Should you want to avoid some Thanksgiving awkwardness with the family, well, just go out into the general public and touch a bunch of stuff. Flu cases are up in Texas, a bit earlier than normal, according to the CDC, which means there's still hope for a valid excuse for skipping out on the turkey talk next week.
According to the most recent weekly survey data from the CDC, Texas is one of the states seeing a significant uptick in flu cases. About 8.8 percent of the folks heading to the doctor with flu-like symptoms are testing positive for the virus, which is quite a bit higher than other regions are reporting.
But not to worry, y'all. While you may feel like you're knocking on death's door, chances are you're not. This year's prominent strains have so far been crummy but not deadly.
The CDC is reporting four strains so far for the 2014 flu season -- two type A and two type B -- and luckily, the strains are nowhere near as severe as they have been in years past. Most of the flu cases being reported are H3N2, a much milder strain than what has been identified as causing the deadly flu epidemics in recent years.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
But don't worry. If you're kicking yourself for leaving the state for Thanksgiving and you really, really want to catch the flu, well, there are plenty of other states and regions reporting an uptick as well, according to the CDC.
Local influenza activity was also reported by Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and 12 other states: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Oregon and South Carolina.
So if you're looking to spend your Thanksgiving with a box of DayQuil and some chicken soup in front of the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, well, that's where you should probably head.
And for the rest of us (who just drink away the family holidays like normal people), it's probably time to get a flu shot. Looks like Texas is going to be full of folks bellyachin' about the flu for a while, and that vaccine is just about the only way to avoid being one of them.