Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Soap and Water, Soap and Water, Soap Soap, Water Water, Soap and Water

So you're not a DJ Assault fan then? (1'52" if you can't be bothered listening to the whole song) Well, in amongst his chauvanitic rap-house he has some good advice to share. Mainly, that if you're a filthy broke-ass ho, you probably couldn't go wrong by having a nice wash once in a while. It's pretty valuable if you think about it - you could solve a lot of nasty viral problems if you just had a little scrub-a-dub every now and again. He should do public service announcements.

These announcements would come in extremely handy at the moment, what with the ongoing Swine Flu fiasco on top of what's soon to be Cough and Cold season (come on, every year we get Fresher's flu up to wazoo, no matter if you're a student or not) and now with the constantly unravelling story of a happy family trip gone horribly wrong at a place called Godstone Farm. According to reports and the beginnings of an investigation, there are now 36 people infected with the most dangerous strain of E Coli after a group of children caught the bacterial infection from petting animals at the open farm on a family trip. It's thought that the resulting number of cases has come about through contact between the people, and not from extra exposure to the farm. So, let's be different, and look at this rationally then shall we?

Everyone knows that petting zoos are dirty, no matter how new and clean the facilities look. But this is fine. Animals don't exactly lather their hands in antibacterial gel every 20 minutes and take regular baths. They are animals. They roll in mud for fun. To be fair, if you're that bothered about your kids catching something you probably don't let them out of the house that much, let alone allow them to touch animals in a real-world environment. I know that this outbreak of a possibly deadly disease shows exactly what the dangers are in situations such as this, but there also is a lot to be said for using your common sense and letting your kids play out and get dirty. They need to build up their immune systems, for one thing. Four children are now critically ill and being taken care of in an ICU, which is scary and immediately makes people want to wrap their kids up tightly in blankets and bundle them off to the relative safety of a Dettol Protected home. E Coli is a serious illness, and needs to be dealt with fast in order for the symptoms to be caught at the earliest possible moment. A mistake some parents are making, however, is asking their doctors for antibiotics “in case” their children have the disease. As the supremely professional doctor who appeared on BBC’s Breakfast this morning said, not only do antibiotics not work against this particular bacterium, you would simply know that your child was sick with it. Becoming hysterical because of this outbreak will not help matters. Over 200 people die from E Coli every year – one in every four cattle are suspected to have it. To animals, it’s like meningitis, they carry it all the time, and in most cases it never flares up. “Frankly,” said the guest celeb doctor reassuringly “it’s surprising there aren’t hundreds more cases every year!” He’s tight you know. He’s right. Do you know why there aren’t more cases of E Coli outbreaks every year? Well, it comes back to DJ Assault’s sage advice – soap and water. Simply washing your hands after handling animals or while you’re cooking can rid yourself of the unwanted transition of the virus.

Unfortunately for the owners of the petting farm, these cases are more tragic as now more and more children are coming down with the illness that can cause, amongst other nasty things, kidney failure, which can lead to death. Shutting their business down has so far been the only thing they could actively do to hold their hands up and apologise. For some, this is not good enough. “Why was it not closed sooner?” asks Liberal Democrat spokesman, Norman Lamb, wondering whether closing the farm earlier would have made a difference to the amount of people who became infected. Perhaps, but because most of the cases have come about due to contact between the patients after visiting the farm, more people would have been struck ill either way. I have nothing but sympathy for the owners of Godstone Farm – had they known about the infection they would have certainly not allowed people to visit, and it was because of advice given to them by the environmental health agency that they kept their farm open despite cases of the illness beginning to be traced back to them. Sadly, E Coli is a more common virus than people are aware of – it’s simply the nature in which it has been covered by the press that lets people believe that every few years there are a few outbreaks. 200 people dying a year from this illness may not be a lot, but until last week when this story properly broke, I was still under the impression that E Coli and Mad Cow’s Disease were left behind in the nineties. I’m fairly sure that most parents thought this too. This is not a re-emergence of a dormant disease – it’s simply a tragically high number of people being diagnosed with it in a small area.

[Picture courtesy of The Guardian. Photograph: Gareth Fuller/PA]

All that needs to be done to try to combat the deadly illnesses that still roam around our society is the simple things. Cook your food thoroughly. Keep your house clean. Wash your hands. Stop acting in the extremes when a disease rears its head; be sensible, and stock up on medicines. You’ll need them for winter anyway – don’t worry, no matter what over-hyped virus you’re choosing to ignore there’ll still be normal flu to worry about, which still kills hundreds of vulnerable people every year. Wrap up warm, kids.


Lidia said...

I'm working on a farm two days a week at the moment and those animals are FILTHY. Wuuuuvley and soooo shweet. But filthy.
A bit of soap and water does wonders!

Katie said...

Haha AMEN! WOOOO and so on.

You're working on a Farm?! Amazing!

Lidia said...

It's only voluntary but figured I'd get my arse into gear whilst looking for the elusive 'proper job'!
Shetland ponies fucking stink.

Katie said...



chestymorgan said...

Remember the Brooker article about Mollycoddled kids becoming extreme sports junkies?

Parents are fucking mad.Parenthood itself is a hysteria wins over commonsense clustermindfuck.The government is a corner cutting bunch of soapy tit wank that will poison folk in their millions with that untested filth Tamiflu(I have empirical knowledge to back this up,but thats for a later rant) and you,milady are a better writer than any female paid hack at mo bar Ms Coren
and I have never felt prouder to be a 'stinkin ass bitch' than I am right now:D Go Katie! xx

sazza said...

Hey chica,

I seen your post on another blog regarding online shopping. I too, don't like to shop much unless it is online. My faves are ebay, New Look and ASOS. However, I recently discovered that River Island suck for shopping online. (Just thought I would warn you!) Cool Blog btw.

Katie said...

Thanks for visiting and also, thanks for the heads-up!

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