Friday, 16 March 2012

Are you Sitting Comfortably Sir? Then I'll Begin...

As tales of woe go, here's one that will have you, as I have been for some time, on the very edge of your seat...

About a month ago, or so, I sat down to type but noticed that I'd an irritation arising from 'below'. It proved (on closer examination!) to be the sudden eruption, overnight, of a single large pile. Haemorroids are unpleasant things that afflict those who sit on unsuitable seats as a matter of course, and fishermen being just the kind who do, I'd caused the thing to put in its unwelcome appearance by sitting for long hours on a fishing seat and thereby putting 'my region' under tension and torsion, resulting in an engorged blood vessel and what proved, on later research, to be no less of a pile than a 'Grade 3 Prolapse', for heavens sake...

At the beginning of my guest's holiday by the Chocolate Canal, I couldn't sit for long, but by the middle of its stay, couldn't sit down at all. Thankfully, the pain it caused had subsided by the end of its fortnight vacation to the point of being just an irritating itch, but then one morning I woke up, and found it had packed its bags, and vanished. Phew!

Thankfully it had gone just before my upcoming trip to Bury Hill. I sat at that lake in comfort, but on the same fishing seat that had caused it to come in the first place. I was most careful about my posture that day, as you can imagine...

I was wearing uncomfortable jeans though. Well, it wasn't the jeans exactly, but the old leather belt that held them up that made them such a blasted pain, because the tongue of the brass buckle had recently ripped through the perforation that had always made the jeans fit my waist snugly, and popped along to the next one down, and that made them hang off my frame in an uncomfortable, but fashionable, gangsta rapper style loose fit, whereby the mid portions of my buttocks would be exposed to the elements if I failed to hitch them up. Of course, I failed to hitch them up when it really mattered, as we shall see...

Next morning I sat down to type up the account of the day at Bury Hill, but once again, noticed I'd an irritation arising from 'below'. Thinking my unwelcome guest had decided to extend his holiday, I investigated, gingerly. What I found was a swelling an inch above the site of the previous one, and right on top of my coccyx. I thought I might have sat down too hard and bruised the bone but by the middle of the day, with the skin now taught and becoming increasingly painful, I started to expect the worst...

Ever since coming up from London to the Midlands, I've suffered very few insect bites, but those I have have all resulted in 'skeeter syndrome'. This is an allergic reaction to the compounds and chemicals that mosquitoes inject before they begin to suck the blood out of their unfortunate human or animal host. You can't blame them. To a 'mossie', it's a matter of life or death whenever they need a meal for if they didn't anaesthetise the local area then you'd feel it and kill them mid-meal. Unfortunately, for some of us, these compounds and chemicals also cause a reaction whereby a whole limb might swell up, the skin hard, tight and painful to the touch, and stay that way for a week or more.

Clearly I 'd been bitten in the neveregions by dint of the fact that my bum crack had been dangerously exposed by my accidentally fashionable low-slung jeans at Bury Hill, not only to everyone who'd passed by, but to all its flying parasites too. The only consolation being that the bite had occurred where it had and not an inch lower, in which case I'd have been hospitalised and come home resplendent with dangling pipe out of the fundament, in order to vent the inevitable...

Four days of excruciating pain later, and with no sign of the butt-cheek-filling swell relenting, and with the skin as tight as a pitched up snare drum, I decided I needed a hair cut. Off I went around the corner to 'Trendy Haircut' one of a chain of the same hilariously named lock-chopping establishments in the City of Coventry. The barber was having a meal and the shop was empty, so I sat down on the swiveling barber's chair and tried very hard to make my self comfortable, but which proved impossible to achieve to any degree. I asked him to finish his meal before attending my needs...

When he'd finished, he sat up and asked if 'I', sitting there bolt upright in the only posture I'd found that achieved a bearable level of his polite concerns, 'am sitting comfortably' and what 'Sir would be wanting' in the way of shortness. I indicated a couple of inches between thumb and forefinger, and left it at that. He grabbed the electric trimmers first, and I thought he was about to shave the back of my neck before he began with the scissors, but then he made an unexpected move, that in shock I failed to parry, and had sheared the right side of my head down to a quarter-inch of stubble in a matter of seconds!

It was too late to act even before I'd fully realised what had happened. I was destined to be shorn down all over to what I knew would be on my style of head, and when he'd completed his work to his own satisfaction, a convict's crop. Twenty minutes later and a fiver shorter in the pocket, I exited the barber's to a chill wind about the bonce. I had forgotten all my 'other' pain briefly whilst aghast at, and viewing in the wall sized mirror as it progressed, my unexpected depilation. Now it had returned with a vengeance...

Judy? Sympathy? She's having none of it, though she strokes the stubble appreciatively, as might a gangster's moll...

"Brought it upon yourself, you silly boy," and, I guessed I had.


Sleepless nights spent tossing and turning just trying to lie in some contorted way that would put little or no pressure on my buttocks. Tiring days spent standing up the whole time wondering when the hell the swelling and the pain it was causing, would abate. It didn't seem to want to. But then, yesterday at noon, I sensed that it was on the way out the 'back door'. It was still swollen and painful but the pain had just started to become an itch, and that's the first sign that skeeter syndrome's allergic reactions are finally dealt a decisive blow by the body's temporarily overpowered immune system. From the itch on in, it's all about slow recovery.

In the evening I even ventured out to catch perch noticing that sitting on my backpack stool was manageable. Keith turned up unexpectedly for the last hour of daylight, but he never noticed anything amiss in my outward demeanour. I only managed to catch a double-figure carp though, not any big perch. Nevertheless, by the end of the session I'd realised that the worst was truly over, cycling home (the seat of the bike was perfectly positioned) along the wind and down hill without a care and a sense of impending freedom upon me.

This morning I sit to type in my low-slug gangsta jeans, the old busted belt still threaded through, with my convict's hairdo slowly coming to terms with the scalp that grows it, and I am comfortable, for the first time, in what seems an interminable age of pain, and me shifting every which way in my seat in vain attempts to allay the worst of it.

Only after pain subsides do you realise what a true lack of the sense feels like. It feels, heavenly! Even the inevitable itch of healing feels good. I want to scratch it. Make it feel even better!

Now, new belt I think and in short order, and a hat on my head after dark. Wouldn't want to intimidate the neighbours with my new found 'look for spring'.

And though I suppose that mosquitoes have their rightful place in Mother Nature's grand scheme, I fail to see any in mine. So, insect repellent in the tackle bag to smear on exposed delicate regions, and a fly swat in the house should suffice to keep them away, and their number down to safe levels, when around and about my person. I just can't risk it...

Them being to me, a right royal pain in the arse.

PS: Sorry no pictures to illustrate, didn't think they'd be necessary, or even desirable.

Not that I took any, I hasten to add....


  1. I wish I had not read that post at lunchtime but I am grateful that there is no accompanying photos!
    Would have been a lot worse if you had both ailments at the same time!


  2. That has put me right off my egg and cress Jeff.....thanks ...

    Do you now have the same Barnet as I then .....


  3. Doesn't sound at all nice Jeff!
    I presume the convict style haircut was a number 1?

  4. Joe, Baz, sorry about the lunches. The two at once would have been purgatory.

    Mark, I thought I heard him mutter "a number two Sir' just as I left...!

  5. That is a lot more information than we needed I think. Mind you that is a common complaint for anglers having been sitting on the bank for the last twenty years or so, one that fortunately I managed to avoid - so far!

  6. Excellent... a great read. Made me laugh out loud, most unusual.

    Strange but true, one of the two words to prove we are not robots spelt... itchem


  7. Put me right off me KFC that Jeff.
    I don't think I could stomach another popcorn chicken ball ever again!

  8. I fished with the guys from Attleborough Sports a few years back and one of them was telling me about his operation to remove his stragulated piles and the subsequent packing with wadding that, in his words were, "Packed in like loading one of (HMS) Victory's canons!"

    He then went on to say that they wouldn't let you out of hospital until you had had a bowel movement and that, "There is nothing more painful than the second one of those you have."

    Obviously I felt compelled to ask as to why the second one is painful to which he replied, "Because after the first one you know what's coming!"

    He was a funny bloke but best not reveal names.

    Let's hope you don't have to go down the surgery route though.

  9. Ouch! That sounds vile and I do sympathise.

    No surgery ! It's all cleared up now, thanks heavens.