Just ask anybody. Ask Jenny McCarthy. Diseases that were once totally passé have been making a slow and steady comeback lately. Not since the bubonic plague has there been such a trend in super durable afflictions with dated sounding names that just scream: “kitch!” All designed by chic and successful viruses and bacteria, these brash, retro diseases of the past, such as measles, mumps, and tuberculosis, are starting to trend, with potential to enthrall the disease-crazed U.S. population with a plague that – if we’re lucky – could so rival the market-cornering Black Death of the Middle Ages.
Influenza who? Chicken pox, huh? Get out of the way common cold! Yawn. These sicknesses have had their time to shine. Now is the moment for the classics to really get in there and wow doctors and scientists with a deadly runway show of fear and confusion. How fun! One can almost hear some 90’s White Zombie or current One Direction sound tracking this chaotic rise to stardom. These diseases are so hot right now.
In case there are those out there who have been living under a rock, under a cave, under a Paula Deen restaurant, measles splashed onto the scene recently. In New York City, a virus lover’s paradise, there have been about 20 sightings reported since February 2014. A spokesperson for the measles was recently quoted as saying: “We want to make a slow reappearance into society and not over saturate.” However, with demand comes supply. This illness is not going to remain exclusive for long, as measles tripled in numbers in 2013 alone. Considered completely a thing of the past by 2000, certain luminaries have since paved the way for a reemergence of the measles by saying “no” to vaccinations, and “yes” to distress! For example, Jenny McCarthy recently stated: “Autism, yuck! Measles, yummy!” (She was totally “e-cigging it” at the time).
In a society where everyone is always looking for the new ‘black’, measles’ popularity will only stay up if it can compete with mumps and tuberculosis – who are sure to plague the U.S. just as fiercely. Visions of the anxious, impatient for their very own swank disease, are conjured up. One can imagine old and young charging hospital waiting rooms, sneezing at each other and shaking hands without washing. Party! Hey, did someone say “fad”? Not so fast, there’s more.
Move over “Mump”-ford and Sons – the kids just want “Mumps”. Duh! Could the name be anymore adorable? Doesn’t it sound like a hip young pop band? One can almost hear teenagers screaming “Mumps! Mumps!” at a concert hall, while passionately twerking. Well, with the recent trend of mumps at Ohio State University, every 18-year-old is soon going to want a “mump” of their own. Apparently, mumps made an appearance on spring break and garnered some new fans. One of the lucky students who returned to the Ohio State University campus with some sweet “merch” said: “It was a sick time!” One can only wonder what other campuses the virus was invited to. Perhaps fans will see more of mumps in the near future.
It is such an exciting time for mumps and measles, but they have some competition with tuberculosis on the rise in some areas – ready to fully plague the U.S. “out” with its retro aura, bad boy attitude, and stylishly black mucus. Tuberculosis, or “the tube”, as many hipsters are calling it, has also seen an increase in popularity amongst New Yorkers, recently. Although its still so underground there. With only a one percent increase from 2012 to 2013, one can barely catch a glimpse of this toxic love bug. In areas of Washington there is a slightly larger amount of people starting to get in on the action, with a 13 percent increase within the same time frame. An 30-something resident of the state was quoted as saying: “TB is back? Wow. That totally beats out rumors of a Temple of the Dog reunion.” Recently, tuberculosis put out a statement saying: “We are worldwide. We have millions of supporters, but still need to remain cautious with our branding. Once we infiltrate the U.S., the way we have so many other countries, [they] just might get sick of us”.
Satire by Josh Taub