Apparently, the social event of the year is a concept called the Swine Flu Party. (H1N1 Flu Party doesn't seem to have the same cache, does it?)
There was a discussion thread this morning on a local mom's site that I occasionally frequent about this notion where parents are deliberating exposing their healthy kids to sickos with the H1N1 virus. Because nobody seems to know of anyone who has hosted or attended such a soiree, this all may very well be a hoax (and I truly hope it is, because the whole idea of this is nauseating). It seems that it is based on the quaint idea of Chicken Pox Parties, where you would expose kids to those with chicken pox.
Hoax or not, for the purposes of a blog post, play along with me and pretend that this is for real, OK?
If I have this straight, you get a bunch of snot-nosed, sniffling, wiping noses into sleeves, sneezing, coughing, feverish young'uns together. Add in your own perfectly healthy children. Pray that your healthy kid walks out of the party with a 103 fever (or, at the very least, comes down with such a day or so later.) Then, your child gets H1N1 and you get the inconvenience of having a sick kid over with. Who knows, maybe you'll even get a goody bag of swine flu too!
I can't make this stuff up, people. This is disconcerting on so many levels. For starters, everyone is sick so there are plenty of places that one can go and pick up the flu without having to suffer through yet another social function. The weather (at least in this part of the world) tends to be wacky during the fall months and people always get sick when that happens. So, the likelihood that you or your kids are going to get sick this winter? Pretty damn good.
But back to the Swine Flu Party. To me, this speaks to a more troubling mindset, one that we're seeing all too frequently in today's society. I am sure that there are people among us who would actually considering doing this, whether it is going to a Swine Flu Party or hosting one themselves. (C'mon, you know someone with this mentality. You know you do.) It's the same mentality that thinks it's OK to concoct a hoax that your 6 year old is floating up, up, and away in a Mylar balloon.
Exposing your kid to any illness deliberately and purposefully in hopes that they get sick and for the purposes of your own needs is abusive, plain and simple.
And there's nothing festive about that.
* B.Y.O.B. (bring your own boogers)