Fresher’s Flu Is Real.

A man sick in bed with a thermometer in his mouth

You hear about it even before you start university. You think everyone’s making it up. You don’t think it’ll happen to you. But then it does.

Freakin’ Fresher’s Flu.


I too was like you; naïve enough to believe the seasonal sickness wouldn’t come for me. But I’ve gotten it. Every. Damn. Year.  It’s sore throats, headaches, and a general feeling of un-wellness that isn’t, I imagine, unlike dying. But just because it exists doesn’t mean people won’t use it as an excuse, trust me. Usually in time for presentations. Especially in time for presentations.

Here’s the type of people I see getting Fresher’s Flu every time. If you can spot ’em, you can avoid ’em. I’m just thinking about you.

The Troopers: 

If this person is in your class, buddy up with them, but not too much. They’ll be flued up to their eyeballs and they’ll still come to every lecture, even if they’re sitting there with their head in their hands, wheezing while they give genuinely thoughtful answers, looking like they need a bit of defibrillation. At first glance they’re easy to confuse with students who’re hungover – but the hungover ones generally sit at the back.


The Drama Queens:

This person’s not easy to spot because you won’t see them at all. They’ll barely be in class anyway, but as soon as they hear the words ‘Fresher’s Flu,’ all of a sudden they have seven strains of it and it’s much worse than anyone else has had. Their Snapchat will be full of crumpled tissues and perfectly applied ‘I’m sick’ faces one minute, and cheeky pints in Spoons the next. You only need to worry about these guys if they come near you. Or if they want to group with you.


The Carriers: 

These are people whose partners are sick (but they’re not sick) or the people who have been to every night out at LRV, and every event in town during Welcome Week, and you’ve seen them sniffle maybe once but that was it. If they comment that everyone they know is flued up but they’re not, you’re in the danger zone. They’ll definitely show up to the group presentation you’re doing on feminist themes in Carmilla, but you might not.


I’ve seen a lecturer get sick with Fresher’s Flu maybe one time. And trust me, they know when you’re faking it. All you can do is make sure you don’t share drinks with any germies, keep your hands clean, and if you do get sick, make sure you keep your fluids up and, so you know, the SU shop sells cold and flu medication. They’ve got you covered.

Unlike your presentation partners.

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About Siân 28 Articles
I'm Siân, I'm 27, and I'm a third year Creative Writing student. I'd like to be a full-time writer when I grow up, but a career in editing or teaching would do in the meantime.

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