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Monday, December 13, 2004

Never Mind the Bollocks (II) 

When this story left off, I was clutching a referral to my local hospital. I admit that I knew this would be a possibility, but I'd rather hoped that my GP would tell me that it was nothing to be concerned about, that it would clear up by itself in a few days et cetera, et cetera. I'm starting to resent people who are simultaneously good at and efficient at their jobs, especially when that zealous efficiency leads directly to people sticking needles in my nuts. So I went to the hospital a few days later which, as any UK reader will know, is alarmingly simply due to the speed of things; no eight month wait for me, and presented myself for a battery of tests. Once again my genitals were poked and prodded and blood was taken to levels approaching exsanguination. I also learned that electropheresis gel is very cold. After yet more prodding the consultant frowned and said 'I really think we're going to need to take a sample of that. Just to make sure that there's nothing to worry about'
'Must you?'
'Yes, I'm afraid so.'

I suppose that I should be glad that he was nice about it. I went with a nurse to the place where the wicked deed would be done and, once again, I dropped my trousers. The now expected prodding was followed by the appearance of a rather sinister-looking large needle. A really slender needle to be sure, but still a needle that was to be plunged into my left testicle. Any chance of an anesthetic, I asked. Did you know that you can't sucessfully anesthetise the testes? That was the second thing I found out that day. Apparently nothing short of an epidural or a general anesthetic would do the job, which would mean booking a theatre and coming back another day and, although we're sure that there's absolutely nothing to be concerned about, it is better to get this sorted out as soon as possible. When I've gone to the dentist over the years, I've often found the experience of anethsesia injected into the gums to be far worse than needles inserted, even drilling, into the teeth themselves. Don't get me wrong, it fucking hurts, but it's a different kind of pain and at least you can eat and drink afterwards without food and beverages dribbling down the tnigly side of your face. I reasoned that this would probably be a similar kind of experience* and one needle would be preferable to two. I told myself that I'm a tough guy, that I can handle this, and steeled myself for the pain. I was half-right. While one needle undobtedly was preferable to two, the third thing I found out was that I am not a tough guy. It hurt like Hell itself, but it was over in a few seconds. The fourth thing that I learned was the true meaning of the word 'breathtaking' and then it was off to see the consultant again. This time, perhaps mindful of their recent activities, there was no prodding of my nuts. He assured me, yet again, that there was very little to get worked up about, that realistically I'm far too young to be at real risk of cancer et cetera - but better safe than sorry, eh?

Quite.

*Although I'm pretty certain that my testes neither eat nor drink.