H1N1 partiers play chicken with the swine
There are only so many â80s-themed parties one can attend before American Apparel runs out of gold lamĂ© spandex pants and shoulder pads stop being ironically funny and start being a regrettable fashion statement.
Itâs only natural that students start branching out to new theme party ideas, but itâs not long before everyone and their mother has been to a golf bros and tennis hos party, a white trash party, a mustache party, a highlighter party and a Nickelodeon party. And you know your party is mainstream if your mother has the same âDoug Funny as Quailmanâ costume as you.
More original ideas are necessarily sought, but there are only so many different themes that you can put âbros and hosâ in front of before they start becoming esoteric. Generally, the themes âPenguins and flaming-os,â âPuritan Bros and Quaker Hos,â âMoby Dicks and Mrs. Dalloway Chicksâ and âMagician Bros and Assistant Hosâ tested poorly in focus groups.
But fear not; it is unlikely that the next Facebook event invite you receive will be for a party themed âSloppy Joes and Barbeque Hos,â though it would be great to finally put that bikini made out of hamburger patties to use.
It turns out that the latest cool party to throw is a swine flu party.
At first, this idea seems to make little sense because there is nothing less conducive to drinking than surgical masks (unless you are drinking Natural Light).
After a second glance, though, this idea makes even less sense.
Swine flu parties are a rumored and perhaps mythical phenomena, which exist concretely only in the realms of Internet discussion boards.
At a swine flu party, one guest has the H1N1 virus and the rest of the guests show up to expose themselves to the virus, and to enjoy beverages and cocktail weenies in the meantime. The reasoning behind this seemingly wanton recklessness is that the exposure to the not-necessarily deadly H1N1 virus will provide immunity for a later and potentially more dangerous strain of the virus.
According to The New York Times, this âvigilante vaccinationâ isnât completely devoid of sense. Itâs not unheard of for parents to purposely expose their children to chicken pox so they can avoid it later in life. Similarly, when the 1918 flu pandemic swept the world, some papers reported that patients exposed to the earliest strain of the virus were less likely to die later on.
Still, the consensus of the Center for Disease Control is that a swine flu party is âcertainly … something that we would highly recommend not happen.â Or as a flu specialist interviewed in The Times put it, âtotally nuts.â
The swine flu virus is still too unknown to make willful exposure to the virus a wise idea. It is the medical equivalent of marrying your high school sweetheart who looks like a yeti because youâre not sure who else is out there; but, sometimes itâs better to face uncertainty than to marry a yeti.
So if you receive an invitation for a swine flu party, your best bet is to put away your âslutty scrubsâ and platformed surgical booties and consider going to that âRakes and Hoesâ party â American Apparel just started carrying gardening clogs!
Laura Reeve is a senior majoring in public relations. Her column, âFolk Laur,â runs every other Wednesday. For more âFolk Laur,â check out Lauraâs blog at dailytrojan.com.