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Monday 19th May 2014

4194/17113

I was at the Doctors this morning for a minor operation to remove a cyst on my back. Yes, I am human and thus grotesque. It's been there for a while, but I don't care as it's on my back and I can't see it, but my wife told me I had to get it seen to (just because the last time I had one, it became inflamed and painful and I had to have antibiotics before it exploded - what are the chances that that would happen again?) Bloody wives. With their caring about your well being. They're brilliant aren't they? Am I right fellas? Don't leave me hanging here.

Anyway the GP had told me that she could get rid of it for me, but that I'd have to go under the knife and today was the day. Things seemed a little disorganised when I got there, the room I was meant to go in wasn't ready, so I had to have my local anaesthetic and then wait for ten minutes and then once we were in the room the doctor didn't know how to move the bed around and there was no paper sheeting on the roll. But that was probably OK. It's not like I was trusting these people to cut into my flesh with knives and not kill me.

Finally all was set and I was lying face down on the bed with the doctor and a nurse making their preparations. They made an exploratory cut just to check that the anaesthetic had worked. They told me I should only feel pressure, but I could feel the knife cutting into me and though it wasn't too painful, it was a bit painful. But I didn't know if that was normal or not. As I wasn't shouting out about being stabbed in the back I assumed it was OK. I didn't want to look like a baby who couldn't even stand having sharp knives pushing into his back. I thought of all the people who had been operated on before pain relief became a possibility and thought I probably shouldn't make a fuss about this minor discomfort.

After a few minutes of prodding and me feeling quite a bit of sensation a move was made that hurt a bit more and I flinched and they decided to give me more anaesthetic. Which was probably for the best. And indeed once that I had done its work my back was a lot more numb and I only felt the occasional very slight twinge of pain from there on in.

But the procedure was taking a lot longer than I had anticipated and at one point the nurse and the doctor were whispering to each other, which I thought was probably not a good sign. I was glad all this was happening behind me. I am not great with blood, even when it's someone else's or it's just pretend blood on a TV show, so I didn't really want to see my own. Or my beautiful body being hacked at.

A different nurse took over from the first one, not, I don't think because it was such a long operation, just that she had meant to be in on the procedure from the start. She seemed disappointed to have missed this saying this was one of her favourite things to do. I don't know if she meant minor operations in general or specifically cutting cysts out of the back of middle-aged men. But she seemed a bit put out to have missed the fun.

Finally the doctor finished and they started to sew me up. But they didn't have enough cotton (or whatever they're using) which again made me think that maybe things had been a bit more extreme than they were expecting. She told me that the wound was quite deep and that the cyst had been difficult to extract. I had kind of worked that out. But I was sewn up and the doctor left and the new nurse finished up. She asked me if it had been a bit of a spurter as there was quite a lot of blood on the floor. I had been oblivious to the drama going on behind (or inside) my back, thankfully. The nurse laughed because she could see that it had gone on the other nurse's shoes and there were bloody footprints on the floor. Perhaps she liked doing operations because of the grim comedy involved. It made it feel like a crime scene, but everything was cleaned up as I lay face down on the bed so I never got to see the bloody aftermath.

I wondered if they'd give me the cyst to take away in a little jar - I thought it might make an interesting item for the final "What's in the bag?" at Fubar radio tomorrow. But I wasn't offered it. I was just told that I wasn't allowed to do any upper body exercise for the next week so that I don't rip out the stitches, which is a shame, though hopefully I can still do some running. It might mean we have to postpone the start of my personal training though.

I had thought about relaxing in the afternoon with a bit of Me vs Me snooker, but wondered if that might be too energetic and the cueing might burst my stitches, so i mainly took things easy.

Tickets for the Friday show of "We're All Going To Die!" at the Bloomsbury are going fast so book now if you want to come and see the DVD record and have your laughter (or lack of) recorded for posterity! There are plenty of tickets for Thursday and so there's a special offer on tickets.  You can get £5 off (tickets for just £10) if you call 020 3108 1000 and quote RH-PROMOCODE. Do let your friends know about the show if you enjoyed it. Be nice to go out on a bang. I am giving a free "10" DVD to everyone who attends these last two shows (previously it was just going to be for the final show). As the "10" DVD costs £12, if you come on Thursday you're essentially getting £2 to attend. Right?




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My new stand up show, Lord of the Dance Settee will be on at the George Sq Theatre at 10.45pm every night of the Edinburgh Fringe Buy tickets here.
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