The information technology industry is reeling after an outbreak of the Star Wars Flu, named for the record-setting movie that was recently released, coincidentally, in the same week that the debilitating epidemic erupted. Strangely, the illness, which has caused significant declines in output at organizations’ IT departments across the country, has not had nearly as much of an effect on sales, marketing, human resources and other business units, medical experts reported.
Many observers said they haven’t seen an outbreak among IT workers like this since the “Lord of the Rings: Return of the King Whooping Cough” of late 2003. Much like that affliction, the Star Wars Flu causes distinct, inexplicable symptoms in its victims—mostly grown men—such as dressing up in costumes that resemble the attire of beloved film characters.
“It’s just the strangest thing—I hadn’t been sick in years, and then BAM!” said Nick Edmonds, a network auditor for BizTekTools, who had sequestered himself inside a pup tent adorned with Ewoks outside of a movie theater, presumably to prevent the spread of the disease to family members, friends and co-workers. “Hey, you’re not going to use my name in this article, are you?”
Some industry analysts estimated that the Star Wars Flu may cause overall revenue losses of more than $500 million to U.S. businesses due to the sick days IT employees have to take in order to recover. The accounts offered by many organizational leaders support this claim. “Without my team, I’m stuck like Han Solo in carbonite,” said Paul Shervington, senior manager of IT infrastructure at Cube Pharmaceuticals Inc., on the movie’s opening day. “This setback will make rolling out our newest project as challenging as, say, holding off Imperial forces on the ice world Hoth. Actually, (cough) I think I might be coming down with it, too (cough, cough).”
Although the harmful impact of this disease has started to wane, it can still pack a punch for those who contract it. A couple of known treatments for the Star Wars Flu include a steady girlfriend and a rigorous physical exercise regimen.
For more information on the Star Wars Flu (really), go here (http://www.cioinsight.com/article2/0,1397,1817928,00.asp) or here (http://www.upi.com/view.cfm?StoryID=14052002-110108-9069r).