Home
In this issue
December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review May 6, 2009 / 12 Iyar 5769

Welcome to Air Pandemic

By Kathleen Parker

Kathleen Parker
Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | IN THE MIAMI AIRPORT — Against the advice of our vice president, I have braved the germ-infested world, forced into transit by prior commitments and surrounded by strangers who may not recently have washed their hands.


My own, of course, are scabbed from repeated scrubbing through all four lines of "Happy Birthday to You," which, my epidemiologist neighbor tells me, is how long you have to keep the soap on your hands to do any good.


At this writing, I am sequestered in a small, partitioned area of Miami International Airport. I have just downed my second vial of ImmuGo — the immune system-boosting superdose of vitamins and minerals "famous among celebrities," according to the package. I figure celebrities know what they're doing when it comes to warding off germs.


Otherwise, I'm more or less trying not to breathe.


Thus far, I have not donned a face mask, but my tote contains 10 respirator-type masks that, if worn, would so frighten people that their germs would scramble to avoid me.


Such is life on the road during "The Age of Pandemics."


That was the Wall Street Journal headline on Saturday, when I began my journey. On the same day, The Post devoted about two pages to the virus, which we should no longer call "swine flu," out of deference to our porcine friends, which were being slaughtered for no reason whatsoever. We don't get swine flu from swine, apparently.


But it's easier to get hysterical over something named for a beast best known for unhygienic behavior than the less-horrifying H1N1, the official name of the virus formerly believed to be a crisis. It may yet become scary, we are forced to admit, but for now, H1N1 appears to be no worse than regular flu. The rate of contagion is in about the same range as the rates of other strains.


Yet the stories with which all are now familiar have been screaming panic. And so we have panicked — closing schools, eschewing shopping and otherwise behaving oddly.


Ahem. Not only have I packed enough medical paraphernalia to supply a small Caribbean island, but I hold my fellow man in less than compassionate esteem. I am not alone.


In the Restroom: I notice the women on either side of me washing their hands. Their lips are moving. I recognize "Feliz cumpleaņos."


On the Plane: The woman next to me pulls out her Purex as I unwrap one of my handy instant-sanitizing wipes. We smile at each other with a mixture of understanding and embarrassment. As a mother and baby pass, the little darling turns her runny nose toward us and coughs as though possessed by snarling demon dogs.


"Aw, she's precious, isn't she?" I say to my seatmate. We roll our eyes.


Suddenly, I'm overwhelmed with a need to cough. That is because my lungs are filled with pollen, but I dare not clear my throat for fear the other passengers will turn on me. Not even the air marshal will try to save me as they toss my allergy-wracked body from the plane.


Inexplicably, I confess this urge to my seatmate. Perhaps I am hoping she will take mercy on me when the others come. She says she wants to cough, too. We are now bonded in suppressed-cough, anti-infant solidarity. We wash our hands again and laugh at ourselves. I have no idea if this woman is still alive.


My next flight is like that screen saver of flying toasters — hot, small and crowded. This is an all-adult flight to Key West, where most of the passengers are going to relax. (I am joining other journalists for a forum on the intersection of religion and public life.)


There is something palpably different in the air this time — nary a care that, as my new seatmate informs me, can't be corrected with a few margaritas. The flight attendant glides down the aisle proffering beer and wine. Out the window, the sky opens and the water turns a color that doesn't have a name yet. "Blue Heaven," perhaps.


Key West: Two days later, I have not heard a pip about illness. My mind is luxuriating in questions about the neuroscience of religious experience, the scientific evidence of G-d, the influence of Reinhold Niebuhr on Barack Obama. The flu does not exist for me.


Ignorance may not be bliss, but when it comes to H1N1, the less you know, the better it may be for you.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Kathleen Parker can be reached by clicking here.

Kathleen Parker Archives

© 2008, WPWG

Columnists

Toons

Lifestyles