Archive for April 27th, 2009

Swine Flu

Pandemics. One more nagging thing to get all worked up over.

I was in Hanoi in 2003 when the SARS outbreak hit. We were staying at the very same hotel where the international team of physicians tracking the outbreak were staying. Several of our team members were sick with one thing or another. I had spent the afternoon writing then returned to my room. Someone saw me and said, “You don’t look so well.”  (actually not an unusual state of being for me).  “You look like you might be running a fever,” she said. (In truth it was more likely a hot flash but I didn’t know that then).

I went straight to my room to nap. One of the trip’s supervisors showed up to tell me she’d reported my symptoms to the hotel clerk who then called for one of the international doctors.


All that for a hot flash.

The slightly built Frenchman wore a face mask. He had the hands of a piano player, elongated fingers and skin whiter than a baby’s bottom. He did all the usual probing and prodding and declared me dehydrated but otherwise fine.

But then I got to thinking, if he’s the doctor treating all these SARS patients in Asia wouldn’t I be at more risk for having been treated by him?

Now America’s newest white meat — pork — is going to have a bad name.

I have a feeling all those barbecue places are going to see a decline in business. Is anyone tracking the shares of Smithfield?

I’ve been out-of-town over the weekend, doing the mother-of-the-bride-to-be thing in Bend. I had no idea there was a Swine Flu outbreak. The hives I got came on as soon as the gal quoted me a price of $1,200 for a wedding cake.

A wedding cake, mind you.

We’re talking Betty Crocker here. Who knew that owning a Suzy Homemaker Oven would prove to be so lucrative?

I am obviously in the wrong business. I’ve always been in  the wrong business, usually at the wrong time.

Do you know the correct salve to such hives?

Just say No.

No way. No how. I don’t care if you decorate the cake with Belgian lace, I am not about to fork over enough money to feed half of Alabama rice and beans for a week for a wedding cake. Konnie doesn’t even like cake.

I’m thinking about substituting it with a heap of pulled pork. We could put Gerber Daisies on the top.  I’m sure come September everybody will have forgotten the swine flu. There will be a whole new pandemic to worry about.

But then again, what do I know?

Ask the cake lady. She’s the expert.

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