Dying/broken/forgiven.... now I begin

Born: 17-06-56....gemini.... monkey
re-born: 3-09-80
born again\found: 14-04-08
other notable dates: 10-03-68; 03-09-87; 23-03-96;
1-05-98; 31-01-02; 5-04-04

Interests: movement, stressed/transgressive embodiment, lived experience (body\space\time\relation)
expression ( word, dance, text, image, story, music, poetics)
learning, yielding......

Hopes for the blog:
offer up the wild intersectedness of lived experience and engage others in creative, expressive, perhaps irreverant, hopefully playful, and respectful encounters....
enact kindness
create moments of pause for disclosure, discovery, stillness

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Fear Factor

Last Friday, I had a flashback to that television show..... Fear Factor. A show that places willing participants (usually in teams of two)  in humiliating, terrifying and often gross situations. The team that manages to get through the terror and grossness of a given episode then gets to move on to even more imaginative ways to engage in terror and grossness. My flashback was to an episode where the "challenge" was to swallow bull testicles, boiled, I think. It was an effective discriminator.
How is it that I was drawn, implausibly, back to this experience of deep and meaningful revulsion? Perhaps a mention of my context at the time will explain it....
I am at a med lab, getting ready for an upper G.I. series. I 've had one of these before a few years back and the lingering memory of how long it took me to swallow the disgusting stuff that is required so that the techs can take  great pictures of my insides still ... lingers. Back then,  I took me a good half hour to get it all down, with much urging and gagging and puking.... and then three hours to track it through the GI tract and the lab was behind on all the procedures thanks to me. I am here again and in no mood for a repeat performance.  
The cheery perky gal who will bring me into the examination room hands me a warm blue gown, and tells me everything off on top and leave the gown open at the back. Of course. She then returns and ushers me into the inner sanctum where I  meet a guy who could be Herman Munster's twin  brother  who all involved are expected to address as " DR." Ok, then, pecking order established,  Cheeryperky hands me two paper cups, one half filled with little white granules and the other filled to the rim with cold water. Toss the pellets in your mouth and guzzle the  water, get it down as fast as you can, they say in tandem, an unwelcome chorus if  ever there ever was.  I am already wary, but I do it and as soon as the water enters my mouth and touches those vile little pellets, my mouth explodes  with foam, as big and squishy as marshmallows but with the consistency of caulk, the thick icky foamy kind, not the neat fine white line kind, and I have to swallow it .... and all the while I am urging and gagging and almost puking, but I manage to get it down even though gulping and urging and gagging at the same time does strange things to my throat. Then DR invites me to lay down on my right side on the oh so warm and comfortable stainless steel table and another cup of water ( at least it looks like water)  is placed unceremoniously in front of  my face.  Cheeryperky plunks a straw into the mixture.The plunk should have been a clue...Drink this down as fast as you can.... it's the halleluiah chorus again and so I get to it, thinking that this speediness might mean that this awful experience may not have to last three hours this time.... it is sooooo NOT water.... it is gross, a liquid with the consistency and taste of a blend of  petroleum jelly and toothpaste and  I am sucking this through the straw and swallowing it as fast as I can, and the urging and gagging thing is still happening.....  and that's when the flashback hits me, that's when I realize that I could probably swallow those bull testicles... how wonderful that there is a positive transfer for this dubious urging/gagging/ swallowing skill....and then there are a series of X-rays and then I am sitting up and waiting for the good news about getting the hell out of here.....

... glad to have that little med lab adventure done. I  will likely not follow up on the flashback, though. Sometimes, one just has to be realistic about what one is willing to swallow.


  1. Bull testicles are supposed to be dipped and fried not boiled. That is just nasty...but then whatever you had to swallow well...that was just nasty too.

  2. Medical science: you gotta respect their imaginative use of your time; I suspect there are probably easier (but less fun) ways to rob a person of their dignity.

  3. WM-- i am so thankful i can count on you to provide these essential details!! thanks, for the recipe and the empathy.
    Pisces-- they are imaginative, yes, indeed. my dignity is still intact, in spite of their best efforts!! thanks for visiting.

  4. Harlequin: I am thinking you are nuts! No! Why are you writing about 'fear' after such? Fear means running out the door or no........not turning up!'Herman Munster's twin brother' I smile......broadly!

  5. The joys of medical--glad it's not me on the other side of the prick and poke--science never cease to amuse. The hallelujah chorus is a nice touch!

  6. Gosh,

    Perhaps there is no accounting for taste, but I guess one measure of my nasty lack of taste is the fact that when I was presented with this thick, chalky crap, I simply slurped it down, furrowed my brow, and wondered as well: When will this procedure end. Obviously I am sorry you endured such torture. I am glad you seem to be on a recovery. You are a funny woman.

  7. SarahA--ya had to be there--- he really was his twin brother ( well, he coulda been!!) thanks for the kind words
    Aporia--did you say " prick" ?? glad you liked the halleluiah touch.
    Andy -- a fellow gulper....good for you!! thanks for the funny line; appreciated :))