Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Little Known Fact

At one time in my life I had my scrotum pierced.

I will wait for a moment and let you digest that little tidbit of information that will either fall into the category of, “God, James, I didn’t need to know that!” or “Oh really? I am intrigued and wish to know more.”

Those of you in the second category are in luck. Those of you in the first category I suggest you check out this site while contemplating the immortal words of Dave the Lighting Guy who said, “I think unicorns are kick ass!”

This story, like many good stories involving youthful indiscretions takes place in a town not too far from the border with Mexico. I know it was either Mission or McAllen, my memory of the time being somewhat fuzzy. We had gone down to visit my uncle for a few days one summer and I was ecstatic about the trip because these were the days when the CAF’s main facility was located at the Harlingen Airport rather than way out in Midland plus I was going to get to go to Mexico. At this point I had never been out of the country so going to Mexico sounded like a trip to an exotic land and not the a visit to a place that looked just like some of the seedier parts of Houston with cars that were in slightly worse condition and incomprehensible signs. (This is not to say I do not want to go back to Mexico, but this time I want to go see ruins and stuff, not some crappy border town where the fancy restaurant is called The Cockroach.)

The day we were going to go to Mexico I woke up very excited and ready to go. Since adults can never get their crap together on time and there were several of us going, I had some free time. That was when it happened. For some reason, and to this day I cannot think why, I ended up tangling with the yucca bush outside my uncle’s front door. The yucca is a plant that evolved in (or was intelligently designed for, take your pick) an arid environment. This means they have little prickly bits for protecting themselves from animals seeking their water. In the case of the type of yucca I tangled with the prickly bits manifested as thorns on the tips of the leaves. When I say thorns I don’t mean the little dinky thorns you might find on a rose or the brambles that occur in the piney woods around here, I mean THORNS as in stab you and make you cry thorns. I mean the kind of thorns that can pierce blue jeans and a young mans scrotum thorns and that is exactly what they did to me. As I said, I have no idea why I was leaning into the yucca plant, heck it may have been an accident, all I know is that little veggie spear went right through my jeans and into my junk.

It hurt.

A lot.

I might have cried a little bit.

I went in to the bathroom to examine the damage the plant wrought upon my manhood and determine the next course of action. Clearly I had to tell someone. I didn’t think I pierced anything critical, but you couldn’t be too careful here. I had the future of mankind to think about, if you know what I mean. Eventually I decided to tell my mom about it, since she was a nurse and everything, however rather than just walk up to her and say that the yucca stabbed me in the boys, I went over to her (she was with some of the other adults on the trip) and whispered in her ear that I was not able to go to Mexico. I refused to elaborate more on the issue in public, being somewhat embarrassed about genitalia in general (I was young). Eventually she wormed the problem out of me and confirmed that I was going to be okay.

I ended up going to Mexico and eating in a restaurant called La Cucaracha (which is not getting gigged by MS Word’s spellchecker) and learning that border towns are note quite the exotic land I was anticipating, although upon reflection, now I might be able to appreciate the delights of the border town more than I could in the heady days of my youth.

Like many somewhat humiliating episodes of youth, this has become one of the family stories to be shared whenever the family is gathered and the conversation turns to the amusing tales from our misadventures, and now it has been shared with all of you.

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