Thinking About a Vasectomy
by Doug Powers
"We cannot learn without pain." Aristotle
I spend a great deal of time in awe of the majesty and mystery that is life. Not a day goes by where I don't take a moment to reflect on just how perfectly planned this universe is. Everything, with the possible exception of Todd Bridges and Fruit Roll-Ups, has a unique purpose in this grand vision of the Creator. Take ourselves for example. Working hand in hand, every molecule, atom, and cell comes together to form a creature of perfection. A machine that is built as a self sufficient, long lasting biological miracle until it succumbs to artery plaque. I believe that, as our Lord said, "My body is a temple."
Please take the time to read the above paragraph once again. After that, grab any religious text, from the Koran to the Bible to the writings of Marshall Applewhite. Now if you can, please tell my wife where in any of that it says anything about the meaning of my life including a doctor taking a knife to my crotch.
We're currently working on our 4th child and all of a sudden my wife is stricken with a panic that I just cannot understand. I mean, it's not like she's the one who has to pay for all of this. Things were working out just fine until recently when we've decided to have another child and give the Van Patten's a run for their money. The rest of my family has figured out to just check the Wall Street Journal on a daily basis, and if they see a noticeable up-tick in Johnson & Johnson stock, "Doug must not have gotten that vasectomy yet."
I've done some pondering in an attempt to uncover the reason why I get so nervous at the idea of someone taking a jagged edged Ginsu to, what I so lovingly refer to as "The Crown Jewels of Ireland". I think it goes back to my botched circumcision and ensuing sloppy repair job. Deep in REM sleep I still have flashbacks to my infancy, laying on a table crying while a doctor of questionable sobriety and obvious cataracts fumbled with a scalpel which was about as sharp as Helen Keller's butter knife. I can't get that vision out of my head. Call me crazy, but I'm in no hurry to repeat the experience.
I keep putting it off. It's like firing Bobby Knight, it ain't easy. There's my little fella down there, yelling at the officials and throwing chairs and I just can't bring myself to do anything about it. But do something about it I must. If I don't the world will soon be overrun with tall, introverted people who avoid 12-Step Programs because they're waiting for the elevator and steadfastly refuse to get a vasectomy.
But what are my options? I could feign a newfound enlightenment and religious zeal and practice complete celibacy, though I think my wife would see that I fell off that wagon after she notices that I've been in the bathroom for 3 hours and her "Bikini Depot" catalog is missing. I could go the condom route, though that still may not solve the problem. At least it would give me a chance to use that Trojan that's been in my wallet since 1983, still bearing the tooth marks of a frustrated young man unschooled in the ways of modern packaging. I'm sure if I used it now it would blow out so fast I could probably at least round up some college money by suing Firestone.
I do realize the need on my part to do something before we run out of room in the car. Throw one more kid in my Toyota Camry and all of a sudden we go from being a family to a warm-up act for Ringling Brothers. You don't know how creative you can be until you're jammed in a car. Until I had kids, I had no idea that a Samsonite wheeled suitcase could fit in the glove compartment. Also the mess is horrendous. After we reach any destination with the kids my car looks like a United Airlines flight carrying a full load of childrens books and graham crackers hit a micro-burst. It's at times like those when a vasectomy starts to sound like a good idea. That is, until I start thinking again about the pain.
My wife's even gone as far as trying to get me to talk to her friend's husband, who's had a vasectomy, for "some support." Sure. I've already heard the horror stories. She wants me to be calmed down by a guy who went to some person who makes Josef Mengele look like Dr. Suess, let him take a knife to an area which God only intended a washcloth and Pamela Anderson to go, was in incredible pain and spent the next two days walking around with a package of Birds-Eye frozen peas in his underwear. Yeah, ringing endorsement honey. Tell ya what, pick me up a can of frozen orange juice concentrate and a package of Steak-Umms and I'll have two vasectomies! It'll be a party!
If I do go through with this, I certainly don't want it videotaped. It seems that all they teach these people in medical school anymore is that we really want to tape our surgeries so we can review them over popcorn with the family later that night. Like I really want the moment I've dreaded most (well, make that second-most, the first being that someone would decide to renew "Cop Rock") made into some sort of sick, twisted Zapruder film so that scholars, theologians and urologists for decades to come could review their "pristine scalpel" theory. "See...back, and to the left. Back, and to the left."
We all face moments of crisis in our lives. This is one of mine. I can either face up to my responsibilities like a man, or turn and run away. Actually, I was thinking more about driving, but I don't have enough car seats. Maybe there's an extra one in the glove compartment.
Copyright 2001 By Doug Powers
Copyright © 2001
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