Wednesday, July 9, 2008

the "scotch tape test" for itchy bums

pollen allergies have a designated season. it would appear that the residential house i supervise is also on a bi-annual (fungal) schedule; we have ringworm-- again. at the time of typing i have not exhibited any of the symptoms, but this is probably because i have been more pre-occupied with harvesting the deep craters left by some ticks after a mountain bike ride a few weeks ago.

as we are all on ringworm hyper-alert, there is much ruling out of other afflictions, such as pinworm. for those of you not yet in possession of children- or cant remember being one with a persistently itchy bottom- pinworms are quite the fascinating little blighters, as long as they are not taking up residence in your colon. they begin their brief, but unremitting, life cycle in the intestines- which serves as the honeymoon suite for copulating pinworms. coitus, apparently proves all too much for the male, who promptly kicks the bucket, while his expectant paramour heads south to nestle in the grooves of your sphincter and deposit around 20,000 eggs for you to host for a mere 45 days. upon maturation, the post-adolescent critters come out for a spot of "fresh air", however this only occurs at night, as even pinworms are subject to circadian rhythms.

fortunately, the diagnosis is simple and does not require any overpriced merchandise from walgreens.

torch (low wattage is sufficient)
sello-tape (3M has better adhesive, although you can go with whatever's on sale as long as it's not double sided)

~ after the sun has gone down, remove your knickers- relatively easy, as most of us with good hygiene practices, or some semblance of a love life, are familiar with this ritual.
~ shine a light at your bum hole and apply a piece of tape to the area- sadly, more people than you would think are all too familiar with this ritual, more than the aforementioned one.
~ remove the tape- fast or slow, depending on your personal preference (remember to check for haemherroids beforehand so as to avoid unecessary mess), and any pinworm egg larvae will be affixed to the tape for your viewing pleasure.
~ now you can call your doctor with complete authority, and confidently request an appointment to "show and tell" your harvest while procuring a prescription for a bottle of overpriced medication.

here's the good news for the antibacterial hand sanitizing brigade: pinworm is transmitted by and through; nailbiting, handshaking, door knobs, toilet seats, phone receivers, keyboards, kitchen counters, desk surfaces, supermarket trolley handles, bedding, towels, clothing, toilets, glasses, bathroom fixtures, toys, sand boxes and food. what a relief to know that pinworm doesn't cause any damage to the body-- aside from chronic sleeplessness associated with nocturnal anal itching.


ruth said...

This post reminds me of something Andy and I have been discussing lately. Our love of BBC programing has forced us to take note of the fact that even the most sophisticated British shows entertain scatological and all manner of crude biological humor. Example - we just watched a sweet movie called "A Cock and Bull Story"". Result: two American prudes not-so-much enjoying the whole adult sized uterus contraption.

On the contrary, have you noticed how in U.S. cinema, the biological humor is usually regulated to the dumb/bad movies?

I'm just amazed that with British humor, you could have a perfectly brilliant masterpiece and all of a sudden, along comes a dirty (chocolate pudding dirty) diaper (nappy?).

Enough from me, I'm going to scratch my bum.

mansuetude said...

your title splurts coffee all over here.

Ruth is right, British humor (and gore) vs the American blow up cars... we need more of the Faulty Towers of BBC. Have you ever watched Ab Fab? I used to love that.

Scotch tape should come with any job offers to employees at your job--this post should be included in the job description.

mansuetude said...

ps: if they hide behind the sewer cover of the sphincter (sp) muscle. How do they know it is nightime? Do thy have little alarm clock wrist watches?

Jill/Twipply Skwood said...

Ick! Well, I'm glad to know how to tell the difference between pinworm and plain itchy butt now!

I remember one year I had a little boy with ringworm. For some reason I remember holding his hand, walking down the hallway, wondering if I was going to catch it because he had it on the back of his hand.

Disa said...

yes, when im here i get called out on my obsession with bodily functions, when im with my family i feel "normal", when americans have seen me with my family they think we're all obsessed, so i think youre right on about the cultural diff in movies.

im curious how pinworms "know" when its dark outside, i wouldnt imagine they had a whole lot of things to contemplate in there...

mansuetude said...

i know.
ways to make me itcy.
that is what they contemplate.
i am so itchy.
they are good at it.
you r there publicist.:)

Disa said...

holy cow- i missed my calling working on the preparation h design/PR team! and yes, i have seen Ab Fab, i think the americans were going to try and do their version of it, but i dont know that it would "translate" quite as well as 'the office' did.