I had salmonella poisoning but I didn't know it. The explosive effects of this condition had left me sore, dehydrated and waiting to see my annoyingly upbeat doctor. With clenched and scalded buttocks I sat in a waiting room the colour of sadness, I dared not look at anyone - three days of violent diarrhoea doesn't fill you with much social confidence. For a while I sat on my hands, an attempt at keeping my poor abused ring-piece off the hard plastic chair, then, bored, I sent my wife a text
"At the docs - wish me luck!"
Eventually my name was called and I stood up. Immediately everyone looked at me and tried to guess what I was in for. The receptionist looked smug because she knew. Smug and disgusted. I took a deep breath and, mustering as much dignity as is possible when it looks like you've just been fucked by the Harlem Globetrotters, I waddled across the waiting room.
I immediately described to the GP my symptoms, he smiled but didn't shake my hand. A few minutes later he passed across a small tube and asked me to "step outside" so I could fill it. I must've looked slightly shocked.
"I'm afraid we'll have to take a stool sample!" he beamed.
I held up the tiny see-through container.
"In this?" I said.
"Yes!" he chortled.
I looked at the doctor but it was clear he was serious. The diameter and length of the tube were not best suited for the collection of normal stools, let alone unstoppable splattering pints of hot liquid shit.
"You want me to fill this?" I asked
"If you can!" the doctor smiled
"If I can?" I thought to myself "If I could "aim" I could fill this a hundred times over in a tenth of a second".
I said "Can I have a glove please"
"Of course!" he chuckled, "Take two!"
The toilet was adjacent to the waiting room so I hid the tube in the palm of my hand and, trying to appear normal, I waddled back past the waiting area and slipped inside. The cubicle was empty and I was acutely aware that I could hear the patients waiting outside. I could hear the rustle of magazines and the coughs. I could hear the receptionist. I could hear everything.
I needed to be careful.
Sighing, I took down my trousers and went to sit down. Then stopped.
There was a wasp in the toilet.
It looked dead, but to be certain I flushed again. But after the water had settled, there it was, still floating on the water. As wasps go, it was quite big and I stared at it nervously for a good 30 seconds before, satisfied it must be dead, I lowered myself over it. I'm sure it's not just me, but I have a real problem with wasps near my scrotum.
Actually, scratch that - any animal, not just wasps. Put me in trousers and I will happily fight most creatures, but with exposed testicles I feel far too vulnerable for any form of combat. I think I would rather fight blind folded and fully clothed against two chimps and an angry beaver than naked against a small goat or a ferret.
It's a major flaw in men - it's our Achilles ballbag.
By the way, if you're reading this and don't have a ballbag of your own then relax, you probably have an equivalent female weakspot. A weakspot that animals, particularly in a fight, could exploit. By which I mean sting, bite, squeeze or claw. Actually maybe I'm being kind, you girls don't have anything that "dangles". It's the danglies that make you properly vulnerable.
Anyway, I lowered myself down on to the seat, hearing the coughs and sniffles outside the door. I couldn't help but think that people were listening. You may call me paranoid but if it were me outside then I'd be listening. Minutes passed and nothing happened. I just couldn't let go. It's very difficult to let nature take it's course when you have a big wasp near your arsehole.
I thought of the smiling doctor waiting in the adjacent room. I looked around - but there was no reading material. Even if there had been it would've been tough to read, don't forget I was doing this one handed, my other hand, double gloved, was poised to collect 'the sample'. Time passed.
Sitting there in a trance, pondering the horrors of being stung on the balls by a massive wasp I suddenly heard a loud buzzing noise. THE WASP WAS ALIVE!
"JESUS SHIT!" I leapt up.
I looked down and the wasp still lay there, drowned in the toilet and definitely not buzzing or trying to sting my ballbag.
BZZZZZZZ the noise went again, which is when I remembered that my mobile was on vibrate and in the pocket of the jeans around my ankles.
It had gone very quiet outside the door. The fact that I had just bellowed "Jesus Shit" in a toilet next to a silent waiting room hit me.
It also occurred to me that the doctor had probably heard me shout this after five minutes of trying to fill his crap tube.
I reached into my jeans and saw the text from my wife, it said
"Good luck honey!"