbt yesterday however. Judson Laiply(the Evolution of Dance Guy) made a joke about having it and say he wasn't contagious. It was all fun and I will be in that same building next weekend.
I think I had the oink already. By the way, I'm really trying to get people to start really start calling swine flu "the oink." You know, like Captain Trips.

Trae Dorn
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