Monday, October 22, 2007
The term "running the bowel" is one I've used before. Not to be confused with this, it refers to the process of inspecting the intestine from one end to the other, looking for trouble. Often it's done by pulling the bowel with one hand, through the gently closed fingers of the other. As the bowel is slippery-moist, it glides greasily over rubber gloves. Sometimes it slips the grip, requiring starting over nearly at the top, since the whorled loops retract gloppily into a pile, in a way that erases traces of where one was, quickly. It's very slithery.
While performing the task on one occasion, on a person whose background was justifiably in question -- the less-than-innocent victim of a sharp object or missile of some sort -- my fingers found a circular object within the man's gut, the size and texture of which made me think it was a condom. Or possibly a balloon. My conclusion was that the punctured person was a drug-runner, since ingesting condoms and balloons filled with heroin is a known way of crossing borders (and an explanation of why so many addicts got such horrendous infections where they ultimately injected the stuff, after the, uh, passage of, uh, time).
My next conclusion was that it was time to release the bowel, which I did with a notably unprofessional and sissified shriek and a rapid and uncontrolled unclenching of my grip and yanking away of my hand, arm and much of the rest of myself, as the "condom" unfurled and wiggled under my fingers. "YEAHHGGGGUHH!!!" The startled crew jumped in unison in response to a likely unprecedented display of wimpishness. But that's what worms'll do to you (to me, anyway) when they show up unexpected.