“Have you been… injured lately?” he asked before pausing and resting his gaze towards my soul.
“No,” nothing sprung to mind.
“How old are you again?”
It was the same succinct conversation I had had a week prior, and again two week before that. Sometimes the most important conversations, as it turns out, are neither long, meaningful or particularly interesting.
It started well before all that, with a chance and somewhat hung over meeting with an old friend, a gentle walk through a neighbourhood filled with childhood memories for which I was too distracted to bother with. Between light conversational chatter, autumn leaves rustled gently in the warm autumn breeze. It was an unseasonably nice day and a welcome reminder of the summer just passed. We walked for a little over an entire lifetime when I felt deep within what could only be described as pain.
“Can we sit down for a minute?” I asked.
“Sure thing bud” she said as she kept walking, unaware of the urgency that had suddenly swept over my entire being.
“Wait, wait, this will do,” I said as I shuffled on top the closest thigh high load supporting fence and took a few deep breaths. “I’m um… in a little pain right now,” point point “down… there.”
“That happen all the time right?”
“With the skinny jeans, your guys get squished ’cause there’s no room.”
“That’s not a thing. That’s never been a thing.”
“Yeah it is, it happens to my brother all the time.”
“Yeah, it’s still not a thing.” and 10 minutes later when I had recovered, we headed off to the station and wished each other farewell.
And off I went to a lovers house, a previous girlfriend who I had contacted during one of the colder evenings the weeks before. The rekindling of the relationship was a terrible decision for all involved and a lesson we all have to learn eventually. A lesson I have even almost learned myself. We were intimate when it returned, the sharp pain. I surveyed the situation and somehow small gummy raspberry had grown out of the side of my right testicle.
The next day a GP was feeling me up and asking questions, two weeks later an ultrasound technician, then a surgeon. All of them finding 23 to be a particularity interesting age for a young man to have what seemed to be candy hiding next to the regular things in his pants. Thus began the next phase of my life, hospital.