Friday, October 23, 2009

615 The Flu Shot

615 The Flu Shot
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The first flu shot in more than 30 years. Doctor Caso said back then that one cannot catch the flu from the flu shot, then looked at his patient's records and saw the previous year's shot and the two weeks of flu that followed it starting two days later. "Hmmm," said the Kindly ole doc, "Maybe you shouldn't get one." No flu any year since.

Doc was fond of that "hmmmm" thing. He was the calmest man on the planet. You could come in there with your foot detached and in a bag of ice and he'd say "hmmm, that doesn't look too good, let's see if we can't put you back together," which he would. Then there was "hmmmm, your blood pressure's a little high..." which might have meant "a little high" or off the charts. But the calmest man on the planet wouldn't bat an eye. That is, until he was asked about his own probable but closeted hypertension, to which he'd answer "oh, I never take MY pressure!"

So here it is 2009 and there's a full blown panic about H1N1 "Swine" flu. There are live virus inhalers, inert virus injections and the usual dead virus shots for the "seasonal" flu. What to do. Dr. Caso is pushing 80 and retired years ago. He'd take a call and a question for advice, but that would be an imposition.

So, let's just get the shot and get it over with. Beside, there's pressure from the New Doc. She wants her patients vaccinated. The New Doc maybe half Dr. Caso's age, the age of your correspondent's children. She is maybe 4'11" and can't weigh more than, say, 90 pounds. Easy to ignore? Think again. She is pleasant and cheerful. She is knowledgeable and at minimum, borderline brilliant. She is stubborn.

And she is accompanied by a nurse who has a hypodermic in her hand. She doesn't wait for a response, she just jabs.

You want to know why China has survived for 5,000 years of bad dynasties and war lords and provincial fighting and invasions and corruption and communist rule and the infusion of American Capitalism? It's because of people like New Doc, large and small who know what they want -- or don't want -- and are determined to win. This was only a tiny example. A great nation survived this way.

Achoo.


Shrapnel:

--Realty mavens are forecasting a new housing downturn, which should come as a surprise. The market's been glutted with first-time buyers taking advantage of a big tax break that goes away soon. Cash for Clunkers led the way in mini bubbles and housing almost has to follow.

--Why isn't Kerik rubbing off on Giuliani? The ex police and corrections commissioner is heading for jail, but the ex mayor who appointed him and got him within an inch of being Homeland Security Director is Teflon on this one. At least for now.

--Arianna Huffington on the Leno show: You want to call attention to the plight of the 1.5 million homeless children in America? Put 'em in a huge balloon so they get some media attention and hand wringing a la balloon boy, and maybe also get some of them roofs.

I'm Wes Richards. My opinions are my own, but you're welcome to them.®
©WJR 2009



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