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1. A feigned claim of ill health used as a means of avoiding or absenting oneself from a political engagement of some kind. The senator's conspicuous absence from the debate was put down to the sudden contraction of a virus, but it is likely just a diplomatic flu so that he will not be forced to address recent allegations of tax fraud.
2. By extension, any claim of ill health used as an excuse to avoid an unpleasant or undesirable situation. Frustrated by her dead-end job, Janet contracted a diplomatic flu to takes some time off and reexamine her priorities.
See also: flu
down with (an illness)
Sick. I've been down with the flu all week and have barely gotten out of bed.
See also: down
1. n. an imaginary disease afflicting police officers who call in sick during a work stoppage or slowdown. (Journalistic. Occurs where strikes are illegal.) Another epidemic of the blue flu struck the city’s police officers early today.
2. n. a hangover. He was out late last night and has the blue flu.
brown bottle flu
n. a hangover or sickness from drinking. (Probably from beer, which is often sold in brown bottles.) Wayne had a case of the brown bottle flu and didn’t make the meeting.