Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Oh, What A Lovely Bore!

So much for the blizzard that had everyone running around like chickens with their heads cut off.

I went in early, so early I won't get paid for about an hour and three-quarters unless I request overtime which will be denied, and left at mid-day to avoid the chance of being marooned by the Long Island Rail Road, who now have a policy that once the snow is 10 inches deep, they don't run any trains.

This is because in the last snow storm they left a train full of people with no power, light or heat for six hours, and to their surprise were roundly vilified in the press and by anyone with breath in their bodies as a result. Rather than fix the systemic problem (no procedures to cover evacuating trains stuck in super-inclement weather or to attempt to restore "hotel power" - as heat and light are called in railroad parlance - so people don't freeze) they used the Clawhammer o' Never Again. So when a train stalls out due to a colossal rain storm, it'll be the same story because THEY HAVEN'T FIXED THE UNDERLYING PROBLEM.


All that rushing around and for what? About nine inches of slush.

Good one, weathermen. A credit to your skills with the cutting edge technology you have at your fingertips.

Update - 0600 Hours am o'clock, Thursday

I spoke too soon.

Approximately 12 inches of snow fell all over the place overnight, then most of it blew into 2- and 3-foot drifts in my driveway, trapping the Steviemobile and the MrsSteviemobile behind impenetrable walls of weatherfluff. After that, it was a simple matter to have the town's snowplows throw whatever snow had not blown into my driveway into my driveway.

You have won this round, Mr Weatherman!

A Royal Pain In The Rear End

Warning! The following blither is totally disgusting, involving what can only be described without negating all purpose in this alert as "The Toilet Regions", and I'm not referring to the bathroom when I say that. Those with a weak stomach and those who find the subject of certain parts of the body repugnant should surf over to something else for a while. You have been duly warned. It's trousers down from here on in.

I had cause over the Xmas period to visit with a colorectal specialist.

I will pause now while those who unwisely ignored the big red warning at the top of the post finish throwing up into their keyboards. All done?

The reason was that I had somehow done an injury to that opening in my body not capable of coherent speech. I figured it would heal itself in time, almost every minor tear in the skin eventually does1, but Mrs Stevie was adamant I seek proper medical attention. I argued that there was no real need, but she countered this clever line of reasoning by citing towel racks ripped out of the wall, torn linoleum and bite marks in the toilet seat, so I gave in.

The doctor was clearly an expert in wringing the maximum amount of humiliation from the situation, and had a highly trained staff. No sooner was I in the office than he had me drop my pants and underwear. The nurse held up a paper napkin around the same size as those in an average fast food restaurant, claiming it was to save me embarrassment, but she blew it by sniggering as she said it.

Once my trousers and underwear were around my ankles, I was instructed to kneel on a sort of leather and stainless steel chaise-longue of the kind often seen on exclusive members-only German bondage web sites and in the main parlour of Mistress Alexa's House of Executive Correction. It was, of course, some eight feet away, and so I was obliged to hop vigorously over to the device to the delight of the nurse, who had dropped all pretense of trying to preserve my dignity. I comforted myself with the thought that under normal circumstances, this procedure would have set me back a good $500, assuming Mistress Alexa could fit me in (she has a very crowded schedule).

I first began to appreciate how much real trouble I was in when I heard the doctor say: "Nurse, pass me the Hobbs retractor. It's that thing that looks like a bicycle pump with ridges around the end. No, the big one. And be careful. Those ridges are razor sharp. Now Mr Stevie, relax. You'll feel a small pinch."

Naturally, as soon as I heard that old "small pinch" line, the very same one Doc Rubberglove uses when he jabs me with his signature blunt hypodermics and leaves me with a dinner-plate sized bruise that fades in only 10-12 days, I tensed up tighter than Mrs Stevie's best choke hold, and the doctor was obliged to use brute force to insert whatever it was that he was holding into me.

"Just be careful doc", I whined. "I'm very tender back thereYAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRGH!"

The doctor, wise in the ways of colorectal examinations, had his nurse pinion me while he used his sheer muscle-power to insert fourteen inches of cold steel into places I had no idea I even had, while I thrashed around, screamed, begged for mercy and/or death and so forth. Before I knew it (actually, a good deal after I knew it to be honest), it was over.

"The original tear is healing. I'll give you some ointment for the four or five new ones you just got. Oh, and you should have a colonoscopy, being as how you're over fifty."

"I was thirty eight when I bent over your ruddy couch" I told him, attempting to sit on only one buttock.

And so the colonoscopy was scheduled, and was undergone last Monday.

Others in my office claimed to have had to drink gallons2 of some sort of white liquid to clean them out (the hosepipe up the jacksy is, thankfully, no longer a recommended way of cleaning out the pipes of human beings prior to sticking something the size of a drainpipe up their rear ends). I'd seen the dentist on the movie "Ghost Town" drink some sort of disgusting white glop for the same purpose, and a co-commuter told me her husband had been made to drink something akin to clotted milk in sliminess to do the job.

I, however, was told to just take four laxative tablets on Saturday, drink one 10 oz bottle of cherry-flavoured Magnesium Citrate (another laxative) around six pm Sunday, and another at six am Monday. For once I was on the winning side of things it seemed.

Not for long though

The tablet-form laxative was supposed to begin laxavating my innards in three hours, but took nine. However, after a mere 30 minutes I was as dehydrated as a vulture's crotch. Every molecule of moisture was torn from my tissues, and I couldn't drink enough water and Gatorade to offset the dehydration. Result: a vicious hangover headache, which I still have days later.

The cherry soda had much the same effect, to the point that I was moaning and clutching my head for most of Superbowl Weekend, which was a curiously apposite title from a personal perspective given that my diet for three days consisted primarily of laxatives and water. I didn't watch the game on account of I couldn't get out of the bathroom for more than about two minutes at a time. At least I had no more need to rip out and/or bite down on the fixtures, the good doctor's ointment having done its job.

On Monday I was required to drink nothing in the final four hours, and I nearly went mad from thirst and the pounding headache.

Once in the doctor’s office I was made to remove everything except my socks. For reasons I cannot elucidate, being naked is nowhere near as humiliating as being naked except for socks. Like I say, the man is a master of the art.When I folded my trousers, my cell phone fell out of the pocket and onto the floor, where it disassembled itself into it's various removable parts.

I found most of the parts quite quickly, but not the battery. I searched high and low but couldn't find the bloody thing, then spotted it lying in the space under a door marked "Staff Only", so I had to get dressed again in order that I could contravene office policy and open the door to retrieve the damn thing. It was all very tiresome and par for the course.

Once on the operating table3 I was asked when I last ate ("Three years ago" I snarled) and drank ("Four hours, twenty-seven minutes and eleven seconds" I whined) then the anesthetist stuck me with a hypo full of Valium and something with three syllables, and the headache immediately went away. I was so relieved I thanked the man and began regaling him with one of my wittiest anecdotes. After about ten seconds he let out a strangled cry and stuck another hypo in me and that was the last thing I remembered until it was all over, at which time Mrs Stevie hove into view4 and the headache came back again.

The doctor said he'd removed a couple of polyps but couldn't see anything esle wrong, then left shoo-ing the crowd of Russian webcam operators and total strangers invited in from the street before him, and I was allowed to get dressed and go home.

Apart from the headache, the only thing I've been able to take away from the whole miserable business is that the threat to "tear me a new one" now holds no force, since I am intimately familiar with what it feels like and can sneer "been there, done that" at the manager attempting to motivate me with those words.

  1. Albeit in age-related increasing timescales that can induce worry in your scribe at times
  2. Well, gallon. The container is hucking fuge
  3. Face-up; presumably some ultra humiliating pose was forcéd upon me once I was unconscious, possibly involving stirrups. Or they may have simply turned me over, but the photographic humour possibilities in that are minimal
  4. You can't have a general anesthetic without someone waiting for you so they can drive you home. State Law, I think. Same thing was true when the cracked tooth was pulled.