I brought a beautiful girl home and she played with my microscope.

If you have ever read Neil Strauss, The Game, you would be familiar with the term term “Average frustrated chump”, this is opposed to a player. I often like to think that I’m the later, but in reality I’m the former. This was confirmed the other night when I met a very attractive woman, we talked for hours and then she came back to my apartment. We cracked open a bottle of wine and then she played with my microscope. I would really like to say that the last part was metaphor.

It would have been at least 2 am and I was leaving my favorite late night haunt/meat market in Collingwood alone, because all my friends had piked. As I was about to hail a taxi a scruffy looking hipster chick was standing on the road holding an even rougher looking skateboard. I asked her for a ride, she obliged and held my blazer. I went alone and busted out a slide, followed by a shove-it. I then attempted a harder trick and fell on my ass. A few on looking punters either cheered, or went ouch.

This was a catalyst for several other punters attempting some tricks they could do in their youth. Some failed, others succeeded. I had a few more goes and pulled off my signature move, a hand stand while rolling. A pretty brunette had a go after me and wanted to try a few harder tricks. I held her hands and playfully instructed her for about 10 minutes. Then the scruffy hipster wanted her deck back and the brunette joined her friends on the other side of the street. A light-bulb hit, I should have gotten her number and offered to give her some sober skateboarding lessons.

By this stage she was standing with two dudes next to a taxi. Determined, I went over anyway. She introduced me to her friends that were about to get into a taxi. They asked if I want to join them at another club in the city. Fuck it, this girl was stunning, and clearly not with any of these dudes, so I joined. As I got into the taxi with the hot brunette and her two male friends, a duchy looking dude also tried to get in. The taxi driver refused as we were full and drove off. The hot brunette, said, “Shit, that guy was my date tonight”. She then started on a rant to her male friends about how she had been single for two months and that she is never single, then went on about another guy she was dating.

By this stage ‘crazy’ warning bells were ringing in my head, but she was incredibly attractive and still above the crazy hot line. The taxi dropped us off around the corner from the club and after we all got out, she paused to tie her boot laces. Her friend walked ahead and when she stood back up, I told her that I wanted to get her number to give her a skate lesson, even though she clearly didn’t have any problems getting a date. Chatting about skateboarding, we walked towards the club.

Her friends had been to the club earlier and already had stamps, so we were instructed by the bouncers to line up in the other queue. Walking over to the other queue we stopped at a windowsill where she used a lolly wrapper to demonstrate a trick her pro skater ex-boyfriend could do. Using the lolly wrapper, like a Tech Deck I showed her a few of my favorite moves. We then sat on the windowsill and chatted for the next few hours about our heritages, life, religion, languages, science and education. At one stage she mentioned that she had lost 17 kg’s. I was pretty impressed. She told me to poke her stomach, to see how firm it was. She then asked me to poke her boobs, because they were also firm. Not wanting to grope her in public I gave them a poke near the top and acting cool I was like, “yeah there pretty firm.” I told her about how I had recently lost 5 kg’s, and was working towards achieving a six pack.  She started feeling my muscles. As she was studying osteopathy, she talked me through all the names of the muscles in my back and arms, feeling each one as she went through the list.

By this stage it was getting late/early and I could see the faintness of morning light in the sky. I mentioned it was getting early and that we had been sitting there for a long time and that we should continue this conversation over a cup of tea at one of our houses. She suggested we drink something stronger, so we decided upon my place, via the 24 hour bottle shop on Chapel St.

Sauvignon Blanc in tow we got to my place as morning broke. She asked to use the bathroom. I took the opportunity to clean the empty beer bottles off my coffee table, put on some music and pull out some of my best wine glasses. I need to pee too, so when she returned from the bathroom, I told her to crack open the bottle and went to the loo. I could smell the remnants of shit in the bathroom. She must have taken a dump. Whatever, she was hot and we all have to poo sometimes.

When I returned, she asked if I had a phone charger. She had an IPhone and I use android, so I told her she was out of luck. She begged me, so I pulled out my big box of cables and together we found a charger from when I had an iPod about 10 years ago. It was a USB charger, so she sat at my desk to send a few messages.

The conservation went back to muscles, and she lifted up her dress to revel, her stomach to talk me through some of the muscle groups and layers of muscles in her stomach. As she did so, she said “this is non sexual”. But fuck, she had come back to my house, we were drinking wine and she was standing facing me with her dress lift up, reveling her black tights and one of the best midriffs I have ever seen. So I attempted to kiss her, she pushed me back, and said “hey I said this is non sexual”. Fuck! I had blown my chance. She kept with the conservation about muscles and I suggested having a cigarette on the balcony.

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As we were puffing away, she told me the story about Edmond Halley, of Halley’s Comet fame and how he was responsible for reviling Isaac Newton’s work to the world. It was a pretty cool story and she told it in detail. Determined to get in her pants, I thought that I could use my nerdiness. I told her that I had something awesome, that only someone like her, with a penchant for science would appreciate.

So I did it, I pulled my microscope out from the back of the wardrobe, where it has lived undisturbed for many years. Some people get cars from their parents for their 18th, I got a microscope. She was generally impressed. I set it up next to my computer, where her phone was charging. My fish tank also lives on my desk, so we pulled out a bit of algae to look at. Looking at the fine detail of the tank algae, she was as excited as a little kid opening their presents on Christmas day. Yeah, win for the nerd.

Thinking I might have a chance back in, strategically I showed her my shell collection. Conveniently located on a shelf in my bedroom, we sat on the end of my bed and discussed shells. She had unplugged her phone at this stage and looked at the time, it was 8:30 am, she told me that she had to go home and feed her dog. She told me that she had enjoyed hanging out and got my number, I told her to prank me so I had hers, she didn’t and I didn’t push it. Clearly I was getting nowhere, even with my shell collection. Chicks dig shells, right? She called a taxi, when it arrived she gave me a peck on the cheek and a hug. As she walked out, I yelled out “call me for a skate lesson.” She never did.

Next time I’m faced with a similar situation, fuck it I’m just going to do the naked man.

Superman stripper

A friend of my brother works as a topless waiter. He is well over 6 foot, has natural beautiful olive skin and is built like Adonis. I’m a polar opposite. So it is surprising that I ended up as the impromptu stripper at a hen’s party.

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It was invited to a colleagues Halloween party. Going by reports from previous years attendees, I had high expectations. Having never dressed up for this American ritual before, I decided to go all out. I only had one costume in mind, my urging desire to dress as superman had spurred from childhood. For half the price of buying the costume online, the day before the party I hired a pre-worn, funky smelling ensemble from a suburban costume shop.

The instant I arrived home with Clark Kent’s alter ego in tow, I whipped off my clothes and threw it on. It was still just as awesome as when I tried it on in the store. I did discover one minor problem, no fly. So I unstitched a seam in the crouch, which was concealed by the separate external red undies. Perfect I can piss without having to take most of the suit off. This is essential considering my drinking habits.

The party evening arrived. After googling the superman hair curl and spending half an hour and a shit-ton of hair gel I perfected the curl. I slapped on the costume, fake muscle chest and all. My costume was complete. With my man bag in toe (no pockets in the costume) I walked out of my building to hail a cab. After a few enthusiastic honks from passing motorists, a sympathetic cabbie gave me a lift.

I arrived at the venue the obligatory hour after the invite start time. The place was still almost empty, apart from the over-catering from the host. Because of the party’s increasing popularity the host had hired the basement of a bar. However, due to a falling out with a few other colleagues the party was a flop. I could count all present on both hands.

On the plus side, there were two available ladies present. One was a former colleague and the other her friend. Stupidly, I went for the friend. We danced, I got her digits, and we went on a couple of uneventful dates. Anyway, not long after she left the venue the manager kicked us all into the public part of the bar.

Mingling in the public bar were a few other superheroes and a ninja turtle in Lycra. For some reason when men see another man dressed in Lycra, in a social booze-enriched situation there is a compelling urge to grab man ass. Once I had that out of my system, and other dudes had it out of theirs, I lost interest and went home.

Arriving back home, I got changed out of my costume and went for a cigarette on my balcony. Across the street from my building are several serviced apartments. Out the front and directly across the road were a group of young ladies brandishing a blowup doll and waving it at passing motorists. They were clearly on a hen’s night.

Ceasing the moment, I yelled out to them. I told them that I had a surprise in stalled, and they should wait a minute for it. I butted out my cancer stick, dashed into my bedroom and changed back into the costume. My hair was still firmly in the superman curl as I ran down my stairs, across the nature strip and halted at the gutter. I stood there with my hands on hips, chest out with a thousand yard stair into the abyss.

My entrance clearly worked, the girls yelled at me, demanded that I cross onto their side of the road. When I got there they asked me if I wanted to strip. Not one to decline a chance to nude up, I accepted the offer. They led me into their apartment, turned up the stereo and offered me a stiff drink.

I dimmed the lights, slammed down the drink and started dancing. They demanded that I de-robed, so I took the top half of the muscle suit off. Then one of them screamed that she wanted to see my dick. They all screamed in support, so I lowered the costume and revealed my manhood.

Pyramid Rock

In my early-twenties I lived and worked on a remote fish farm in South Australia. The desolate area was void of many things. Of most critical to me was the lack of culture and women, so on my breaks I endeavored to immerse myself in both. After looking after the fish on Christmas day, I had a week off over New Year’s. My planed endeavor was a large three day music festival on Phillip Island, in my native state of Victoria.

The logistics of getting to the festival from remote South Australia, was not quite straight forward. After four separate car trips, two plane rides and a bus, I arrived at Phillip Island with my friend Aaron who picked me up in Melbourne. Arriving at the Festival site, we were held up in the car queue waiting for the mandatory car search. We cracked open the last of our beers before they were confiscated by festival security and cheersed to a great festival. Then Aaron opened the dashboard compartment of his Subaru Forester to reveal his ticket. My Heart dropped, FUCK! My tick was sitting on my desk, in my bedroom back at my parent’s house in Melbourne.

Instinctively I called my Dad. It was before smart phones, but we both had camera phones. My resourceful father sent me a picture of the ticket. Phone in hand, I set upon the main info booth located at the base of the line. Heartbreakingly they informed me that a photo was not good enough. Devastated, I called my dad back. The champion knew how much I was looking forward to the festival, so he decided to make the four hour return drive to deliver my ticket.

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My Dad drove two hours to drop off my forgotten ticket.

After a long boring wait sitting on the grass on the side of the highway, outside the festival area for my legendry father, I had my ticket and was finally allowed in. Now I just needed to gather my shit and set up camp. My clothes and tent were in Aaron’s car, he was camped with his brothers group of friends. My swag was with another mate, who was with my university friends and my drugs were with an old school friend. I had some gathering to do.

The festival site was basically on a large field, to distinguish camps many punters used large flagpoles with campsite flags and banners. Using my mobile to call my friends and using the flags for navigation I was able to get my gear off Aaron and find my university friends, where I threw my all my gear on a pile to mark out my spot. My University friend Kevin gave me a tour of our makeshift campsite. It consisted of a few cars, tents and a small tarp. Most importantly was the pissing spot, it was between two cars that were parked about a meter apart. I was basically sorted, except for the drugs.

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The camping area. At night, in the dark and under the influence all the tents and cars look the fucking same.

I called my high school mate Gordon, unlike Aaron’s bros camp, my high school mates’ camp was relatively close by. My high school mates were mostly tradies, this meant that they had the cash and the skills to make an impressive campsite, they even had a trampoline. Acting as the middle man for my university friends I paid for and picked up a bag of pills. My friend had one spare, never really one for anything harder than pot I purchased the extra one in case I changed my mind.

Back at basecamp I cracked open a VB can that was smuggled inside the door of Wayne’s shitty commodore and starred at my pile of belongings that would become my erect tent. Just as I was about to consider putting up my tent Mark and Ethan appeared with a story that rivaled my forgotten ticket. Earlier that morning they were in the queue for the other major festival on the other side of Victoria, realizing that everybody from our university group was going to Phillip Island, they turned around. They didn’t have tickets to our festival so they parked at the nearby beach and scaled the cliffs to the campground. While they lacked the wristbands, surprisingly not once during the festival were they pulled up by security.

After smoking several joints we went to the stage area to see the bands. It was dark by this stage and we were all tipsy and stoned. My current favorite band, the Cat Empire was playing, so I joined the crowed at the main stage. When they finished I emerged alone and unsuccessfully looked for my friends, hungry and lonesome I went for a kebab.

Kebab in hand I looked for a table to devour my juicy, garlicky-lamb deliciousness. All the tables were all full, except for one with a pretty young girl sitting alone, perfect. I asked if I could sit down, she replied yes so I sat and stared, as neat as one can, to eat my kebab. The girl stared at me, and then asked if she could have a bite. “Yeah sure”, so I handed it over. Shen then went to take the largest bite I have ever seen, she practically deepthroated it. I asked her if she was hungry. She told me that she was starving and didn’t have any cash. I gave her some money to buy one, she returned with a friend and they shared the kebab. They told me that their boyfriends had deserted them. I finished my kebab, told the girls that their boyfriends were jerks and went off to look for single girls.

The bands had finished so I decided to walk back to my campsite, on the way I sparked up conservation with a group of punters. 10 minutes later I was in some girl’s tent and we started making out. She stopped, pulled out her mobile and showed me a picture of her 2 year old child. I pretended to care and went back to making out. A minute later one of her friends called out her name, she got out of the tent to talk to her friend. The talk quickly turned into yelling, so I decided to leave.

Because I had been distracted by the angry mum, I had lost my bearings in regards to my campsite. I looked for the flags. However, it was too dark to see any, I was lost. I wandered around trying to find familiar cars and landmarks that would aid my journey to the campsite, but it was useless. Instead I found a group of punters still up smoking joints, so not doing myself any favors I joined in. Now I was exceedingly stoned and completely lost.

I found another group of about 10 punters and told them I was lost and just wanted a seat. They politely let me join in on their circle of chairs. After I sat down I realized that I was the only one in the circle with a penis. One girl broke the ice by informing me that they knew my doppelganger. My instant response was “He must be a handsome man.” Her response was, that the girl sitting next to me had “fucked him”. I then told the doppelganger-fucker next to me that she had excellent taste. A few minutes later we were kissing. One of the girls got up to go to the toilet and asked doppelganger-fucker to join. Realizing the game was probably over, I left.

I kept circling the area where I thought my campsite could be. Some nice guys even let me stand on the roof of their Van, but it was far too dark to see anything clearly. In addition to being stoned and tired, the night started getting cold. All I wanted was somewhere warm to sleep. So in sheer desperation, I ripped down a campsite banner, rolled myself up like a cartoon character in a rug and slept peacefully in the middle of a field.

In the morning light I found my campsite. It was less than 20 meters away from the van that I stood on. While that night was a little chilly the day was the extreme opposite, reaching 42 °C. To combat the heat and to rest for the big night ahead I spent a fair portion of the day stoned lying under our makeshift tarp. I also finally erected my tent.

Sheltering from the sun at basecamp. Our urination spot was between the blue and red station wagons.

Lathering myself in sunscreen, we braved the sun to watch the late afternoon bands. In the middle of Little Birdie, Kevin disappeared and reappeared 10 minutes later with two bags of ice. Fucking brilliant idea, we danced with the bags of ice on our heads, keeping us cool. Waiting for the next act we sat on the ice bags, cooling our plums. The next act was Josh Pike and the crowd started to build. The obligatory giant beach ball was bouncing around. When it landed in fount of us, Aaron grabbed it with both hands and gave it an almighty kick. Instead of going up, it went straight into a very pretty girls face. He embarrassingly apologized and she was fine. Then the human towers started to form. Some muscular guys near us, all shirtless and void of chest hair were attempting the four-stacker. The smallest got on the next biggest shoulders, then the next biggest got underneath and pushed up with two on his shoulders. The Massive fourth guy just couldn’t manage getting three on his shoulders. Wanting to join in on the fun I stood on Mark’s tall shoulders. Then out of nowhere a motley, unisex group pulled off the four-stacker. Between songs, Josh Pike suggested that it could get messy. Then Ethan suggested that I stand on Mark’s shoulders naked. I quickly stripped off as Mark crouched down in readiness, I placed my feet on Marks shoulders. I held his hands for support as he stood up. Standing naked above the crowd I held out my arms for balance, the crowd cheered and I looked down. My dick was smaller and more shriveled than usual from sitting on the bag of ice, Fuck. I lost my balance and hopped off mats shoulders. I tucked my tackle between my legs to hide my shame as I put my clothes back on. It was 42 °C and I had exposed my shrinkage to a few thousands punters.

That night as one of the headliners played we were back in the crowed, Mark and Ethan who were both big guys took it in turns to sit (clothed) on each other’s shoulders. I suggested to Kevin and Aaron that they could get on my shoulders, unsure if I was strong enough they both declined. Behind us was a group of three punters, a guy and a girl holding hands and a petite brunette who appeared to be third-wheeling. I asked the small third-wheel if she wanted to get on my shoulders, enthusiastically she agreed and hopped up. When the set finished she got down and we exchanged names and she asked me if I wanted a beer? Hell yeah, so Kala and I went and got a beer and sat down. It was not long before we started to making out. When we finished our beers I suggested that we go back to the tents. Kala agreed and we decided mine was best because her cheap airbed had deflated.

When we finished “bringing in the new year” in my tent, Kala proposed that we go back and watch the rest of the bands. So we made our way back to the stage area, sat on the grass and watched the last band. I remembered that I still had one pill left and suggested that we split it. Kala disliked the idea as she disliked the MDMA. However, she told me that she would love a joint. The next person to walk buy was a guy in his early thirties, I asked if he wanted to buy a pill. I was in luck, he did. He didn’t quite trust me so he took it straight away and told me that he was going to wait with us until it kicked in, just in case I had sold him a dud. While he was waiting he pulled out a joint, lit it and passed it over to us. Sometimes shit really does work out.

Summer Is Hot, Breaking Your Necks Not

The titanium pins and plate that will forever hold my spine together.

The titanium pins and plate that will forever hold my spine together.

When I was a teenager I broke my neck attempting a somersault, whilst mooning my friends at the beach. Fortunately I made a great recovery. However, I was ridiculously close to becoming a quadriplegic.

On a warm February day in 2000, whilst my school mates were at the beach, I was stuck at my less than normal after school job. I was a cleaner in a dental laboratory. So while my friends were swimming and negotiating sand in their cracks I was sweeping up remnants of false teeth off the floor and scrubbing the dunnies. I came prepared to work that day by bringing my skateboard and my beach gear. Fortunately, one of the apprentice dental technicians was also heading to the beach. So come knock off time he gave me a lift, via picking up one of his mates on the way.

When we pulled into the beach car park I bumped into a couple of female friends, one who I happened to have a crush on. Disappointingly they were just leaving. Hitting the sand I parted with my college and his mate to join my school friends at our regular spot that we gathered every summer. After dumping my things, still excited from bumping into my crush, and desperately wanting to swim in the bay after a long day at school and work I made a dash for the water. The tide was high and there was a ledge of about a foot from the sand into the shallow water, as I often did I attempted a forward somersault into the water. To my surprise and a handful of observers surprise, I landed the somersault on my feet! I had attempted this feat dozens of times and never once landed it.

My friends that witnessed the somersault were impressed and my other friends wanted to see it too. So I attempted it again, and again to no avail. By this time all my friends, numbering about a dozen were all on the beach egging my on. Now with all the attention and not wanting to disappoint, I tried another maneuver. This time as I jumped I mooned my friends, exposing my bare white ass the beach. Not really thinking it through, as I landed my hands were still holding my board shorts and my head penetrated the shallow water my head hit the sand hard. I got straight back up onto my feet, my neck felt jarred and a bit tender. I slowly walked back up the beach towards my friends them BAM! My best friend thought it would be funny to rugby tackle me to the ground, because that’s the kind of stupid shit we did back then. Getting back up, I told him that my neck was sore and he apologized and we sat down with our friends and I tried to shake off the pain.

Ironically, during the previous school year most of us that were there, including me had done our bronze swimming medallion together. We were all well trained on how to rescue drowning people and how to deal with spinal injuries. Not realizing the severity of my injury I shook off the pain and told my moderately concerned friends that I was fine. After about 15 or 20 minutes the pain was getting worse, so I decided to go home. My colleague was in the water with his mate and my friends were all too young to drive so I made the journey solo and on foot.

The trek home was a little less than two kilometers and I had my skateboard. However, the pain was getting worse. I tried to skateboard but my neck was too uncomfortable so I painfully walked. As I passed a phone booth (this is before all teenagers had mobile phones), I considered calling home for a lift. Stupidly I thought that if I could walk all the way home it couldn’t be that bad, so I soldiered on. Reaching home and in a fair amount of pain, I told my mum what happened. Naively I suggested to her that I should see somebody, like a Chiropractor. Blessed mum called the local Chiro, they were just able to squeeze me in the last slot of the day. I had a lay down on the couch for the half hour before mum drove me to the appointment.

The Chiropractor didn’t want to touch it without an x-ray. So she x-rayed it and revealed that I had a fracture. Realizing that the injury was far beyond what she could treat, she instructed us to go straight to hospital (I later found out that she was heavily criticized for not calling an ambulance). My mum understood the severity of the injury and drove me very carefully to my local emergency department.

The emergency department was not an unfamiliar place to me, nor my poor mother as I was a fairly accident prone teenager. My mum pointed out that the waiting time displayed on the notice board was 5 hours, then mentioned that it was going to be a late evening of waiting in emergency. After a couple of minutes waiting the triage nurse was able to see us, my mum told her that I had a fracture of the C5 vertebrae. The middle aged nurse gave us an odd look, almost that of ignorance towards my mother’s diagnoses. My mum handed her a copy of the chiropractors x-rays. The nurse then casually took my details and strolled away. After about a minute the triage nurse rushed back, accompanied by a team of medical staff. They carefully strapped a neck brace on me and ever so carefully placed me on a hospital bed. They must have seen the x-ray and realized the severity of the injury.

Whilst getting wheeled through the hospital, lying on my back with only a view of the ceilings, I asked if I could still go surfing on the weekend, as I had a planned to go down the cost with my older brother. The guy pushing the bed looked at me in disbelief and informed me that it could be a while before I could surf again. This was the moment when the penny dropped and I realized that I had really fucked my neck.

I was x-rayed again and placed in intensive care. I was examined by several doctors and nurses. Several used needles to prick strategic places over my body to see if I still had feeling. The most poignant question everybody asked was to do with feeling in my legs and feet. This is because of the seriousness of the fracture. My fractured C5 vertebrae was millimeters from damaging my spinal cord and rendering me a quadriplegic.

As I was in a small hospital in the suburbs, that night I was transferred to a larger hospital that was better equipped to deal with my injury. For the transfer, I was carefully transferred to a stretcher board by a large team, who then strapped me down, almost like I was about to be airlifted out of a gorge. At the start of the ambulance trip one of the paramedics asked me if I had an erection. I very awkwardly replied ‘no’, he went on telling me that sometimes in spinal injuries dudes get an erection. I was a less than two weeks shy of my 16th birthday and uncomfortable talking to strangers about erections (for the record I was flaccid). I didn’t realize at the time that the paramedics were doing a munificent job of keeping my mind off the current situation that I was in.

Several months later, my parents received a letter from our insurance company stating that ‘next time we required an ambulance, they needed at least 24 hours’ notice’. Yeah sure thing, who doesn’t know 24 hours in advance when they may need an ambulance?Wankers!

In the larger hospital I spent the remainder of the night in intensive care, before being placed in the regular ward the next day. To prevent my vertebrae from moving closer to my spinal cord I had to lie flat on my back, without a pillow and with sandbags placed on either side of my head. Because they were too scared to move me, I was still wearing my beach gear for the first few days. When they did remove my still-sandy bathers and top, my main concern was not for my spine, it was for integrity of my designer singlet. Lying in bed also made it difficult to go to the toilet so they also put in a catheter. Yep, they shoved a tube up my pee hole. I will get to number 2’s later.

I was closely monitored with x-rays and CT scans as my fractured vertebrae was unstable and the risk if becoming a quadriplegic was high. Even the slightest bump could render me a quadriplegic for life. The only reason that I survived my friends’ rugby tackle and the walk home was that after the injury my neck muscles spasmed and somehow held the vertebrae together.

Five days after the accident they decided to operate. For the operation they first scraped some bone from my hip, they mushed this bone up to create a cement-like paste to replace my broken C5 vertebrae. They then went on to fuse three vertebrae together with titanium screws in my C4 and C6 vertebrae and a titanium plate to hold the three vertebrae together.

The recovery from the operation was rough. The muscles around the hip are strong and sensitive and they were cut to get to my hip. Because of this, while I was now allowed to move freely as my spine was stabilized it was too painful to even stand at first. Additionally my neck was swollen to the extent that I couldn’t eat, I kept trying to swallow. The food would go down my throat a centimeter or so and just come back up. A few days after the operation I was able to walk assisted to the bathroom for a wash, I was shocked with my appearance. I didn’t realize the amount of weight that has lost from being unable to eat. I was already a scrawny teenager, now I was so skinny looked as though I had been in a POW camp.

Because I was up and about they took out my catheter. As my bladder started to fill I tried to use the piss bottle. I’m still unsure if it was stage fright or my body dealing with lying down for over a week with a catheter, but I just couldn’t pee. My bladder was getting fuller and fuller and I just couldn’t pee. To this day it is probably the worst pain that I have ever experienced. It felt like my bladder was going to burst. I was in so much pain that I was yelling and swearing. The nurses gave me Valium to calm me down and because I was in the children’s ward they told me to stop swearing. My doctor was unavailable and they didn’t want to put a new catheter in without his consent. Fortunately another doctor overheard my screams of pain and to my much needed relief was able to put in another catheter.

Fortunately, as well as my family I had lots of friends visiting. This helped to break up the long boring days of staring at the ceiling and listening to my Discman. On my birthday my best friend, the same one who rugby tackled me came in with his family. He had chipped in with a few of my friends to buy me a scooter. While it would be a little while before I could ride it I was stoked as I had had my eye on it for a while. It was a unique push scooter with a seat and this was just before the razor scooter fad when retro scoots were surprisingly cool.

After being in the hospital for about ten days and 5 days after the operation, I was making a great recovery. I was walking around the ward and partaking in the arts and crafts with the long term patients, which comprised mostly of wafer thin teenage girls with eating disorders. Considering my current weight, if it was not for my neck brace strangers would probably assume I too had an eating disorder. Fortunately, my swollen throat had eased and I was able to eat mushed food. The only thing stopping me now from going home was my bowel movements. I had not pooped since the accident.

To aid the emptying of my bowels, I was first fed an oral laxative, it did nothing. The next step was a laxative suppository. While it really was not very comfortable having a nurse squeeze gel into your anus, by this stage I was over modesty. When you go into hospital you leave your dignity at the door. The suppository worked and after a personal record of 12 days without taking a dump I experienced the closest thing to childbirth.

I spent a total of two weeks in hospital, the day after I was released I was back at school. Not because I was eager to learn, but because I was a teenager and I felt as though I was missing out on a social life. However, I was quite the eyesore wearing the neck brace known as a Philadelphia collar. Everywhere I went I would get stares. When pretty girls looked at me, my initial reaction was that they were checking me out. Really they were staring at my neck brace.

That scooter my friends gave me ended up being rather handy. While my neck was relatively stable, I still had to wear a neck brace for six weeks and I couldn’t partake in contact sports for a year. I was fine with that because I didn’t play any contact sports anyway. However, I did Skateboard and because of the nature of the activity I couldn’t do it for a year. This for me was one of the single worst parts of the recovering process. I loved skateboarding, it was my favorite hobby and it consumed most of my spare time. So I just rode my new scooter instead, it also help build back up the mussels I used skateboarding.

Everybody told my how lucky I was, I was sick of hearing it. I just wanted to get back to skateboarding and perusing girls like every other teenager. The only long term effect it had is a loss of about 10% movement in my neck. This makes it hard to look over my shoulder, especially annoying when reversing a car. I also cannot touch my chin to my chest and find it difficult to look up at tall buildings and things in the sky. It does get stiff sometimes because losing two joints puts more strain on the other joins, but hey I can deal with it because it beats the hell out of being a quadriplegic. And no I don’t set metal detectors off at the airport. Titanium is too light to trigger the sensors.

Have you seen my pants?

Back in school it was hilarious when somebody got dakked. Well hilarious to everybody except for the dakker. Such was my fear that I wore both boxers and jocks to school, in a measure to prevent my ginger-tinged pubes from being revealed to the world for ridicule. Imaging if that dackking lasted all day, yeah that would be shit. Well it actually happened.

In primary school some people dreaded mandatory swimming lessons like herpes, other like me loved them. Except for one day, that has a particular place in my memory. I think I was in grade 3, or maybe grade 4. Anyway it was primary school and whist it could have been an exceptionally shit day for me. Instead I made it an exceptionally shit day for another schoolyard chump. It was either me or him and nobody wanted to be that kid.

It was back in the mid 90’s and my class was finishing up our swimming lesson in the 25 meter cesspool that was out local indoor swimming center. As the other class emerged from the change room and started getting in the water as my class got out of the pool.

Back in the change room where I left my schoolbag and pile of clothes, as I was getting changed I realised a vital piece of clothing was missing. Some asshole has stolen my pants, yeah my fucking pants. It is not really something that I could misplace. Embarrassed as hell, I looked around the change room for my green tracksuit pants, all the time trying not to look like a fool who was missing their pants.

My entire class were dressed and waiting for the buss to take them back to school and I was alone in the change room. The clothes from the other class were lying in small individual piles on the blue benches. In a moment of sheer desperation, I grabbed the closest pants and threw them on. The standard issue green tracksuit pants fitted perfectly, the only difference between my newfound pants and my missing pair was they had patches on the knees and my absent pants did not. This was a minor distinguishing detail, I didn’t care I had pants and my schoolyard credibility was upheld.

At lunchtime, feeling slightly uneasy in my new found pants I was playing on the play equipment when I was called over by one of my fellow schoolyard chums. My heart dropped, the poor dude was wearing a white towel around his waist and I was wearing his pants. I thought the patches on the knees would give me up for sure. Knowing that I also had swimming lessons that morning he politely asked if I had seen his pants. Doing my best to hide my vanity of a pants wearer, I replied “no” and to secure my lie, I went on to enquire about what happened to mask my theft.

After that awkward conservation with my towel wearing classmate, I avoided the pants-less boy for the rest of the day. I couldn’t imagine the humiliation that he must of felt wearing a towel at school for the remainder of the day, it certainly would have shattered any schoolyard cred he had.

Somehow my mum didn’t recognise the foreign trousers and they integrated into my wardrobe. Yeah, that was mean of me to steel that poor unsuspecting kids dacks, but it was fucking harsh of the unidentified asshole that stole my pants. I felt horrible about what I did, but it was either him or me and nobody wanted to be that kid.