Archive for March, 2011

If You Open Your Mind Too Much, Your Brain Will Fall Out

Is it heterophobic to dislike straight people who complain about heterophobia? I am struggling to believe it is a Real And Serious Problem. I am usually pretty good at looking at a problem from both sides, but I have searched the whole of the internet and have come up with no recorded circumstances of somebody being beaten up due to a serious case of heterosexuality. It just does not seem like something that has ever happened, unless that straight guy was being a dick about it. But now I gotta listen to straight people complaining about ‘that one gay guy, and he was like- why are you here- and I was like, dude, I can drink where I want like, what a dick like, jesus, I hate that’*. I don’t wanna be controversial or anything [heaven forbid], but when I go into a bar and get hassled because of my sexuality, it’s usually a lot worse than that.

Unfortunately, Straight People Who Complain About Heterophobia [or Breeders, as they like to be known] don’t think my complaints are as valid. ‘No, like, you don’t understand, Sinead, this guy was being A DICK about it’ they say. ‘All I asked him was if he was a top or a bottom like, it was just a question’. Man, that story takes me back to the time I went to a straight people club with my girlfriend and that crowd of men sleazed all over us, tried to touch my lady friend up and then followed us home and tried to get into my house so they could watch us do it. Or the time I got punched in the face for being a dyke by those teenagers when I was walking home from college. Oh wait, hang on, no it doesn’t. Because what happened to you was Not A Big Deal, and you were kind of a dick.

The next time a really drunkstraight girl in the G asks me how lesbians REALLY have sex [as opposed to pretend to have sex, I assume], do I have to give her a straight answer? Because that seems like a total waste of the years I have spent collecting hilarious one- liners for just such an occasion. And where am I supposed to use my withering look now? Man, I think I need some kind of workshop on this topic. I clearly do not understand how hard it is to be a straight person in a gay bar- How Embarrassing for me.

Speaking of really annoying straight people, my Dad is in serious need of a job, or Imma cut a bitch. The absolute boredom that has enveloped him appears to have reached critical mass, and now he has to spread that boredom around or he will explode from it. The man is leaking really terrible anecdotes you guys. It’s pretty upsetting.

It started out innocently enough, with a preoccupation with What Everyone He Has Ever Met/ Is Standing Beside Is Going To Eat Today. That is vaguely annoying, but whatever, you figure, he’s just starting a conversation. Then it’s like he was possessed. Instead of casually asking what you were cooking when he came into the room, he started to appear suddenly from around corners and ask you what you were making for lunch. Ambushing people on their way into the kitchen with  a ‘WHAT ARE YOU DOING WILL IT BE NICE YES THAT SOUNDS LOVELY’, culminating in him waking up especially the other morning at eight just so he could ask me what I was getting in the Chinese twelve hours later. Dad, I have no idea, all I want right now are Nut Flakers.

I think it’s time for an intervention.

Earlier in the week, he ended up spending a lot of time out of the house, and so obviously hadn’t gotten a chance to release the monotony via kitchen based enquiries. This terrible chain of events led to an hour long lecture for me and my sister on the riveting subject of ‘How I Stopped My Head From Getting Sunburned And Giving Me Headaches’. Don’t rush out and buy the book you guys, Imma tell you the secret right now- turns out you gotta take your hat off for a little bit every hour while you’re on holiday.

I’ve been a teenager, and I’ve been bored, but my lord, I have never seen a 15 year old actually lose the will to live. Breathing became a conscious effort for my sister. It was intense. The hardest part was when he mimed taking his hat on and off- complete with sound effects- for what felt like a hundred years. I thought she was gone for sure. Luckily he stopped before I had to call an ambulance or put on a Desperate Housewives box set or something, but it was touch and go there for a bit. I’m pretty sure my face melted slightly, trying to escape the room. It definitely seems lower.

A NOTE: The views expressed in this blog are not expressive of the entire heterophobic community- some of those guys really love hearing about my Dad and his mad hat skillz. Go figure.

*Some straight people who are in fact Pretty Rad are hassled by gay people for no reason, but that is not because of a difference in sexuality I think, more because gay people can be Dickheads too. Being hassled by a douche is not a fun thing, but it’s sure as hell not a hate crime either. It’s just god’s way of telling you you’re better than other people- Good Times!

Tea-hab is a bitch

I am officially bored of being sick. Especially of having a Mystery Illness. Mystery Illness sucks ass, because everyone has an opinion about it. An old lady at work yesterday noticed I was doubled over in pain and recommended a hot water bottle. She said a hot water bottle was the best cure for anything, and I can see what she means, if by ‘anything’ she meant ‘being cold and in bed’. Otherwise it’s pretty much the most impractical thing. Strapping a hot water bottle to my abdomen until I get better is definitely not the best way to deal with Mystery Illness, unless when I go to the doctor again tomorrow she diagnoses me with abdominal freezing. How embarrassing for me if she does. But it hasn’t come up yet.

So far, my Mystery Illness shortlist is: A Peptic Ulcer has exploded, A hernia has exploded/whatever it is that  hernias actually do, my stomach is torn or some kind of ovarian cyst exploded. Every illness has it’s fan at this stage, I’m almost afraid to find out for sure because I feel like I’ll be disappointing someone. I feel like Dermot O Leary on the X Factor, basically, except without the trendy suits and money. My family have for some reason all come down on the side of some kind of cyst, I suppose because it’s the most fun thing to stage whisper across a living room.

‘IS SINEAD ALRIGHT?’

NO, I HEAR SHE MIGHT HAVE A *look dramatically around, as if there are secret health spies hiding behind the sofa* [whisper loudly] CYST’

‘OH LORD. SINEAD ARE YOU ALRIGHT?’

‘Who are you and why are you looking behind my couch?’

 

It’s a weird feeling, having your entire family talking about your ovaries. It’s hard to get used to. No matter how blasé a person is about personal issues, I don’t think there’s a single human being in the entire world who cabe comfortable when their grandfather asks them ‘how’re you doing, you know, ovarianly?’ Granddad, I have no idea how to answer that question. Who told you I have a reproductive system?

Luckily for me, the doctor lady thinks it was my stomach that has exploded now, so I don’t have to deny the existence of my ovaries to save embarrassment anymore. Unluckily, the doctor- lady also thinks I am allergic to my life, so I’m banned from doing everything I love forever. I mean, being banned from some things I love would be fine- it’s lent, self-denial is totally in season right now, I could be like one of those cool kids with their not eating crisps and belief in some kind of god character- but giving up everything? Harsh times. I’ve found that I don’t know what to do with myself when I’m not drinking tea, wearing tight pants and smoking. That’s pretty much my default state. Seriously, go back in time two weeks, drop me at a bus stop, or in a town somewhere, and within ten minutes I’ll be doing two out of those three things, if not them all. Drop me at a bus stop now and I’ll just crouch there in pain, baggy-pantsed and uncomfortably unaware of what to do next.

Also, I have discovered a pet peeve I have about decaf anything- why does it have to taste like arse? What is it about people who like to have their beverages without caffeine or sugar or milk that makes them also want it to taste like a cat drank it first? Is it some kind of masochism, are there people in the world who are getting off on the fact that they have a cup of tea that is basically wrong? Is decaf tea in fact the tea Arthur Dent was stuck with, because it does taste almost- but not quite- entirely unlike tea? These are the questions that I ponder now, instead of wearing tight pants and smoking. I’m pretty much officially Not Cool Anymore.

And you know what, it’s a pretty terrible time to be desperately uncool, because there are teenagers drinking all over the place after our Paddy’s day parade, which, in true, time- honoured tradition, we are having nowhere near the actual Paddy’s day ‘in case it clashes’. Pretty sure parades that are supposed to happen on the same day are supposed to clash, you guys. Way to think outside the box though. I’m sure the whole world is grateful that you gave them the chance to look at a hundred tractors a week before everywhere else in the country.

Parades in Banagher have really gone downhill lately. The first one we had here was hilarious, thanks to the fantastic drunk people on the Supervalu float, dressed- for no reason at all- like they were at a rave in 1976. Comedy gold. The year after that the comedy got more intense almost by accident, thanks to the fantastic Unwed Mothers float [no, I’m serious]. Unwed Mother’s marching together down Main St. is going down in history as the closest real life has ever gotten to an episode of Father Ted. And now all we have are about fifty thousand different varieties of boy scouts and tractors. What was once a hilarious day out for all the family has now become an event that is only enjoyable for rural paeophiles. With tractor- envy.

How embarrassing.

 

Some people will do anything for a day off

Last week, my insides decided that I was taking advantage of them. I had become complacent about working correctly, and they felt I needed to stop for a minute and consider the effort they go to every day, just so I can eat all of the hula hoops.

Anyway, long story short, I got out of bed, chipper as ever, put my uniform on, and then something inside me exploded.

It was pretty intense.

A normal person at this point would probably have screamed out in agony, demanded cold compresses and ambulances and all manner of over the top exclamations from dearest family members. Maybe even a silently weeping child in the background somewhere, for atmosphere. I am not such a person. I thought it was hilarious.

 

Being unable to stand because of crippling pain is comedy gold, whether you like it or not. I had to hobble downstairs like a little old lady. There is nothing about trying to walk in the foetal position that isn’t inherently funny when you’re 21.

Downstairs, I think the pain took over my brain, and instead of being obnoxious and loud as usual, I turned into some kind of Elizabeth Bennet character. I hobbled into my living room, collapsed on the floor in front of my parents and said, quite politely

‘I seem to have exploded’

 

My parents were non-plussed.

‘Really?’ said my mother, who was watching a game of bridge on the internet. ‘What do you mean exploded?’

I writhed a bit with agony, regained my composure and returned flippantly ‘Oh, somewhere in my stomach region, just seems to have had a bit of an explosion’

‘Will you be able for work?’ She asked, not really listening.

My Dad at this point realised that, though he doesn’t know all that much about me and my habits, I don’t usually lie on the carpet, moaning slightly, and so he rang the doctor for me. I called work and explained to them that I had a bit of a possibly serious explosion issue, and was going to have it checked out.

‘Probably the ‘flu’, said work.

 

I got a lift up to the doctor, and hobbled in, scaring the entire waiting room. An old woman who was coughing melodramatically took against me because she was no longer The Worst Patient Waiting To Be Seen, and everyone knows there’s nothing like being the sickest person at the doctors. Through the pain, I was quite enjoying it.

‘Oh this?’, I said to everyone who asked, ‘No idea. Just exploded this morning. Thought I’d check it out’.

Everyone was really impressed.

 

The doctor called me in, and it was a new chap, from South Africa, which is a lovely accent. I felt like telling him about my experience pretending to be South African, but then I thought no, stick to the pain thing, if he think’s you’re being racist he might not fix it.

The doctor made me lie on the bed thing, poked me in the stomach a few times until I thought I was going to pass out, and then asked me was I on birth control.

‘No, I’m a gayer’ didn’t seem to clear things up for him, and, after a horrendously embarrassing conversation about sexuality ensued, he called my mother in and explained to her what was going on.

‘She’s exploded inside.’ He said. ‘It could be appendix, or an ulcer, or an ectopic pregnancy or anything’

‘It’s not an ectopic pregnancy’ I assured him.

‘It could be’, he insisted. ‘The pain is in the right area’

‘It’s not, trust me’  I said.

My mother butted in at that point to ask him what they would have to do if it WAS an ectopic pregnancy, and they were having a lovely time talking about how they would remove it, when the pain got the better of me and I yelled  ‘LOOK CHAPS, I AM NOT CARRYING ECTOPIC JESUS’, and, after they had looked at me as if I was mad for a bit, the doctor sent me to hospital.

 

Hospital has changed since I was last there. Apparently, in A&E, a man with a broken wrist is more important than a woman who might have had a stroke, and a child who needs some stiches is of a higher priority than me, doubled over in agony, unable to concentrate on Home and Away. But eventually they let me in. Grudgingly.

The nurse took out the pain scale chart, and asked me where I was on it, and- not for the first time that day- I thought about how much better the pain scale on Hyperbole and A Half is. The nurse decided I was at least a 12, which; I appreciate that you can see I am in great pain, but please, just write ten because doctors are stupid and don’t appreciate jokes.

Due to my intense pain, I got my own cubicle thing with a bed to lie in, and a nurse came around with painkillers for me, which were nowhere near adequate, and she left and I lay there, out of sight for three long hours of agony. I suddenly realised why trolleys in the hallway were actually a good idea- put me on one of those, I’d have been given amazing medication. Maybe even a scan to see where the explosion was, or at the very least a lollipop and a sticker with a lion on it [for being brave].

The doctor arrived, and it was clear he didn’t think there was anything wrong with me. He said it was probably period pain, even though I didn’t have my period, but it sure made me want to smack him around a bit. Luckily for him I was embracing the foetal position.

The nurses convinced him I probably wasn’t just having some hormones, and he did some more poking and then did the most glorious thing ever- he hooked me up with superdrugs. I got the biggest bottle of painkilling medication I have ever seen hooked up to my arm, and it was glorious. I immediately forgave him for thinking I had a bit of a cramp.

And then the fool went and got a specialist. Now, here is some advice for doctors everywhere: If you want a specialist to look at your patient, then get him in BEFORE you medicate the person, otherwise it’s a collosal waste of time. The chap basically had to punch me in the ovaries before I could feel anything, it was very embarrassing for us all. But he said probably it wasn’t my appendix, and sent me home. Not until after I had convinced him and the regular doctor about a million times that yes, I was quite sure it wasn’t an ectopic pregnancy.

It took a few hours for the painillers to wear off, at which point I returned to crippling agony, which these fancy tablets I have now get rid of, along with my appetite and ability  to not slur my words, but I’m happy to sacrifice grammar for not feeling the explosion. It’s the best trade ever.

And alright, so there are only 2 days worth of painkiller left, and they didn’t do anything to fix the problem so there is still a part of me that has exploded and may well explode again, but at least we are now all pretty sure that it is

1:Not my appendix

2: Not an ectopic pregnancy [though I think I’m the only one who is sure about that]

 

Basically, everyone who has ever said anything bad about our health service is a fool. It took 12 hours of intense pain, a bottle of painkillers and cost me probably lots of money, but look at that- we know 2 things I have that haven’t exploded.

Good job, HSE!