Wednesday, April 29, 2009


I was in the grocery store yesterday looking for some ground beef for tacos when I came upon a lady deep in the midst of a very serious conversation with the butcher behind the counter. She was not effing around.

"Sir, I suggest you check all of the pork products you stock here for this new pig flu. I think that you have a responsibility to sell pork that is safe and disease-free. PLEASE go to the CDC's website and check out their warnings and make sure that you're buying pork from safe sources."

The butcher stared at her like she had lobsters coming out of her nose. I, too, rolled my eyes. When it was clear that she was not going to get an adequate response from the butcher, she offered the CDC's URL.

"You really should check the CDC website. It's"

Lately, I've been working on not sticking my nose into things that do not involve me, so I did not share with the crazy lady that the swine flu is not a food-borne illness. But her tone with the butcher was so all-knowing, so holier-than-thou that before I knew what my mouth was doing, I found myself correcting her on the CDC's URL.

"Ummm, excuse me. It's actually"

She turned a questioning eye to me.

"Really? Figures." (whatever that means!)

As I picked up my package of 93/7 ground beef and walked away, I heard the lady continuing to bark at the butcher, this time with the correct URL, but still with the incorrect information. I sighed and continued on to the tortillas.

In case anyone wanted to know, here are the top five viruses that would truly scare me if an outbreak were to occur on US soil:

1. Ebola
2. Marburg
3. Hantavirus
4. Lassa fever
5. Yellow fever or Dengue fever

Notice swine flu isn't on that list? Yeah. Anything short of the above five, I'm not terribly worried. People...don't let the media hysteria get to you. Chiiiiiiiiillll....


LoveBadReality said...

By checking the website, she would have realized harassing the butcher was a waste of her time. Maybe she is Egyptian...

Elmer said...

E most likely got Dengue from Puerto Rico when we went, and I most likely ignored his fever, sweating, nausea -- you know...

Anyways, I'm a horrid girlfriend/wife, and it kind of sucked for him, but he got better. Same with a woman I worked with who got it (and actually had a spouse who was worried and sent her to a doctor where she was diagnosed and then put in observation).

Not to say that Dengue isn't worse than the Swine Flu, no doubt it is, but I'd guess you could safely drop it from your list without too much concern.

[evil grin]

The Enforcer said...

What concerns me about Dengue is the possibility of it turning into Dengue Shock, which is mostly fatal. Plus regular Dengue can involve the gums and bleeding of the gums, which, knowing how I freak out about teeth, puts this ahead of swine flu for me.

Meh. They all suck. It'd be pretty gnarly if any of them showed up en masse in the US.

Arvay said...

You have a list of top five viruses that frighten you?

Is it wrong that I find this darkly humorous? :)

The Enforcer said...

Arvay: I also have a list of viruses that I respect for their ability to replicate and spread themselves as much as possible before killing their host. Topping that list: AIDS.

It's a little known fact that I really enjoy studying viruses and bacteria. Microbiology was one of my fave classes at Cal.

Yeah, it's morbid and weird. But that's me...

Arvay said...

Well, you're certainly in a good field for your interest, then! :)