Friday, April 22, 2011

Mr. Lava Reports - Measles March on Eurovision

Mr. Lava has volunteered to send dispatches from Eurovision Song Contest 2011 in my stead. Here is his second report:

Autism, in combination with rampant paranoia and under-informed parenting, has given Europe, and probably soon the entire world, a bad case of the measles. Writes Huffington Post:

"To prevent measles outbreaks, officials need to vaccinate about 90 percent of the population. But vaccination rates across Europe have been patchy in recent years and have never fully recovered from a discredited 1998 British study linking the vaccine for measles, mumps and rubella to autism. Parents abandoned the vaccine in droves and vaccination rates for parts of the U.K. dropped to about 50 percent."

Ground zero seems to be France, which has already seen almost as many measles cases in 2011 as it did in all of 2010. Paris (which, due to its location, its financial power, and its considerable cultural contributions to the world, is often referred to as "The Crossroads of Europe") has begun executing the infected (and, as a precautionary measure, the non-infected) living in that city's suburbs.

Now measles has its sights set on Eurovision. It would be a dolorous competition indeed if we had to endure the sight of the beautiful Mika Newton's porcelain features speckled with contagion. Fortunately, the heavily-fortified Fortuna Düsseldorf arena, where the contest will be held in May, is serving as a Decameron-style hideaway for the uninfected. Your correspondent, sadly, is not one of the privileged few who will get to pass the next few weeks swapping tales with Moldova's Zdob şi Zdub. So I and thousands of others are pawing mindlessly at the arena gates, moaning piteously in the desperate hope that we will be allowed entry into the safety zone.

If only I were "Popular," like Sweden's Eric Saade, who recently explained that "the word 'popular' is just an expression for wanting to be the best." This is so true; popularity and high achievement often go hand-in-hand. One need only look at the facts: Charles Darwin developed the grand unifying theory of biology called "evolution," and over 150 years later he remains popular in America's Deep South.

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