Updates from September, 2011 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • nbrightside 11:16 am on September 30, 2011 Permalink | Reply  

    fortunate timing 

    When I was prescribed antibiotics (metronidazole), the doctor warned me not to combine these pills with alcohol as the side effects would be rather severe. I had no problem heeding this advice as I was pleased to note that the 7 day course ended on Tuesday 23 August which was 24 hours before I was meeting up with an old friend visiting the UK all the way from Perth together with a couple of other good friends from college days.

    As a result of my presence on identi.ca, I also invited another Australian chap who also happened to be in London attending DrupalCon. Rather than board a bus with 120 Drupal technical nerds to discuss an ‘overhaul of the node structure in Drupal 8’, this gentleman preferred a night supping real ale in a traditional London hostelry followed by the great English tradition – a curry.

    Ruben Hillier – we salute you !

    It was a fun night. One of my mates was completely flummoxed when I aired my perennial conversation stopper of ‘Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a woman ?’. As he recoiled from this shock, he was then stupefied to hear I had recorded a podcast that was not actually a podcast.

    A few pints with some old mates and one new one followed by a curry. A very enjoyable evening.

    The following night was also good fun as my wife had just completed a degree in District Nursing at South Bank University and invited her fellow students and nursing colleagues to our house for a barbecue. I endeavored to cook, dish up the food and tidy up so my wife could relax and enjoy her evening with all her friends as it was her celebration after all.

    At the time, I didn’t attach any particular significance to these two social events being sandwiched between a no alcohol ban and my appointment with the consultant.

    • Ruben H 11:25 pm on October 4, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      That has to be the first time anybody has referred to me as a gentleman, thank you madam.
      It was a fantastic night out and I’m very grateful you invited me along. If you should ever make it to my obscure corner of the world I hope to show you an equally good time. The offer of the holiday flat on the beach still stands by the way, even though I was pissed as a fart.

      In fact I’d go as far to say, it was such an entertaining night out, that it was more than worth me foolishly ignoring your advice and missing the last train back to Croydon. The night bus driver got into splendid tiff with an angry young man and refused to drive any further, leaving me to walk from Crystal Palace to Croydon. Which gave me some time to catch up on TINAP and other assorted podcasts. I finally stumbled into my hotel just in time for a shower before heading back to the DrupalCon.

      Life is there to be lived after all.

  • nbrightside 10:41 am on September 30, 2011 Permalink | Reply  

    GP visit 

    After the explosion of the abscess and ‘stench of death’, I duly returned to visit my doctor on Wednesday 17 August.

    As I entered the consulting room, he introduced a young lady who is a registrar from Kingston hospital, who was learning about the range of health issues patients come along to a GP surgery with.

    This time, he was sufficiently concerned and interested to actually examine me. I gingerly hopped up onto the couch, facing the wall, lowered my trousers and boxer shorts and heard the doctor don the plastic gloves.

    He asked me to raise my legs up towards my tummy and gently examined me and concluded: ‘Yes – you have two visible hemorrhoids and I can see the infection that is still draining’.

    I quickly got dressed again and noted the female registrar had declined the opportunity to gaze intently at my fat, hairy backside. Maybe she’d recently consumed her breakfast.

    ‘Right – so I will give you some antibiotics that will clear this infection up and I’ll also send you to see Mr. Fawcett who is an anorectal specialist at Kingston hospital’.

    As I watched him type the referral letter, I joked about whether anyone dreamt of a career as an ‘anorectal specialist’ as a young person.

    I returned home, shelled out £7.50 for the weeks course of antibiotics and was quite relieved I had got the referral so someone could sort this problem out once and for all.

  • nbrightside 5:06 pm on September 23, 2011 Permalink | Reply  


    In July 2011 (maybe earlier), I experienced some discomfort going to the toilet.

    Occasionally, I would pass small amounts of blood (‘spotting’) in my stools and rarely, just once or twice, would pass dark red blood.

    As I had suffered similar symptoms when I had hemorrhoids over 10 years ago, I applied some Anusol cream to my delicate backside and hoped it would clear up.

    However, the pain didn’t subside so I dragged myself to my GP who listened to my self diagnosis and self medication, told me that 80% of people suffer from hemorrhoids and some suppositories should help to resolve this little problem.

    So, in addition to gently applying cream to my tender backside, I now found myself shoving small, torpedo shaped pellets up inside my anus. This was a weird sensation as, initially, the body tries to reject the foreign body until you push a little further until it is finally, reluctantly accepted.

    10 days of this nightly procedure changed nothing. In fact, the pain in my backside got worse despite the Naproxen painkillers I was already taking for my ongoing problems with my back.

    One night, after my bath and towelling down, the pain was so bad I just had to lay down on the bed. I consider I have a fairly high pain threshold and placed this at level 8/10 on the pain scale. In fact, I was perilously close to going up to Accident & Emergency at the local hospital.

    Anyway, thankfully, I pulled round and managed to go downstairs to watch TV and preserve some semblance of normality.

    My wife (a nurse) remarked on a strange smell – ‘not like a fart, not sweaty – just a weird stench when you entered the room’. As I could also smell the strange odour, I immediately christened it the ‘stench of death’.

    When I rose from the sofa, I noticed a damp patch on the cushion, I’d been sitting on – ‘Oh dear – I seem to be leaking’.

    Suddenly, I felt as if someone had pierced the largest, reddest, angriest, septic boil on my bottom with a sharp, hot needle. The relief was almost overwhelming as the pain slowly subsided and my wife went to put the cushion cover into the wash and get more painkillers.

    As I lay recovering on the sofa, in my dressing gown, my 19 year old daughter returned home and tonight of all nights, chose to spontaneously introduce her new boyfriend of 3 months to her Mum and Dad for the first time.

    Quite what George made of a grown man, laid horizontally in his dressing gown at 08:45 surrounded by the ‘stench of death’ is not entirely clear.

    After this worrying episode, I decided to get an appointment with my GP the next day.

    • Ed Morgan 5:28 pm on September 23, 2011 Permalink | Reply


      What to write without sounding like a cliché?

      I’m struggling to think of anything, so you’ll have to make do with this:

      Missed having a beer with you when I met Marsden, so you’ll have to get yourself sorted by the next time I’m in London. Keep your chin up.


    • Scott Evans 6:47 pm on September 23, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      My experience of treatment for T-cell Lymphoma was a time of my life that I would have preferred never to have endured. I didn’t have my own blog at that time, but I’ve written two posts about some of the things that I felt that people should at least be aware of…



      My thoughts are with you and if there’s any way that I can help you during this time don’t hesitate to contact me…

    • susan 8:17 am on May 11, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      Love this post …. did you really call it the stench of death before you got your cancer diagnosis ..

      AND most importantly … I want to know how the relationship with George is going …

    • nbrightside 9:03 am on May 11, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      Hi Suze – Yes every word was true. No rewriting of history or hindsight. Turned out to quite prescient but we honestly didn’t have a clue. And yes, George and my daughter are still an item despite (or maybe because) they are studying at different Universities.

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