'A' is for 'chutzpuh,' lipstick on Saint Paul's pig, the right to videotape police, Kluwe on Kluwe, and the day on Planet Creepy.
The flu season is hard upon us -- tragically, in some cases -- and we can stand by for feverish news coverage of the epidemic.
It's important to get a flu shot, the experts say, but why isn't there more mention of the one thing that can stop the spread of flu in its tracks: Staying home?
This is America, of course, and we're all about showing the bosses that we can "suck it up" and work when we're sick; that's how you get ahead in the workplace, the theory goes.
But by doing so, we're infecting everyone else in the office, who will get sick and, maybe, miss work, and make things tougher on managers to get the workload covered.
School children get awards for perfect attendance, but maybe there should be awards for kids whose parents are responsible enough to keep them home when sick.
It's an endless cycle that invariably makes the flu season much worse than it needs to be.
Why do we do it? It's a cultural thing.
On Twitter this morning I raised the issue and found several fascinating perspectives.
But, do people who come to work sick really get ahead? How does it work in your office?
@mylittlebloggie But I've definitely gone to work sick, too. One's easily made to feel guilty for wanting to stay or go home.— Jodi Trotta (@pinswithfury) January 9, 2013
I recommend sneezing in the face of people who would make you feel guilty for staying home when sick.
@mylittlebloggie Exactly. I blame PTO. People go in sick to avoid losing later vacation/sick days.— Jon Tevlin (@Jontevlin) January 9, 2013
PTO is one of the worst concepts ever to hit the American workplace. Under it, you are given additional money in your paycheck each week which you can use later to either (a) cash in to stay home when sick or (b) cash in to take vacation. Feeling a little stuffy today? Why should you spend vacation time? The goal of this policy is clear: To get people to not take sick days.
Get a flu shot, wash your hands regularly, and remind your boss today to change the culture of the American workplace.
And if that doesn't work, use this new Facebook app, and resort to some public shaming.
If you don't have the flu, it'll scan your Facebook timeline to identify the people you know who might give you the flu, most of whom will probably be work colleagues and spouses.
Oh, by the way, this memo came out in my company today:
What should you do if you get sick?
You should stay home and avoid contact with other people as much as possible to keep from spreading your illness to others.(20 Comments)
It's been nine months since comedian Tig Notaro's life seemingly began going to hell, culminating with a diagnosis that she got cancer on the day she was to make a stand-up performance in Los Angeles, which has become legendary and which I wrote about here.
A bit of an update. Reader Brian Hanf spotted this Yahoo video as part of a sponsored series on the secrets of success.
"I don't have a complaint in the world," she said.
At the very end of that piece I wrote in October, I made a very small mention of a colleague:
This is a topic -- reacting to the worst news you can get -- that had already gotten my attention this week anyway. A colleague of ours at MPR revealed that her husband's cancer has metastasized into his brain and they had decided he would transition to hospice.
She relayed on her Caring Bridge site how he reacted when the doctor gave them the horrible news.
"Okey-dokey," he said.
He died. And last week, my colleague returned to work, stopped by my cubicle, and gave me a present: a T-shirt.
Coincidence is an odd thing.(2 Comments)
Brian Burke, the former Edina resident, was fired today as head of the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Burke was a polarizing figure in Toronto, mostly because his teams weren't very good.
But in firing Burke, the Maple Leafs also got rid of an important voice for gay athletes.(0 Comments)
Perhaps you were as shocked as I was (and a few readers, if you go by my e-mail) over this ad from the anti-smoking group, Clearway Minnesota that is appearing on area TV stations.
Check out the first kid. That's a kid who knows how to smoke.
What's the deal with having kids smoke in a TV ad to discourage kids from smoking?
"None of the kids were smoking," Mike Sheldon, the senior communication manager for Clearway Minnesota, told me this afternoon. "We used fog machines for some of the scenes and it's computer generated."
The reaction to the ad, presumably, is just what the anti-smoking group wanted.
"We want policymakers to know, youth smoking is still a problem," Sheldon said. About 77,000 kids smoke, he says, a number which he acknowledges is trending down but which is "unacceptably high."
"It's easy to say that because statewide smoking is done, this is something we can cross off the list," he said.
The ad is one of three the group is currently airing as part of its Still A Problem campaign.(4 Comments)
Spending cuts and taxes at the Capitol, the flu in Minnesota, the ferry accident in New York, pictures of the alleged Aurora shooter, and picking your wedding date based on your zip code.
Here's your vaccine against ignorance: The daily news discussion with Mary Lucia on the Current.(1 Comments)