Monday, 21 July 2014

Blood in the Toilet Bowl

On my ‘Bad Morning’ scale this ranks above ‘stubbing my toe’ and maybe a teeny bit below ‘there’s an axe-murderer in the kitchen’.

It’s the first day of 2014 and the toilet bowl looks like a slaughterhouse floor.

Like bad modern art.

Like the aforementioned axe-murderer isn’t in the kitchen. He’s inside my arsehole swinging like Babe Ruth.

I ask myself: How much did I drink last night?

The other me. The me with small horns on his head and tiny sharp shark’s teeth. He laughs. Pats my shoulder. I look into his obsidian eyes as he whispers, “You’re going to die.”

Over 42,00 British men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer this year. It’s New Year’s Day. Maybe I’m the first.

One out of every eight men in the UK will get it. So why not me? What makes me the exception?

The answer is, nothing. One thing I know about myself is that I’m not exceptional.

I tell myself it’s nothing. I’m not eating enough vegetables or drinking too much Jack Daniels. Something like that.

I’m too scared to tell my wife. If there’s one thing worse than your impending death it’s the impending death of a spouse. Someone you’ve decided to spend the rest of your life with dropping out half-way.

So don’t tell her, I say. Don’t tell her unless there’s something to worry about.

This idea is worth about as much as a chocolate fireplace or, say, a waterproof teabag.

She knows me too well. Hell, she knows if I’m lying about her bad coffee-making skills.

Me: Great coffee, pumpkin.
Lucy: You're lying.

See what I mean.

It takes about two seconds for Lucy to know something’s up.

Me: Good morning, my beautiful monkey-pie.
Lucy: What’s the matter?
Lucy: Okay, talk to me about it when you’re ready.

So I tell her everything. Honestly, I think she works for MI6 or something. They call her in when the guy who pulls fingernails out isn’t having any luck.

She’s worried, and tells me to see a doctor.

I talk to a doctor’s receptionist, and then I talk to God… sorry, I mean Google. I talk to Google.

Google tells me that Prostate Cancer is more common in black Caribbean or black Africans than white people. He's a dirty racist. He’s one of those English Defence League dickheads you see dragging their knuckles down the street, shouting abuse at everyone.

Google also says that Prostate Cancer has ‘short man syndrome’. It grows faster in taller men.

It is also a fattist.

The rest of the information I couldn’t quite understand. What can I say, I’m more than just an ugly face. I’m stupid too.

Then I’m in the doctor’s waiting room with the usual suspects. The hypochondriacs. The screaming kids.

And me staring at the coalface of Death, on the precipice of the Great Beyond thinking: What have I done with my life?

Melodramatic, but that’s how it goes.

The doctor tells me to roll into the foetal position. He lubes up. Pops a clothes peg on his nose.

The snap of latex on his wrist tells me it’s Time.

I close my eyes and try to think of Batman. Not in that way. Not sexually. Hey, I like Batman but… I mean, imagine his sex toys. Dangerous.

I lie back and tell myself Batman could do this. He’d be tough.

It’s what I always tell myself when I’ve got to do something unpleasant. It’s what I tell myself when the dentist is standing over me with a Black & Decker in his hand.

Batman could do this.

I used to think the dentist was awkward and uncomfortable. A prostate check blows that right out of the water.

The doctor feels for swelling or lumps. Checks the size of my prostate. He rummages around inside my anus and when he comes back up for air he says, “Looks fine. We’ll take a blood sample just to be safe.”


No cancer. I’m not going to die.

But for a short time I was. I mean, I am. We’re all going to die. One day.

And I could still be diagnosed with prostate cancer. One day.

It made me think about all the things I haven’t done.

I haven’t finished that novel.

I haven’t told Lucy enough times that I think she’s the most beautiful girl in the world.

I’m lucky.

Lucy thinks that shaving my head to raise money for cancer research is brave. She thinks I’m doing it because I have a good heart.

It’s not brave. It’s not even altruistic.

One day I might not be so lucky. And if you DONATE it means that there’ll be more money for research. And if there’s more research then it’ll be less stressful the next time the toilet bowl looks like a scene from Friday the 13th.

And when evil horned me leans over my shoulder whispering in my ear I can casually punch him in the face. knock his pointy teeth out.

DONATE HERE. Or if you can’t afford to, share this link.

No comments:

Post a Comment