"You have to relax your muscles if you don't want this to hurt," she said as she finished rubbing alcohol on my skin.
I honestly thought I was relaxed, but this was my first time doing this so there was probably some background anxiety that I wasn't consciously aware of.
So I took a deep breath and tried to relax while I waited for the little prick of the hypodermic needle injecting dead flu virus proteins into my shoulder.
I don't get the flu. My theory is that I've got a super immunity due to a near-fatal (at least it felt near-fatal at the time) pneumonia I contracted years ago.
Still, with a kid in school and a new baby in the house, I bowed to the pressure of my (admittedly much smarter than me) Supermodel Wife to get the seasonal flu inoculation this year.
The nurse who gave me the shot -- I think her name was Becky or Ashley or something like that -- was sure to point out that "this is the seasonal flu shot, not the shot for the H1N1 flu."
According to Tiffany, the CDC identified back in April/May the flu strains that it thought would be a problem. At the time, they didn't think Swine Flu would be a problem.
"If you want a Swine Flu shot, you'll have to come back in a few weeks when we get the vaccines in," she said.
Now this may be my first flu shot, but I know a scam when I smell one. I'm not sayin' that the Swine H1N1 ain't a real thing. I just find it interesting the way things are working out.
I mean, look at it this way. You know how Apple is always working on the next new release of the operating system and they always give it an animal name (usually feline in nature). You had Mac OSX Cheetah, then Puma, then Jaguar all the way up to Leopard...
The point is, it's just good marketing to give something a name that people can latch on to.
I'm pretty sure that's what's been going on with these annual flu vaccinations. They started out a few years ago with the "Bird Flu" (later called "Avian Flu") that was killing people in Asia. Nobody was scared of it when it was just called "H5N1." But when the media got it's talons on "Bird Flu" -- well, there's a hook you can build some hysteria around.
This year it's the Swine Flu -- very catchy. Gets the media excited. Gets the citizenry in an uproar. Gets some much needed demand for the pharmaceutical industry right in the middle of a consumer recession.
Ah, now we're getting somewhere. It's How to Survive a Recession 101: Create A Demand For A Product For Which You're The Only Provider.
Anyway... I'm not really sure where I was going with this.
My arm is kind of sore.
tagged: swine flu, vaccine, Avian Flu, Mac OSX, Panther, conspiracy theory, shot