The Flu Stops Here

That is, I intend to make it through the entire 2009-2010 flu season without contracting influenza. Yesterday I took advantage of a free H1N1 vaccination program at BGSU to cover that strain, and today I received the seasonal flu shot at a local Kroger's location.

Yes, only in America can you get a flu shot while stopping to get a gallon of milk and a loaf of bread, although I did have to wait 45 minutes for a pharmacist to have a free moment.

There are a few reasons why I have been more vigilant about receiving flu shots the last few years. The first is that I have been simply too busy to afford missing even a few days of work due to a temporarily debilitating strain of the flu. In addition, since my wife has been warned by her physician to avoid the flu shots due to some autoimmune issues, I figure it would be better if only one of us was knocked out by the flu at once.

Last year we both got nailed by a wicked case of norovirus
within about 24 hours of each other, and let's just say that two spouses being simultaneously sick is a difficult situation - there is no one well enough to play caretaker.

I think my overall track record in the years I received flu shots has been successful. In the past decade I have probably received the flu shot seven times, and I recall only getting a severe flu case about two or three times in that span. By "severe" I mean one of those lay-you-out-dead-on-the-bed-for-48-hours flus, not the kind where you can still somewhat function, albeit slowly and miserably.

Of course, since much of my teaching is with online classes these days, I suppose I would be better served by worrying about virtual viruses instead of airborne ones, but that is another story.