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What's the Sickest City?

By Christopher Schonberger

Living in a city has many perils, not the least of which is the hordes of sniffling, coughing, disgusting sick people walking around like plague-riddled zombies ready to infect you with their presence. But now, thanks to Sick City, you know when it's safe to venture out and when you risk being felled by the bleary-eyed masses. As the Weather.com "Pollen Count" function is to seasonal allergy sufferers, Sick City is to hypochondriacs.

Or so it would seem.

While Weather.com's reports are based (at least in theory) on science, Sick City's evidence comes from one of life's least scientifically rigorous sources of information: social media. In short, it just pulls any Twitter update that includes red-flag keywords—e.g., chicken pox, sore throat, feeling ill—and then extrapolates from that the number of people who are sick in the city.

Needless to say, this information is pretty much useless. Not everyone who is sick uses Twitter, and not everyone who is sick on Twitter chooses to announces their sickness with standard descriptions of what's ailing them.

Thus, instead of using this website to figure out which city has the sickest people, I'd suggest using it to find out who complains the most (New York!), or who listens to the most Lil Wayne songs. Some Weezy tweets that might create confusion would include:

Muthafu**a I’m ill, not sick / And I’m OK, but my watch sick...

Flow sick, so sick, need a doc, yes / A creature, monster, like the Loch Ness

Promethazine in two cups, I'm screwed up / And you ain't sh*t if you ain't never been screwed up / Flow so sick make you wanna throw your food up.

Rock on, they see the jewels is so sick, I like flu spit and flu cough / Take it off and you lost, the tough talk get tooled off

I'm so sick I go to the hospital / When I don't get fixed I get nicked by the brain surgeon

This is the year I must excel / Fans sending in cards saying you must get well.

And the list goes on...

Sick City [via Thrillist]

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