So, I finally get over tooth pain from an abscess, Andrea comes home, we prepare for a local getaway weekend for our anniversary (27 years on March 29th, I’ll thank you!) and I suffer a flair up of a recurrent affliction. Grrr.
How to say this? Uh, epididymitis is not something I’d wish on my worst enemy. Okay, sure I would if I had a worst enemy…and the enemy was a “he”. First time I incurred the wrath of all the fertility gods combined was in 1989, and I’m not sure what triggered it this time but I went from “okay” Thursday afternoon to “groan” later that evening to “yes, dear, you’re right… we need to go to the ER… I’m not arguing any more”.
Andrea and I went to the opening of the Plano Art Association‘s 125 Show (a juried, annual event open to all artists who live within 125 miles of Plano, TX) on Thursday and then off to pick up some things for the weekend. By the time 07:30 p.m. rolled around, I was in a wee bit o’ discomforting state. And, still denying the trend, my thought was to call my doctor in the morning, pick up a prescription and be on our way to Fort Worth. Yeah. Right. That simple…not. While packing, Andrea saw the repeating grimaces and knowing my normal pain threshold to be high, told me in no uncertain terms that we were going to the ER. Remember? 27 years, right? She got no objections from me. So just before midnight on anniversary eve, our personal paramedic Colin drove us in his new (well, new to him 2006) Subaru WRX to Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Rockwall. Not the most comfortable ride for a man whose nethers need not have been jostled, but I endured.
On the way over, Andrea and Colin were discussing what to say if we got pulled over… If a male cop, just tell him my condition and he’d probably run escort. If a female, Andrea would feign labor. In the back seat, I only heard part of the conversation over the exhaust roar and was thinking, my luck it would be a female doc. Which it was. Modesty be damned when in pain, right? She confirmed the diagnosis – during which I stood up in the stirrups and grabbed her bottom lip – and, after I retrieved my fingernails from the ceiling, she ordered up an ultrasound to make sure nothing was twisted down there. But first…they gave me morphine! And I had no idea how welcome it would be.
I must say, I did like what morphine did for me at the time. I did NOT like the after effects. But when the ultrasound tech was taking a “family picture”, I hardly felt a thing. And under the influence, while waiting to be wheeled down to the ultrasound lab, I whipped up an on-the-spot limerick which my loving wife (of 27 years) posted on her Facebook page…with accompanying picture. This was 15 minutes into the morphine effect… notice the drooping eyelids? For those not as fortunate to be friends with Andrea on Facebook, here is my masterpiece:
I wasn’t out walking the halls,
For the pain had me climbing the walls.
If you ask where we are,
We’re in the ER,
Hoping the doc fixes my balls.
Three hours after admission, we were on our way back home by way of whatever pharmacy was open at that time to dispense my antibiotics. With Andrea driving. Very fast. Putting Colin’s car through its paces. Counting on the residual morphine to keep me quiet. Groan.
So, our anniversary weekend had to be put off. And the associated social activities that normally might go with such festivities? Also put off. Look up epididymis, if I haven’t conveyed the gravity of the condition.
Childbirth vs. testicular pain
In an morbidly coincidental convergence, Andrea’s brother had pontificated earlier in the week on the difference between getting kicked in the crotch and giving birth. Aside from the plain fact that the pains are mutually exclusive and can only be compared theoretically, any woman will tell you that childbirth is worse. I had heard Mick’s conclusion years ago in a similar observation, but it is still funny… A woman will likely at some point in the future think it nice “to have another baby”. Andrea says nature instills an amnesia during childbirth that allows women to forget the pain and want to go through it again. No man, except for the most masochistic… let me repeat, no man …ever thinks to himself, “Gosh, I sure could do with another kick…”
Now, google the argument and you’ll see all manner of humor, ire, references to the final Friends episode. But let me tell you, one thing not part of any of the comparisons is epididymitis. I’ve been kicked and that does fade (part of the childbirth argument is how long it lasts). Come to think of it, I’ve been kicked numerous times by the product of those childbirths. Anyway, I’m on day three of the treatment and I can tell you that you’ll still be pulling my fingernails out of the ceiling if I’m examined too harshly. But, enough about me…
This weekend, Dylan and Drew were off with some friends and Brandon, who graciously offered to chaperone, at Brony-Fest in Lewisville. It’s a phenomenon I don’t pretend to understand, but then I don’t need to. One plus of home-educating our kids is that they are free to enjoy what they want without negative peer reaction. And enjoy it they do
Drew’s the one on the far right, dressed as Vinyl Scratch. He spent a lot of time on his costume…with Momma’s help! Unfortunately, he missed the costume contest. Maybe next time.
They both came home exhausted and Drew has laryngitis, so I guess it was a hit. They had to share a queen sized bed, and I understand that Drew conquered most of the territory, but Dylan snagged all the covers, so they called it a draw. Apparently, Dylan woke up at one point and tried to get Drew to move…Drew said, “Dylan…you’re big.” So saith the occupying body. That’s one of the reasons we get them their own room when we travel.
Art and artifacts
On our abbreviated anniversary, Andrea and I wandered through a few antique shops. (I hobbled…see above.) Andrea found a beautiful little shoe form that someone had carefully put Milagros all over. She’s been on an internet tear to find a source so she can use them on an epic piece she’s developing. Seems a trip to Mexico might be in order soon…
She also found the cool little (replica…darn) cannon on the right for my desk. I like it. It’ll come in handy on Sept 19th. Sooner if I can figure out how to overcome the “replica” bit.
Today she’s finishing up a piece for the Kistch and Flow an Art Show, presented by ArtHash, that she’s titled “The Way I See It.”
You can read more about it here.
I didn’t get to another Arthur Clarke this past week, but I did read Pierre Boulle’s Planet of the Apes while convalescing this weekend. I remember finding a paperback of Monkey Planet (the original title) in our small public library when I was 12 or so, and though I thought I hadn’t read it, I do now recall the ending. Good, but the 1968 movie was better. There are a handful of films that actually improve on the novels and that was one. Oh yeah, … in.my.opinion.
I also wrapped up Tom Peters’s blog collection in his The Little Big Things: 163 Ways to Pursue EXCELLENCE. Good stuff, if all over the map and in his staccato ADD style. Of course, new books to read came out of reading 163 Ways – the first being Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness by Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein. Looking forward to it.
Not a book per se, but long enough for one, I’ve about half through reading Scott Trent’s (author of Right that I promised feedback on) PhD dissertation. Reading it had adjusted my perception on what a dissertation might require…if I pursued a doctoral degree in engineering, I’d be mired in mounds of experimental data, though I’m sure the research is quite extensive. I’m more interested in management/leadership theory now, anyway, as my reading lists probably shows. In addition to Nudge, I want to read The Back of the Napkin and The Innovator’s Dilemma as further research into design thinking.
Also not a book, but I’ll include it here, I started on The Great Courses lecture series Your Deceptive Mind: A Scientific Guide to Critical Thinking Skills. Loving it so far…ties in to the recent reading/listening on memory, observation and other cognitive concepts.Great Courses always has great stuff.