corders in the hague

It's like having the Corders round for dinner - except the kids don't smash stuff and Mike doesn't drink all your booze. And when you're bored you can get rid of us with a mouse click rather than having to start tidying up the house.

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Location: The Hague, Netherlands

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

It's a snip!

After long and careful consideration, Irmie decided it was time for me to get a vasectomy. I was less than enthusiastic at first, but after reading my Australian/American friend Meraiah's blog chronicling her recent infant-induced sleep deprivation horrors I finally agreed and went today to get, as they say here, helped. Actually, they say that when you get your dog or cat done, but I felt about the same.
We drove to a horrendous 1960s monstrosity of a hospital in Delft that was halfway through being demolished. Sadly, the department I was booked into was still standing.
I took a seat in a corridor in which were sitting two other couples clearly awaiting the same fate. One bloke was jabbering away excessively trying in vain to make light of the situation, the other was clutching the hand of his wife (I'm guessing vasectomies are carried out exclusively on men with wives, rather than girlfriends). I opted for sullen silence.
I was third in line so got to see the other two go in and then limp, legs spread wide, back out again.
When it was my turn to go in, a youngish bloke came out wiping his hands on a paper apron on the front of which was a BLOOD STAIN.
He had a small, ragged scar on his top lip which I couldn't help thinking he had got from the involuntary lashing out of a patient's leg. I was also concerned that he had tried to stitch it up himself and made a pretty poor job of it. None of this inspired a great deal of confidence in me.
He had as a sidekick a plump woman in her 50s wearing a hairnet and matching apron - though without the blood.
She instructed me to get out of my trousers, drop my drawers and lie down on the table in front of me. The room was a kind of half-arsed operating theatre - a table draped with paper and one of those scary lights with multiple bulbs familiar to me only from TV hospital dramas.
By way of small talk to relax me (I mean, seriously, why bother even trying. A giant bong stuffed with the finest Lebanese hashish wouldn't have relaxed me.) She complimented me on the excellent job I had done shaving the area to be treated.
I didn't have the nerve to tell her I'd actually gone and bought myself a tube of de-hairing cream rather than take a razor to myself. I know how often I cut my face shaving to be pretty sure that hacking away down there with a blunt bic disposable might have put the urologist out of a job.
The good doctor then picked up my shriveled johnson to get it out of the way and with it still in his icy grip - and without any trace of irony - said: "you might feel a little prick now."
I had my eyes closed by now. I preferred not to see what was happening and what kind of instruments were being deployed on my nether regions. The one redeeming fact about my ordeal was that it didn't make any noise. At the dentist, I can handle the pain, the thing I hate is the noise of bits of my body being chipped/filed/drilled away.
While there was no noise, there was music. I've been unsuccesfully wracking my brain all day trying to come up with an appropriate soundtrack for a vasectomy. All suggestions gratefully received. I may make an itunes playlist. Anyway, hard as I've struggled to come up with something appropriate, I think you'll all agree there couldn't be a LESS appropriate song than Light My Fire by The Doors, and yet that was what was playing. As Sweeny Todd was tackling my wedding tackle, Jim Morrison was moaning "Come on baby, light my fire. Try to set the night on fire." I suppose it could have been worse: It could have been my favorite Doors song, The End.
As he was hacking away, the doctor and his assistant were bitching about various colleagues and they seemed to be particularly disparaging about surgeons. This alarmed me as I was under the impression I was undergoing surgery.
I could draw this story out more, but the fact is that it was all over inside 15 minutes and apart from feeling two little pricks (one each), it was pretty painless. I asked the doctor if I would be able to play hockey a day after the operation and he replied, "You will be able to, but you won't want to." I now know what he meant. It's exactly 12 hours later and there's not a great deal of sharp pain. What it feels like is that somebody has grabbed my scrotum, twisted it through 180 degrees, stretched it down to my knees and then let it twang back up again. It's not a sensation I'm enjoying. Tomorrow I have to ride my motorcycle to Utrecht. I'm not looking forward to it.
On the whole, however, I have to confess that the whole ordeal was not as bad as I'd feared. In fact the worst thing about it all was the cup of truly horrific coffee I was made to drink before being allowed to flee - legs spread wide - the crumbling, condemned hospital.


Blogger Hong Kong Merretts said...

"Love me tender", Elvis?
"Don't let me down" The Beatles
Hmm ...
"Twist and Shout" ??

6:03 PM  
Blogger corders said...

Ive been thinking Great Balls of Fire.

4:25 AM  
Blogger Tim said...

"The first cut is the deepest"?
Mike, my mom thinks you're hilarious. Chrs,

4:11 AM  
Blogger corders said...

Meraiah, like your suggestion the best, though riding my bicycle over a kerb this morning, makes me think that in my case maybe the second cut is the deepest.

5:56 AM  
Blogger dan said...


7:42 AM  
Blogger Tim & M said...

Mike, in the case of your bike ride, I'd suggest "The Final Cut" by Pink Floyd.

3:46 PM  
Blogger Lumberyard said...

I hear you brother. Thanks for posting your experience. I myself am on the road to snipsville. I also am blogging about my trip. Have not done it yet but I'm close.

6:42 PM  

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