This is going to be all over the place, so do try and bear with me.
I went in for some hospital tests last week and had to book Thursday off work to do so.
This came about as a ... well lets say friend ... of mine text me to say that he has been treated for a rather nasty disease that due to some of our shenanigans together earlier in the year, he may have passed to me/we may have caught from the same person/I already had it and passed it to him ... or some such combination thereof. Now, given I haven't in seen him in person since ... um ... March I think, let alone any headboard banging activities, and I had had no symptoms, and neither had Dan (or any of the other guys I have been with since) I thought I was relatively safe on the contracting anything part but thought its been a while since I went for an MOT, so bit the bullet (well, was my thumb as they were taking the bloods) and went down.
The clinic at Cardiff Royal Infirmary works on a walk in basis only for your first call. And its only Thursday mornings. And its so busy, that despite opening at 8.40, if you aren't there by 7.30, you get turned away as the queue is already too long. So I took the chance of the day off to book my car in for new brakes while I was at it. This meant I dropped the car at Three Arches Services just before 7.00, got the train 7.05 to Queen Street from Heath High Level and walked up from there. Of course, regular Doctor Who readers will know the Infirmary as Albion Hospital...
I had taken a book, got in, got my number, had my assessment for what tests I needed with a fab nurse called Karen, who really out me at ease and made me laugh - a lot.
They allocate you a number, and to protect identities, call you by that number. This would be great of they didn't have one particular doc who then greets you by your name when you walk up to him in such a loud voice, that the entire waiting room hears him. Luckily, Karen was way more discreet.
So we had a chat. I needed the full monty. And apparently, symptoms don't have to be a scabby cock... it can be a tiny little red sore in the throat .... so i may have had syphilis for months and not known. I get the results tomorrow ... but back to the tests..... throat swab. Seriously, I had no idea I could be so violent. They use a 12 inch cotton bud thing. I gagged. Hard. And also my arms flew up out of nowhere and pushed her away. i was amazed at myself frankly. I then had to drop my kecks and lay down for them to check my bollocks for signs of testicular cancer - none found and they even taught me to do it properly myself. Same hand movement as your mum uses to make crumble apparently. Thought not as hard I assume. Then came the one that .. well .. made me yell so loud that everyone in the waiting area gave me a very funny look when I went back out. The urethra swab. Yep, they stick a plastic cocktail stick down your japs eye. It lasts about half a second and stings like buggery. Well, not like buggery, that's quite fun and what got me into this mess in the first place. I think the yell was more from shock than pain as really, it doesn't hurt like you think it will and aside from leaving you the sensation like you really really really REALLY have to piss, is gone as quick as it happened. Next was arse swab. Cotton bud up the bum. Without being too gross, quite used to things going up there that are a fucking hell of a lot bigger, so didn't worry about this one. Then found out how awkward it feels sans lube. Not pain .. just wrong. This left only one thing. The main reason I put shit like this off. The reason I usually only go for these kinds of checks every few years. The vampires were coming.
Now honestly. Its 2007. Why in all that is holy in the name of our Lady Kylie, can somebody not have invented a better way of testing you for shit in the body than sticking a cold metal sharp painful needle in that feels like its the circumference of the fucking Blackwall tunnel? I mean really? Previous attempts to pull bloods have resulted in nausea, vomiting and in one case going backwards off a chair out cold and needing further medical attention due to concussion.
However, these days, you don't sit in a chair. Oh no! You have a lovely bed to lie on with .. and get this ... little poseable arm rests ..... so you can totally relax. And by totally relax clearly I mean lay there in state of utter panic, biting your thumb on your right hand while they tourniquet your left arms and jab it with the needle, stare at a small blob of artex in the very grey ceiling and talk utter shit to the poor nurse who has been assigned the job of sucking blood from your arm like one of The Lost Boys. And it was over in about ... ooh ... 30 seconds. Longest 30 seconds of my life I tell you. But the telling part of how much of this is actually all in my head. I asked her how much longer ... way after she had actually taken the needle out! Quick chat with a health advisor - who asked what my reaction to a result of HIV+ would be. I told her, I didn't see it needed a reaction, aside from 'oh god more fucking needles' and she was well pleased. Apparently most people in Cardiff think that HIV+ means you are going to die in a few months. Clearly, like most of the clothes they wear, the people of the valleys really are stuck in 1984.
And Dan has still to go through this.
So I wandered off into town after, as I was meeting my friend Peter for lunch. Popped by Dans office and said hi, bought him present(s) for Christmas, met Peter, had pizza, walked up to pick up the car, and found that they hadn't done it. It was going to be over 300 quid. I had about 350 left for the entire month. Since I had already had vague convos with them about changing voiture in the new year, they decided it was more honest to not take my money for the brakes and to just sort out a new car there and then. So we did! The Protonator has gone to find a new home, probably with someone who will appreciate her sporty boy racer values much more than i did, and now I am the proud owner of a 56 plate Citroen C1 Vibe. In bright yellow! I'll bung the photo at the end of the post. Looks tiny, actually has shit loads of room, ergo we are calling her the Tardis. Bigger on the inside than looks on the out, for the non Who fans reading.
So that was Thursday.
Friday, (also day off as just thought be nice to make a long weekend out of it) I finally got around to going along to the school where my dear mate Russ is headmaster. Its a special high school, so caters for kids 11 - 19 with severe learning disabilities. Now, i am world famous for making an utter arse of myself around the physically and mentally challenged. But being at the school was amazing. Didn't make a twat of myself once .. to my knowledge. But I am still in awe of the people working with the kids. That's more than just a job, its a way of life. And then, sat back in Russ' office while he and Kay chatted about a family whom they both teach, that it struck me. I spend my day coming up with all these brilliant ads, fabulous ideas and hilarious scripts - but to what end? What am I providing the world? Sure, once in a while a client uses a creative ad rather than an announcer just telling you who they are, what they do and why you should go to them for it, and maybe that raises a smile somewhere .. but really, I'm not changing anyone's life am I? And then I started thinking about why I trained to be an actor/writer/director. Because of the power that has to make a difference to somebody. Make people laugh, cry, think. Make a difference. And maybe my skills could be put to working with kids like these. Improving the quality of homebody's life - how fucking great is that? So I am researching it. Seeing how I can maybe be one of those people who makes a difference.
Then the weekend ... um .. cant quite remember the weekend aside from seeing Beowulf in 3D, which is good but it was blatantly made with the 3d in mind, so is prolly a bit shit in 2d.
And now we have confirmation Rose is coming back to Doctor Who. Whoopie doo. It pissed me off that the Doctor spent all of series 3 pining for her .... I was happy for her to stay put. I have my reservations but put my trust in the team just up river from where I am sat and will wait and see.
And finally ...*shuffles papers* ... Star Wars Lego. Was round Ade & Matt's for the evening last night and was playing this on the PS3. Its universally renowned that I am shit at gaming. But imagine my joy when I discovered I can make the characters leap around the room with their hands in the air like twinks at G-A-Y.