I don’t have much flexibility in my left leg. I can’t recall ever having that much to be honest. And of late it’s been a quite sore (1). Finally, on advice from my seven-foot chiro, I decided to get some tests. I arranged to get an x-ray and an ultrasound all on the same day.
I have to admit I was worried about the ultrasound. Mainly because the scanner would be brushing against my junk and I was fearful of an unintended erection. Especially if the scanner person was at all attractive. But fear not, I managed to resist any form urge in that area. Even as she had to pull my undies back and criss-cross my fruits’ forest with her gel-dripping probe.
So the scanning began. She had to grind it in deep and even with the jelly it still hurt when she slid it back and forth. Then, after she was done, she went to get the doctor.
‘So what I have I got?’ I asked when he came in. ‘A sixty-year-old hip?’
He looked at me. ‘Ah, so you know.’
He was serious.
Yes, it turns out Mikey does in fact have the equivalent of a sixty-year-old hip. It seems my always fucked up body, which has given me so, so much, has indeed always been fucked up. Likely from birth. My hips didn’t align properly which in turn led to my shuffling gait, made worse by completely flat feet (2).
So the doctor told me I basically have X number of kays left in my hip and my cartilage is all but gone. I will likely need a hip replacement at some point in the not too distant future. I asked ‘what, five to ten years?’ and he said ‘well … you will have to discuss that with your doctor.’
As for exercise—you know, all that dedicated walking I do come rain, hail, or fucking shine—then I have to find something else non-weight bearing. Like an exercise bike—such as our 13-year-old bike we just sold for six cents on ebay—or swimming. Yay, swimming. Just the exercise for a balding apple-stomached hairy-bodied man with crippling body issues.
I returned to the tiny, tiny cubicle where my wadded up pants awaited and re-donned my clothes with some difficulty. Then I shuffled to reception to pay up.
‘At least I can get a cane,’ I muttered to no one in particular. The receptionist heard me and smiled in that kind of ‘oh, he got bad news’ kind of way that medical receptionists do when a patient indicates bad news was given. ‘I can get a skull one,’ I said, now I that I had an audience. ‘Plus I can shake it at kids when I tell them to get off my lawn.’
As I left I passed an older couple coming in. As irony would have it their hips probably slightly younger in wear than mine.
I walked in the cool of near-Spring sunshine thinking about what I had heard and how a life-changing moment had just landed on me. One of the shitty ones that we all get—let’s face it, post-puberty it’s all downhill—as opposed to one of the kewl ones like ‘bank error in your favour, collect $200’ or a lotto win (3).
Then as I walked I said to myself ‘I guess I will never run that marathon.’
Then I laughed. I laughed and laughed and laughed. Great hysterical laughter and tears rolled down my furry cheeks at the very idea of anything such as that being done by me. I literally laughed all the way back to work even as I walked down the path, crossed the road, walked past the coffee line, through the doors, and back to my desk.
As I laughed … which just says so much about me … I couldn’t but help think ‘well, at least it’s good material.’(4)
So now I have to work out what to do. I guess it’s getting a new exercise bike since I want to save my ‘X number of kays' for running around with my naturally caffeinated son as opposed to screaming agony inducing walks that simply strip away what little cartilage I have left.
Still … there’s a flip side. I am now one step closer to legitimately getting a motorized scooter (5).
After-all, as Jerry Seinfeld famously once said of airports; ‘make way for the cart people.’
(1) The other night I decided to walk to monthly nerd night as theWife had imbibed and couldn't drive. It was that weird distance where it’s too close for a taxi given the annoyance of booking and the minimum flag-fall, but far enough that the hike is still a bit of a hike. Fuck it, I was souped up on pain killers, so I decided to give it a go. It was a mistake. As I reached the last 800 metres I was limping badly, my leg dragging behind me. So much so a van pulled over and a woman of my age hopped out to offer me a lift. I was unfortunately mistaken about where I was—thinking myself to be a lot closer—and politely refused her very kind offer (and she being a she and me being an ugly me I had no concerns about ending up in a sex dungeon awaiting weight loss so my lovely skin hung lose on my frame). When I finally reached nerd night I was in agony and it took seemingly forever for the pain to ebb away. Good one mimo.
(2) Which, I’ve noticed, has also afflicted my poor just-turned-four son. Fuck. Well, at least when he’s going to get older there will be teeny robots to tool around in his body to fix shit up. Assuming the meteor slash zombie plague doesn'’t get us.
(3) I would have gone with ‘won second prize in a beauty contest’ except I have no delusions of anything approximating physical beauty.
(4) I was listening to Marc Maron’s interview with Greg Fleet. Marc Maron is a comedian in the states who has gained a new lease on his career by interviewing comedians in his garage studio. He's awesome. In the interview Greg Fleet talks about his battles with dug addiction but, like all good writers, mines the fuck out of it for material. He said at one point he remembered being balled up, crying, and even as the tears came he said ‘well, this is good material’ (blub, blub). So I’m in fine company. Comedians are after-all basically self-involved wingers who realize their pain and discomfort and fears are largely shared by others and thus all great things to talk about at length even if no-one is really listening. I also love the fact that according to the interview, even as Greg Fleet was doing a show called 'ten years in a long-sleeved shirt' about his heroin addiction ... he had relapsed. On the version of his show that's on You Tube he admitted to Marc he was actually doped up even as he performed it. Gold.
(5) And maybe even get a disabled car park! Woot! I am rolling in the benefits now.