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Man Flu is a crippling and debilitating disorder indiscriminately striking down male members of the human species without warning. The illness is often referred to pejoratively by female members of the species who are in fact immune from the illness as man flu is now known to exclusively attack the XY chromosome carrier. If Man Flu is kind enough not to kill the infected party it will definitely leave him weak, sick, hurting everywhere and in dire need of TLC.
Medical professionals now also widely recognise that self diagnosis by the sufferer is the best means of identification as the symptoms of Man Flu are far more severe than the simple common cold which predominantly targets the XX chromosome holders (i.e. females). This goes some way to explain the cynicism some women display towards their male counterparts.
FACT VS FICTION
Man Flu is simply a cold, the symptoms of which are greatly exaggerated by men.
FALSE – Man Flu is a serious and potentially life threatening illness, and will no doubt soon be on the Health and Safety Executive’s list of Reportable Diseases. Man Flu is a distinct disease in its own right, and should not be misdiagnosed as a mere common cold.
Women can catch Man Flu
FALSE – Man Flu does not attack humans with the XX chromosome, only those with the XY chromosome. This genetic mutation effectively immunises females against Man Flu. This may account for the reason that women widely believe that Man Flu is actually just the common cold, but with a bit of extra drama thrown in for good measure.
The best way to deal with Man Flu is to just ‘get on with it’
FALSE – Extensive research has proven that the only way to combat the crippling effects of Man Flu is complete withdrawal to the sofa and uninterrupted mollycoddling by the girlfriend / wife.
Men have a slower recovery rate from Man Flu than women do from the common cold
TRUE – The effects of Man Flu can linger for days and days, compared with just a few hours for the common cold. If the man is not permitted the correct period of convalescence following an attack of Man Flu he can be plunged back into a critical condition (see The Woman’s Role as Carer).
Man Flu is just a way for men to get sympathy / time off work / time in front of the telly
FALSE – Man Flu is a bona-fide and debilitating illness, would men make a meal of that sort of thing?
The pain and suffering of Man Flu is similar to that of child birth
TRUE – Though at least with child birth it’s all done and dusted in a few hours, but Man Flu can last for weeks…
The best cure for Man Flu is a cocktail of Night Nurse, Day Nurse, chicken noodle soup and whiskey.
FALSE – There is no cure for Man Flu. Once infected the afflicted can only hope that the gods roll the dice in favour of life rather than slow, lingering death.
While suffering from Man Flu, men would like nothing more than to go to work and try to forget about their affliction.
TRUE – However, men recognise the huge risk of spreading Man Flu to other men. Indeed, a single cough in the wrong direction could hold enough Man Flu germs to wipe out a small rainforest tribe.
The Woman’s Role as Carer
If you find yourself in the position of primary carer for your boyfriend or husband then DO NOT PANIC. As explained elsewhere on this site you are completely immune from Man Flu.
Your beloved will shortly become completely dependant on you, requiring you to tend to his every need. Do not shun any request, don’t forget that the affliction that he’s suffering from is hundreds of times worse than the simple affliction which you know and understand as the common cold.
There are three distinct stages to Man Flu and it’s important you know your responsibilities :
Stage 1 – I think I’m coming down with a cold. Don’t forget, even medical experts recommend self diagnosis, and ALL men are experts at recognising the early stages. Here you will be expected to sympathise, any flippant comments now such as , “Oh I expect it’s Man Flu is it?”, will cause immediate deterioration. Preferred responses will be along the lines of, “There there, can I get you some chicken noodle soup and put your favourite Police! Camera! Action! DVD on?”. This stage can last from one to three days.
Stage 2 – It’s not a cold, it’s the ‘flu. Your beloved will barely be able to lift his fingers to work the remote control by now. There will be dramatic displays of coughing and chest holding. He will present a red and sniffly nose, and a phantom fever. Do not mention <begin sarcasm˃ Man ‘Flu <end sarcasm˃. Instead continue to serve comfort food and provide him with a selection of men’s magazines (such as FHM or Maxim) to take his mind off the illness ravaging his poor body. You may also be required to gently dab his forehead with a lightly dampened sponge or massage his feet. This life threatening stage may last from three to five days.
Stage 3 – It’s not completely gone, but I think it’s going. By now your beloved will be physically exhausted. He will have spent the previous seven days teetering on the brink of death only to have pulled through. However, he will start to feel less ‘achy all over’, and begin to move short distances away from the sofa. Hang in there with your pampering, you’re nearly done. This stage can typically last from six to ten days. Please be aware that any sarcastic references to Man Flu at this stage can render the hapless victim straight back to the life threatening stage 2. He should be allowed a suitable period of convalescence (the length to be suggested by him) prior to being tasked with household tasks.
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