Icosian Reflections

…a tendency to systematize and a keen sense

that we live in a broken world.


It's Jonas Salk's 100th birthday (as commemorated in Google's daily doodle, above, which, ironically enough, enjoys more patent protection than does the polio vaccine it commemorates), which makes for a fine reminder that you should get your annual flu shot! By doing so, you're:

  1. much less likely to get the flu
  2. decreasing potential anxiety as a result of experiencing flu-like symptoms, which, annoyingly, are highly similar to the early symptoms of Ebola every disease ever.
  3. protecting your friends, family, the elderly, babies, and the immunosuppressed through herd immunity.

Comic: "And the evil Mr Vaccine played his flute of never getting polio or smallpox ever again, luring the children straight to the town of Notice How Nobody Gets Polio Or Smallpox Anymore"

On this last point (herd immunity), Vax is a neat online game where you try to shut down epidemics by vaccinating and quarantining people; my top scores are 94%/81%/76% in turn-based mode and 94%/91%/84% in real-time mode. It's addicting, but mercifully not that long, so you won't lose days of your life to it.

Anyway. Happy birthday, Dr. Salk. May the world always have scientists so visionary and daring. May your legacy as the man who killed a disease be less rare in the future, when we've likewise struck malaria, worms, and so many more preventable diseases from the list of things that kill us, but until then, thanks for getting us this far.

Apologies to Leah Libresco of Unqeually Yoked, whose images and links I shamelessly stole for my post.