I didn’t want to have to write this post, I really didn’t, but what the hell here it is: this month marks the year anniversary of my hypnic twitches. They began on March 12th of 2013 and as of this date (March 22nd 2014) they are still with me. Maybe I should buy myself a cake and celebrate.
When they started I didn’t believe they would stay with me for over a week, a month tops I’d thought. I went five days without sleeping when I finally sought medical help at an urgent care facility. The doctor prescribed Trazadone and it did not work so I went back and she gave me twenty tablets of 2mg Lorazapam. That did work, but the one pill dose stopped working after four nights and then I had to combine one Lorazapam with one Trazadone, one Benadryl, and one 10mg melatonin. After four days on this regimen I was shitting liquid every thirty minutes and realized I needed to see my doctor.
In previous posts I’ve talked about that whole fiasco, my doctor not believing I had REAL symptoms and telling me I was bi-polar and then throwing all kinds of pills at me that didn’t work. In all I saw six doctors (one of them a psychiatrist) until I was able to see a neurologist who finally diagnosed me with exaggerated hypnic twitches. I did a sleep study to the tune of $4500, and when I tallied up all I spent on the whole thing it was well over $10,000 in doctors, pills and lost wages.
The twitches were really bad for the first six months, so strong my limbs would literally fly up of their own accord just as I was falling to sleep. My arm, my leg, my whole body; and once they happen you are wide awake, lying there and thinking ‘what the fuck?!?’ The days of exhaustion that followed were grueling.
Of course when I did the sleep study the twitches went into remission; one thing I’d discovered about this wonderful medical anomaly was that it would go away for varying periods of time. Sometimes for a week, sometimes a month. When I did the sleep study it was in remission so the doctor didn’t prescribe any medication. It came raging back a week later with a vengeance from the grave, seriously, stronger than it had ever been. Then after two weeks it went away again. And went like this over the course of the summer of 2013 until I begged the neurologist for a prescription of Clonazapam, which he granted.
Fortunately for me that worked, and I only took it when I absolutely had to. As of this writing the first bottle of sixty pills (.5 mg tablets) lasted me seven months thanks to the twitches going into remission for up to three weeks at a time at some points.
As of the last two months I have yet to see a remission period like that, in fact have to take it at least twice a week (and am at the point where I am regulating it as such because after the initial prescription and two refills I can’t get more without seeing the neurologist and I have since moved from that city). I have the pills counted out that I can make it almost a year from today (48 days shy of a year) if I take four tablets a week. If the condition persists I will have to see a doctor and try to get another prescription for it.
The silver lining? The twitches have subsided to small spasms of sorts; they are no longer so hardcore, with my legs or arms flying up wildly. They are now little spasms in my shoulders or whole body, leading me to believe that they can eventually go away. But, even though they are reduced in strength, they still keep me awake. Large or small they still cause me to toss and turn as I struggle for that elusive sleep. Another blessing is that I am able to get at least four hours of sleep before they start; generally they come on at the halfway point of the night where they used to start from initial sleep onset and carry on through the morning.
This goes out to anyone suffering from this type of sleeping disorder. May you find some relief from this baffling neurological condition and hopefully you won’t have to persuade some narrow minded doctor that the twitches are real, that they aren’t something that is in your head. Clonazapam is the only thing that has truly worked at keeping these twitches at bay and trust me, I’ve tried a LOT of different medications. Ambien, Lunesta, Lorazapam, Xanax, Remeron, Trazadone, liquid THC, melatonin, Doxylamine, ropinerole, Benadryl…all of those have brought me some relief but none of them truly worked. Sleep is extremely necessary and when you go without it makes for an arduous day.
Category Archives: true stories
Say the word ‘suicide’ and it feels nasty coming out of your mouth. The implications of the word are terrifying, that someone would hate life so much that they would choose to end it. It can’t be so bad, right? I mean, there is nothing in this world so terrible that it would drive someone to that definitive act, one that cannot be taken back no matter how desperately the survivors wish it was so. In a word: no. It happens every day whether we like it or not.
This blog is a eulogy of sorts, I guess, but I am dedicating it to more than one person. The reason I endeavor to do this is because the theme is universal; we all know someone who has taken their own life and we are left in the wake of their passing scratching our heads, wondering why. There is always a reason, although some choose not to expound upon it by leaving the prerequisite note. Sometimes the reason is simply implied, something we gather from extenuating circumstances.
A few days ago a man I knew from my hometown of DePere, Wisconsin, chose to take his own life. I do not know the manner in which he did it, all I know is that the deed was done. He left behind a girlfriend and two foster children and countless friends. I had not seen him for over two decades yet had spoken with him on the phone about sixteen months ago, regarding the passing of one of his dogs. I’d sent out a group message on Facebook advertising the release of my latest novel and when he got it he took it to be personal in nature and messaged me back that he was down because his dog had died. I could commiserate, having worked with animals for the last fifteen years, and told him to call me anytime, leaving him my number. He didn’t call me that day, but did so a few months later and we talked for almost an hour about various things: companion animals, bands, concerts, people we mutually knew, the city we grew up in etc. I felt good about it afterward, that he had reached out to me, even though he and I had never been what could be construed as ‘good’ friends. Mostly, in high school, we rode to school together with another guy who had a car and we took part in illicit activities that bonded us better than words sometimes can. I don’t know much else about him except that we always got along; he was a nice guy, I can honestly say I don’t think he had any enemies. After high school I left that little town for a big city (big in comparison: Milwaukee) and never saw him again. About five years ago we became friends on Facebook and later the above-mentioned correspondence occurred.
He isn’t the only person I know that has committed suicide. A friend (someone I knew much better in high school, a kid I’d played in a band with) killed himself in 2006, for reasons unknown to me. Not that it should come as a surprise; I hadn’t spoken with him since the early 90’s when I ran into him at a bar in Green Bay and the thing I remember about it was him telling me that I was lucky I got out of there, meaning DePere. Small town life shouldn’t be considered a death sentence, but to him it was, I guess. As with this most recent case I have no idea what his method was, only that it happened. So that is why I say that I dedicate this to more than one person, and what the hell I’ll also dedicate it to myself.
I’ve often fantasized about suicide, being of a creative nature and a man who seems to be in a near constant state of ‘finding’ himself. I am a failed musician, a so far failed writer…I have tried and failed a lot of things in my life but sometimes I feel intrinsically that I would succeed at suicide if I ever so choose to take that route. It takes a certain amount of dedication to carry it out though (and a lot of guts to boot, no matter how ‘cowardly’ the act may seem), and so far (fortunately) I lack the courage.
With that said I am glad that I always find a reason not to do it, and I wish these two men had found that reason as well. But, going further down the rabbit hole, maybe they are happier where they are. I don’t believe we should impose our will on others, making them live when they don’t have the strength to. If someone wants to do it than it is their choice, end of story. Of course I agree with the old saying ‘suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem’ but who are we to place sanctions on people’s lives, who are we to judge?
Coinciding with this man’s suicide (coincidentally?) I am presently reading ‘Heavier Than Heaven’ the biography of Kurt Cobain. I’ve had suicide on my mind as of the past week and it is unpleasant that I should encounter it first hand, via someone I once knew. It always hurts much more when you can put a real face on it, when it was someone you laughed and talked and hung out with, no matter how much time has passed since you’ve seen them. The ghostly image of the obituary photo from 2006 still resonates with me; in fact I came across it last week while digging through a box looking for something else. In the photo he is smiling, happy, but the untold story was the darkness in his heart of a future deed he would perpetrate while all along everyone around him probably thought he was fine.
But all that aside, here is to you guys (I am figuratively raising a glass in a toast) and I hope that wherever you are (be it in an ‘afterlife’ or simply in the ground) that you have finally found peace. Amen.
“We do this for tips, you know,” the Jack Nicholson impersonator said to me as I put an arm around him and leaned in close for a snapshot.
“I know,” I replied, handing him a crumpled dollar. And I smiled for the camera, trying my best not to look too drunk. My hosts, a couple of savvy spendthrifts in their own right, were taking me on the budget tour of Vegas, from crummy crack hotels in neighborhoods littered with the refuse of discarded humanity to the towering heights of the Stratosphere in which we gained free entrance to the top to ride the Big Shot, and stopping off at many sorted places in between such as a tattoo parlor boasting $13.00 Friday the Thirteenth themed tattoos and the Belagio for free Mojitos. As my buddy snapped the photo I belched and tasted French fries. At least that was better than tasting vomit.
Our excursion started at four thirty on a Tuesday afternoon when they picked me up at the Las Vegas airport. We proceeded immediately to the aforementioned crack house they were presently occupying (only $195.00 a week!) and drank most of a bottle of vodka while sketching out our plans for the next three days. In a drunken haze we determined we’d mostly wing it, but much to my relief they’d booked a room for two nights at the Circus Circus. As it stood, that first night I’d be sleeping on the floor. The following two nights I’d at least have a bed, even if I didn’t get much sleep in it (not what you think; I am a lousy sleeper).
The next morning was met with a pounding headache and sinuses (thanks to a cold I’d picked up two days before the trip) and in a daze I showered and shaved, anxiously awaiting better digs. I didn’t have to wait long. We checked into the Circus Circus and after dumping off our things we made our way to the lobby floor to hit the slots.
“We never pay for drinks,” Amir told me as we walked out into the mild winter sunshine to hit the Circus Arcade. “You sit at a slot machine, put in a buck, then wave over the waitress for a cocktail. Drinks are free as long as you are gambling.”
The trick for me became how long I could make a dollar last. By winning twenty-five to fifty cents here and there I found I could get about three beers off a buck. And to keep the waitress coming around my friends and I would take turns tipping her. As long as she was making a few frogs it was worth her time.
We whiled away a lot of time doing that, but in between we realized there had to be other activities to make this trip memorable. Since the three of us weren’t exactly what you would call ‘rolling’ we priced out shows until we found one for ten bucks apiece. It was a comedy club in the Riviera, which was perfect because it was right across the street from the Circus Circus. At all costs we did not want to drive, not with how heavily we were drinking. The show was a hoot, presented by two comedians whose names I now forget (I think one of them had the last name ‘Bizarre’, but I could be wrong) in which a drunk girl from the crowd was incorporated to our ensuing hilarity. This chick was either a plant or a total random score for these comedians. After the show we ended the night at the slots, drinking ourselves silly while losing pennies.
The next day we started by walking from the Circus Circus to the Belagio and drinking our way back through the casinos. The photographs accompanying this post adequately show our drunken procession from one end of the strip to the other. Suffice it to say I’ll let them tell the tale. Our walk ended at the Stratosphere where Amir showed us how to get to the top for free and avoid the $18.00 charge: take the elevator that leads to the cocktail lounge (under the guise that that is your intended destination) and when you are let off the elevator just wait a few minutes and then take the stairs up to the top floor to the viewing platform and the rides. We rode the Big Shot (a wonderful contraption that catapults you two hundred feet into the air where you experience zero gravity before it rapidly descends and then hydraulics bounce you up and down a time or two for a giddy extra thrill). Upon its completion we used a coupon on the ticket to get a five-dollar slab of pizza and a large beer. Good times. We then drank our way back to the hotel and I ended the night with a tallboy of Miller High Life purchased for ninety-seven cents at a convenience store.
The next day’s highlights can be summed up as such: 18 holes of mini golf at the official Kiss mini golf course (using a half off coupon it was only six bucks apiece); lunch at the Hard Rock Café (the gambler’s special which is only $7.77) and a tour; a mid-day showing of the latest Hobbit movie in 3D (had trouble staying awake after two nights of lousy booze sleep) and then a $13.00 dollar tattoo from a parlor that just opened (I got Charles Manson and my buddy got $6.66). And in-between all of these shenanigans we did the usual: played slots for free drinks
The last night we spent in the crack hotel, me sleeping on the floor again, but after all the partying I got the best night of sleep I’d had in days. The next morning I awoke refreshed and after serving me pancakes my buddy and his wife took me to the airport where they went the extra mile and accompanied me inside. They had a reason, of course: one last bet on an airport slot. Throughout my visit his wife Aline had been winning ten and fifteen dollar bets (maybe even the occasional twenty) and at the airport she went one further and managed to coax $80.00 out of a machine. Lucky them.
It was a whirlwind of an adventure (as the pictures readily indicate) and I won’t soon forget our exploits there on the Las Vegas Strip.
I’m standing in a club called ‘Excess’, a gay bar on Main Street in Green Bay, wearing zombie make-up and tattered clothes, wondering what the hell I’m doing with my life. The make-up artist and his girlfriend are on the dance floor shaking what they got as I lean against a wall and ponder my existence. First things first I did not choose this club; I agreed to come here because the drinks are cheap and nobody judges you, you are who you are. Gay, straight, zombie…none of that matters right now. I feel down because I wanted to meet someone tonight, anyone, preferably a woman, pretty, relatively young, but it is impossible because the make-up artist did such a good job that I am hideous. Beneath all this latex rubber and fake blood no one can tell what a handsome man I am, so I am drinking way too much and thinking about smoking a cigarette (I quit six months ago). Not that what I want can be achieved in this club; not more than two minutes ago I watched two chicks make out with each other in front of the bathroom while a guy in a full body leather bondage outfit lead another man around on a leash. The one on all fours was wearing ass-less chaps and a motorcycle hat Ala Rob Halford from Judas Priest.
My companions finish on the dance floor and we reconvene by the bar. We decide to leave, to go to the country saloon next door, and what the hell, right? Can’t get any worse.
We head over and people comment on the costumes.
“AAARRRGGGG!” I say convincingly, vomiting more fake blood by crunching a plastic capsule in my mouth that tastes like cough syrup.
As we navigate toward the bar I think about everything that has transpired tonight and it makes me more depressed. We started the evening at a party with so many beautiful women I was utterly overwhelmed. All taken, of course. And the guys they were with? Well, let’s just say there isn’t ad spaced reserved for them in Maxim Magazine for the next designer cologne. How did they get these gorgeous women? I wondered, and how did I get one? The world is soooo unfair.
No difference in this country bar: the place is wall to wall with smoking hot babes. Does the rest of the world know that Green Bay, Wi, is full of such amazingly stunning women? And here they are hanging all over beer-bellied guys in cowboy boots with obscene facial hair. I’ll say it again: “AAARRRGGGG!”
This leads me to believe that there is simply no point in carrying on, in continuing my useless existence. I give up, I’m throwing in the towel and calling it a night. I ask my friends what they want to drink and they profess to being drunk so I order a beer for me and two waters for them. The woman tending bar is nice to me but she outweighs me by at least sixty pounds. She is pretty though, and the fact that she is nice makes me smile. Hell, I could do worse than her. Maybe I should set my sights lower.
So I stand against a rail overlooking the dance floor, watching a guy dressed as the Joker strip a fur coat off of an otherwise shirtless, giant, hairy dude and proceed to lick his nipples and I wonder what they are doing here and why they aren’t at Excess. Is anybody seeing this but me? Yes, and no one seems to care. Do I care? No, not really, I just want to meet a nice woman who I can enjoy relaxing evenings with and have long conversations about nothing. I want to cuddle; I want to feel breasts pressed against my chest, warm, soft lips brushing against my ear. Instead I am alone, witnessing things I can’t erase from my mind if I want to, which I do, very badly
The evening comes to an end when the couple I am with decides they want to go. It’s probably all the hot women; he wants to get his girlfriend home and nail her. I don’t blame him. She’s a looker herself, all dressed up in a harlequin costume complete with zombie rotting flesh. I imagine they are going to have a mighty fine time, but I’m not, you know, imagining it. That would just be rude.
They drop me off at my place and we urinate (just the dude and I) on the lawn. Then they split and I give in to temptation and smoke a cigarette I bummed from someone at the country bar. Just another day in the life of a lonely man, a zombie all dressed down with no place to go…
Today marks the one-year anniversary of this blog’s inception, and as I made my way through the day I thought I was going to post a nasty, sarcastic, scathing tribute. I’ve relocated from beautiful, sunny, San Diego to cold, rainy, snowy, cold (did I say that twice? Yes, yes I did) Wisconsin for starters, leaving behind a life I miss just about every day. There were many reasons for this move, but none of them seem very good when staring down the barrel of a Midwest winter. And while sitting in my car at a gas station this morning (aggravated, grouchy, out of sorts) my doors automatically locked and when I opened the door the car alarm went off and I couldn’t shut it off. The gas station attendant and his two teeth thought I done had sumthin’ wrong wit me. Then I took the wrong highway and wound up in some cow pasture, trying to get from Whitewater to Madison. Returning to Madison, my GPS lead me to a highway with a bridge out and refused to take orders otherwise to direct me around it. All of this happened after visiting one of my sister’s, a weekend involving a lot of outside activities in forty-degree temperatures and rain. It was no wonder two of her children were sick, I’d thought sarcastically, watching as she made a homemade apple pie while her youngest child continued to hack her lungs out into the batter no matter how many times my sister told her to ‘cover her mouth’. And the auction we attended left plenty to be desired; I told her quite frankly that if this were merely five years ago I would have been giving her ten shades of crap about this ridiculous, redneck activity that her husband (a very nice fellow, by the way) adored so much. In my opinion they couldn’t give that junk away, much less sell it, yet they did. Yes, it was with all this in mind that I was going to write an absolutely wretched piece that would involve nothing but insults and bitching about small towns and the inbred people who inhabit them, not to mention the Midwest, Wisconsin in particular.
But instead I am not going to do that, and here is why: I just read somebody else’s blog post (bluestockings19) and it was such a positive, uplifting message that I’d feel like a douchebag in comparison. I called off the dogs, so to speak, and am instead going to give thanks for my wonderful family and all the things about them that I enjoy and love. For anyone who reads this blog because of my narcissistic, supercilious, often downright haughty nature I most sincerely apologize for the turn of heart and assure you it won’t last. Everything still sucks and I am a grouch who wishes his debut novel The Gyre Mission: Journey to the *sshole of the World would sell so I can thumb my nose at decent society, trust me.
Be that as it may, thank you to anyone who has read, ‘liked’, or followed this blog. You have certainly made my year. Peace.
This blog has been about many things over the last year ever since it’s inception: funny and tragic pet sitting stories, personal health issues, rants about bad California drivers, crappy, crazy jobs I’ve had, classic alcoholic writers, pissing and moaning about moving from the west coast back to the Midwest…I’ve covered a lot of ground since I’ve been writing this. The blog was started because of a suggestion made by Penny Sansevieri, CEO of Author Marketing Experts, a literary promotional company. She told me it would be a great way to promote my novel The Gyre Mission: Journey to the *sshole of the World. But the thing is, I’d never quite understood what people read blogs for, and found that the different subject matter I touched upon was hit or miss. Looking around throughout the blog world, I found people wanted sports and news and politics and hard facts, not necessarily silly stories about animals or being inappropriately wasted in a Von’s grocery store and getting into it with the guy outside collecting money for the Salvation Army, subsequently arrested and then getting anally raped in jail by a six foot six black man named Michael Jackson. But be that as it may, I am pressing on. I suppose I could make this entry a rant about how hard it is to push a self-published book to a saturated market where traditionally published authors are fighting to gain ground, about how much money I’ve spent and seen no return on my investment (over $12,000 and counting), or how my novel is actually well written over that of the 299,000 other crappy self-published authors who are churning out zombie novels at a pace that is beyond ridiculous (anyone ever hear of Dave Moody? Hater’s and then his Autumn zombie series? Jesus Christ give me a fucking break (parenthesis within a parenthesis he is NOT self-published)!). Yes, I could go on and on and you (all of my three readers) would think that I am jealous, that I am a bad writer who is blowing off steam making fun of authors who make it onto the bestseller list and don’t have to pay to publish their own work. The fact is you might be right.
So I’ll switch gears here and talk about my latest attempt at publicity: I have my book registered and being presented both in soft cover and ebook at the 2013 Frankfort Book Fair, the largest literary event in the known universe. Folks from all over the world (over 300,000, a quarter of them members of the media) gather in Frankfort, Germany to see what the latest and greatest trends in literature are. Who’s going to be the next Stephen King, the next J.K. Rowling? Inquiring minds want to know! Even better, what the hell are those two promoting as we speak (a sequel to The Shining and a thriller, respectively)? Yes, all in all a bonafide HUGE ASS event in which my novel will be stacked amongst thousands of others in the Combined Book Exhibit bookshelves, vying for attention both in print and digital copy. And will I get any attention, this absolutely fantastic book that has so far been virtually ignored? A novel Kirkus Indie reviews called ‘Visually engaging, an irrefutably intoxicating adventure’ and ‘one big, bad-ass book’ by Kat of Bibliobabes.ca, not to mention many readers on Goodreads and Amazon.com. Every time I do a free give away I run out well before the posted closing (but I am not stupid; I’ve found SEVERAL copies immediately for sale on Amazon, listed as ‘autographed’…fucking pricks).
As no one is clamoring for this blog I can say whatever I want here. I can cuss and scream and shout and call you all a bunch of pussy faggots for not buying my book and it doesn’t matter (although I do apologize to my three readers; I am not talking about you). Because in a world full of books we, the unknowns, can only keep competing for your attention and hoping that we eventually get it. That one day it will click and you’ll say to yourself: “Holy shit! His autobiographical stuff is like David Sedaris and his horror fiction is like Stephen King. I love those fucking writers! Where have you been all of my life?”
And the answer would be: right here, sitting in front of this fucking laptop and begging you cocksuckers to at least read a free excerpt (available on my website http://www.edgarswamp.com or at Bookbuzzr (also known as Freado) or on Goodreads). It is literally everywhere. If you looked hard enough you’d find the whole copy for free somewhere (don’t ask me where, but I know it’s out there. I do a lot of stupid things when I’m drunk, just ask my neurologist).
But readers don’t want good books, they want tired crap churned out by hacks who need money to buy fourth homes in Stockholm, Sweden where they can hide inside by the fire and secretly burn journals they kept while in community college in Andover, Michigan where they had unprotected sex with minors and never got caught because their parents where on the board of review and the city council…
Yet I digress. My book is at the 2013 Frankfort Book Fair in Frankfort, Germany where I hope someone fucking sees it and picks it up, flips through it and reads something that catches their eye (if indeed I haven’t been scammed by Combined Book Exhibits and the book isn’t really there). And then maybe they’ll contact me through my website and ask to see my next book, ‘Denied’, a futuristic take on the American health care system (available in paper back and ebook in April of 2014). And soon enough people will be willing to pay to read this fucking blog but I’ll continue to give it away for free because I’m such a nice guy. Really, honest. Trust me…and buy my fucking book ($2.99 ebook for fuck’s sake available through Amazon.com). Thank you (and sorry to my three readers!).
After getting absolutely no response on the Bukowski post (none of you blog readers enjoys classic literature I guess) I suppose it is back to doing what people liked about this blog: funny animal stories. Actually, what people seem to like best is advice or sports or politics or medical shit but here goes anyway.
I was in my second year of pet sitting, having yet to give my business a name (it later became Moonlight Pet Sitting) and I had a regular client I’d acquired through the clinic I worked at. Suffice it to say all of my clients at that time were through the clinic. I’d met the family when I assisted with the euthanasia of their cat, a very sad event indeed, but what follows is quite humorous. Besides the cat they also had two beagles, a male and female, Max and Roxy respectively. They were both very sweet dogs that got to enjoy a lot of time outside because they had a fenced backyard, and were also very young at this point. Max was just over a year and Roxy was six months. Because of this she had to be crated when left alone in the house and Max had to be kept in the laundry room. They later added a dog door and allowed Roxy free reign, but at the time I was pet sitting for them this wasn’t the case, so I always tried not to be gone for very long in sympathy of their overactive bladders.
Whenever I pet sat for them the owners would gate off the kitchen/dining room area (as this had the patio doors that led to the backyard) and this was where we spent all of our time. The living room was right next to it and I could turn on the TV and watch it from the kitchen table. Gradually I’d allow myself to go over the gate and sit in one of the living room chairs, but mostly I hung out with them out of compassion because when I went over the gate they wanted to as well. At night we all slept in one of the kids bedrooms in the bed together, snuggling closely.
So things went like this for about a year and then a friend of theirs got a poodle mix named Black Jack and I began pet sitting for him too. He was a very sweet, hyper little guy and he loved playing with Max and Roxy. Since they got on so famously the owners elected to have me pet sit all three at the beagle’s house when the two families went on vacation together. No problem, I thought. Easy money because I could charge for three pets.
That was where I was wrong. Together they were a nonstop combo of playfulness that knew no bounds. They tore around the yard constantly, the three of them acting like kids on the first day of summer vacation. And that wasn’t all. For some reason (although all three were fixed) they went at it like a bunch of horny teenagers. Black Jack was after Roxy and Max was after Black Jack. Yes, this meant that Max was gay or bi, but at least he wasn’t going after his sister (I failed to mention that they were from the same bitch, different fathers but same mom).
One evening as the orgy was taking a turn for the worse I had to separate all of them but I allowed Max to have his pillow. He kept at that thing, humping and humping as I watched and laughed. That is until I realized I should make him stop. I mean, enough is enough, right?
When I took the pillow away I noticed Max was walking all hunched over, that he seemed as if he was in pain. Closer examination revealed his erect penis was stuck outside the prepuce (the sheath of skin that holds it in). It was big and red and swollen (well, duh). I didn’t know what to do so I called the veterinarian I worked for. At the time he’d take my calls after hours (it was nine on a Saturday night) on his home phone or cell.
“Hello?” he answered.
“It’s huge and it’s swollen!” I exclaimed.
“And it’s all red and I can’t get it to go down! What do I do?”
At this point I have to mention that the vet was young and had a perverted mind like my own. I think it is safe to say he thought I was talking about myself and was somewhat taken aback (only because he wasn’t gay).
“What do you want me to do about it?” Sounds like a personal problem, his tone suggested.
“It’s Max!” I explained and at once he understood.
“Let me get on line.”
He booted up his laptop and started researching it.
“Get some cold water, or some ice and apply it to the, um, swelling…”
At this we both had to laugh.
“Either that or you can use salt. You know, like how you can remove a leech or slug?”
I dug through the cabinets, found a rag and then filled it with ice from the freezer.
“I’m going to try it and call you back.”
I hung up and sought out Max, who had lied down in the meanwhile. I rolled him over onto his back (he was such a sweet, docile dog) and saw to my joyful surprise that it had gone in on it’s own. The ice pack wasn’t necessary. I called the vet back.
I brought Max in to see him the next day and while he was being examined I referred to him as ‘Boner Boy’ and the name stuck. It became our personal nickname for him whenever he visited the clinic for shots, blood draws etc. And I still pet sat for he and Roxy and took them on walks, until 2008 when the bottom fell out of the market and the family had to cut back on their spending and could no longer afford me. It was sad to see them go.
But while I was still pet sitting for them I had to tell the owners about what happened, and they had to confront the issue that their dog was gay (or bi) and that the three probably shouldn’t be combined for overnight pet sitting. After that I took care of the houses separately. Black Jack’s owners continued to be a client of mine after Max and Roxy no longer were, so I would see them around the neighborhood, and then eventually they didn’t need me anymore either. But by that time my clients had all turned over and I’d replaced them with new ones, but I’ll never forget little Max the Boner Boy, his sweet sister Roxy and the ever-randy Mr. Black Jack…they were always ‘up’ for a good time!