Thursday, December 25, 2014

Behind Enemy Lines: Fighting the Flu

For a long while, we teachers were winning the war. Many of the students had already fallen in battle, but our troop held strong. Our enemy? The dreaded influenza, or as they say in Japan, “influ.”

Last Tuesday, one of the teachers felt sick so he went to the clinic. We got the news shortly after. The devastating news came that the enemy had taken him.

We sprang into action to defend our remaining soldiers, opening windows to ensure air circulation. I am stationed directly next to the infected fighter, so I repelled from my desk faster than two magnets pushed together.

Thankfully, despite my personal apprehensions regarding wearing one, I decided to overcome my awkward feelings and don a mask before school that day. To further bolster my defences, I washed my hands as if I’d developed a sudden obsessive-compulsive fear of germs.

Yet, our efforts began to seem futile after our enemy took one of our own as a hostage. He went missing, and it wasn’t until the next day that he was returned to us. He didn't fall to the flu as the first soldier had. (Is my analogy getting too convoluted? Basically, the second teacher felt ill and went to the clinic, and so he didn't come into school the next day but he got the results that it wasn't the flu). 

Anyways, on another note, I have come to not just tolerate, but passionately adore face masks. They are not only saviours keeping me from getting the dreaded influenza, but also a really nice thing to wear when you are having a “bad face day.”

We all have “bad hair days.” When I have one, I either pull my hair into a sloppy ponytail or wear a hat. But on bad face days, when I had a bit of dry skin in one spot and a huge zit on my cheek, I never knew what to do.  Now, the problem is instantly solved by my new friend, face mask.

Yes, I truly wish it would catch on in the States, but as I discovered first hand, they still induce fear and confusion outside of Japan. When I arrived in Denver still donning my face mask, a terrified looking little boy pointed at me and asked his dad, "what happened to her?" Oh man... I assured him I was fine and let out an involuntary chuckle. 

Yet, it clearly works- guess who is free of the flu? That's right, yours truly!

See? It can be sexy!

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