Soup, symptoms and sneezes: Seven signs you know it’s flu season at WU

| Student Life

Imagine this: Your semester’s just starting to pick up, and you’re super stressed because midterms are two weeks away. In the midst of all of that, you realize you’re sick! And concurrently, so are all of your friends! So, without further ado, here are eight telltale signs it’s flu season at Washington University.


1. You now have an actual reason for skipping class.

Instead of deciding not to go to your 9 a.m. because you just don’t want to wake up, now you want to go to class but can’t because you physically cannot get out of bed. Truly an ironic turn of events.

2. Your professors cancel class because they’re sick.

Syllabus week: Professors humble-brag about how rarely they cancel class. Peak flu season: You get an email from a different professor every day. Said email is a notification cancelling class because they’ve become ill with this plague we call the flu.

3. You have to leave during the middle of an exam to blow your nose.

Many in-class exams on campus are timed, which means they probably won’t account for the fact that you have zero working nostrils. Committed to the academic grind, you decide to try to suffer through an hour or two of just not blowing your nose. Eventually, you realize you can’t even stand the sound of your own sniffing. Subsequently, you’re left to leave your exam room, go to the restroom to blow your nose and return as soon as physically possible. This endeavor is an exorbitantly stressful thirty seconds.

4. You realize how scarce chicken noodle soup is on campus.

Normally, a Wash. U. student’s go-to comfort food is a half and half—bad for the body yet good for the soul. In the harrows of flu season, the only thing you feel comforted by is soup. Particularly, chicken noodle soup. Soon, you’ll (disappointingly) find out that there isn’t any already-cooked chicken noodle soup available in Bear’s Den. Theoretically, you could buy a can from Paws & Go or the Village, but that would require you to subsequently prepare it for yourself. Objectively, this isn’t a lofty request, but in your sick and fatigued mind that is a lot to ask. In this quest for comfort food, you finally notice how little chicken noodle soup is actually available on campus.

5. The flu becomes a campus-wide affair.

When sick, one may be apt to stay away from peers because they don’t want to infect anyone else. However, this is not a sentiment that’s common on college campuses. Here, you tell someone you have the flu and their response is usually something along the lines of, “Same!” or, “Yeah, I think I’m coming down with it too.” Essentially, nearly everyone on campus has come down with the same illness. Who got who sick? The world may never know. But one thing’s for sure: If you’ve got the flu in college, a multitude of your peers probably have it as well.

6. You don’t know if you have flu symptoms because you’re sick or because you’re stressed.

It’s common knowledge that stress can manifest itself in physical ways, and it’s also common knowledge that Wash. U. is a hard school. So, when it’s midterms and all of your friends are sick, you’re not sure if you’re fatigued and headache-y because you’re just very stressed or you’re actually coming down with the flu. Sad.

7. You take medicine!

As we all know, getting the flu is quite a pain. You have a fever and various other symptoms for days on end, and it’s just generally not a good experience. Additionally, it can be an added stressor on top of your typical college coursework. So, if you do get the flu, make sure to take medicine so you can recover faster! Your well-being is important, and once you take measures to improve it, you’ll hopefully feel healthier and happier. And if you haven’t come down with the flu yet, consider getting a flu shot! They help decrease your chances of contracting the virus, and maybe you’ll even get a nice Hello Kitty Band-Aid to cover up the injection spot. Remember guys, health is wealth.

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