Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Age of Horrible Pandemics

hello everyone! halloween is fast approaching, and although i am not generally a celebrant of halloween, i did have to sit and listen to one of my clients read franklin's halloween on monday night and it got me thinking. it is amazing how many things are going the way of the dodo nowadays simply because of the culture shift we have experienced over the last few years as a result of various widespread illnesses, the most recent being the swine flu "epidemic," which was close on the heels of the influenza a "pandemic." (i use quotations here because i am very much of the opinion that both -demics were huge media hypes used by ultra conservative right wing bible belt media barons to scare us into believing that the end of the world is upon us -not to mention the cashola that big pharmaceutical makes off of such things- but that is another blog post that im sure someone else wrote somewhere and probably did a much better job of than i would here). anyway, here are the things which have either disappeared altogether, are becoming less common, or are on their ways out:
1) bobbing for apples. after listening to franklin's halloween i was on the verge of going home and bobbing for apples by myself, i was so sad to realise i will never get to do this at a party again. bobbing has been replaced by trying to catch apples or donuts hanging from strings in the ceiling, not as fun, not as hard, not as wet. pros: at halloween parties noone's make up gets wrecked.
2) shaking hands. this is in the "on its way out" category, i think. it is still somewhat unprofessional or impolite not to shake hands in many contexts, but we all know that everyone runs to the bathroom at the first possible opportunity to get all those hand germs gone. eventually we are all going to just agree to stop doing it because it grosses us all out so much. is being replaced by friendly nodding, smiling, and sort of saluting. im telling you, the japanese were way ahead of everyone else on this one with the bowing.
3) sharing almost anything. at least our capitalistic society has made this one pretty easy to get used to.
4) unsafe sex (obviously).
5) hugging anyone other than family (and even then, im sure many of us were just looking for a way out of that one) catch my drift. im sure there are many others, but its interesting how much a little fear can shape a whole entire society. however did we make it this far in the first place?????


Callie said...

i thought this was going to be a post about the cute halloween things people don't do any more, like bob for apples or carve jack-o-lanterns without stencils, but then it turned into a germ-hater post. i love the germ-hater post, i follow the same train of thought in that regard. however, i think this would have been more effective if you made clear you were going to talk about the sanitation of society rather than letting us guess that it was your "drift".
as for the unsafe sex, i think that has more to do with income than germophobes. if people can't afford contraceptives or are dropping out of school and thus less educated about sexual consequence, they'll have unsafe sex anyway. plus, a lack of income means a lack of expensive hobbies taking up time, in addition to familial stress, so what do we do? bang. if the "ultra-conservative right-wing bible belt media barons" are in charge, well, then that only adds to our poverty issues, doesn't it?
i do agree that the "demics" are other words for money grabs. but then, so are most things.

Callie said...

oh wow, that looks awful. like a big blob of aesthetic torture. my apologies, i guess paragraphing doesn't work so well in comments.