Friday, June 28, 2013

More Moustaches, Among Other Things

WBK dali by WBK-WorkByKnight

WBK dali, a photo by WBK-WorkByKnight on Flickr.
***This has been languishing in my drafts for the last week. Here it is, as is, before it is completely irrelevant and ancient. Boo at will. It's the best I have to offer right now!

You see one of something and suddenly you're surrounded....... After my last post it seemed everywhere I turned there were moustaches! All better looking, you'll be happy to hear, than the last one.

I had an appointment last week in St.Petersburg, home to a museum of a very famous moustache. I gave myself two hours to get there, just to be on the safe side. Several distractions conspired to make me miss my exit: enjoying the sun glinting on the expanses of glassy water on either side as I crossed a long bridge;  dreamily noticing how blue the sky was with its scattering of white, fluffy clouds; admiring the noticeably more tropical vegetation,(than further north where we live) and doing a double take at a billboard of his tell-tale mustache, advertising the Salvador Dali museum. Graphic designers are so clever.... I would have loved to stop for a photo but that might not have been a good idea in the middle of a multiple lane highway! I couldn't even find a good photo of it on Flickr... I'm not much of a Dali fan myself. I'd have to be on some pretty potent drugs for his art to appeal to me --- but, obviously, I am in the minority. Fan or no, the new Dali museum is itself a work of architectural art. Alas, no photos. I was not going to the museum. After driving in panic-stricken circles for ten minutes, with the clock ticking, I finally got back on the right road and skated in to my appointment with seconds to spare.

The first person I saw had no beer belly; no shoulder droop either. He was slim and fit, with brown hair slicked back from a high, tanned forehead. His long sideburns and mustache-goatee combination looked like it must take at least an hour of man-scaping every morning. Judging by the photos on the wall, this was something he did to finance his real love, fishing. He was a neural diagnostic technician, which, after a few beers, he said, becomes a "nerve dude!"  He and I were in the same room because he was going to administer some tests, and I was the testee.  He taped wires to various places on my hands and arms and gave each place a series of shocks, starting with barely perceptible ones and gradually increasing in intensity to "ouch" level. It was uncomfortable, but not unbearable.
I asked if he had always wanted to be a nerve dude, or if he'd started out wanting to be a fireman.

Without missing a beat he deadpanned that he'd always enjoyed torturing things when he was growing up! That left me speechless, a rare occurrence. I think he was joking.I hope he was joking. I can just imagine the career counselling brochures: If you like to torture small animals (or big ones) you might enjoy a career as a neural diagnostic technician.   Hmmm.

I felt like a puppet. Zap! and my finger would jump; zap! again and my arm would twitch. But, he informed me, the tests he was doing on me were tame compared to other tests, that (he said) were really fun. I was glad I wasn't providing him with that much fun!

The next Mustache was the doctor who came in to read the results of Nerve Dude's tests, and then administer some of his own. No beer belly, no shoulder droop. He was nattily dressed in khakis and a dazzlingly white shirt with a beautiful blue tie......No, I didn't rip the tie from his neck to make a little silk bag. I'm quite good at behaving myself when I'm out. His beard and mustache were neatly trimmed, though it didn't look as though he spent quite as much time pruning as Nerve Dude!

For someone who hates needles, with the exception of sewing and knitting needles, this was getting down to some real torture. I tried not to be a sissy as the doctor poked needles into various muscles in my hands and arms. He didn't just poke them in, he probed around with them while they were deep in the muscle, all the while encouraging me to relax! Right! But I breathed deep (thank you yoga!) gritted my teeth---and still my face was wet when he finally finished with the last needle.

The good news is--- no slicing or dicing in the immediate future. I admit that I was apprehensive. The trick to keeping carpal tunnel from getting worse is, apparently, to hang your arms limply by your sides as much as possible; bend your fingers, whenever you can, in the direction opposite that needed to perform most daily tasks/movements, and most importantly, not to sleep with your elbows bent and your hands near your face. Ideally, you should give up writing, sewing, personal hygiene, computers, telephones, lifting things, opening things, cutting things, chopping things etc. But, if I did that I'd have to cut my wrists anyway! So, moderation in all of the above and I might last for another few rounds!

Note: Interestingly enough, none of these incidental mustaches were wearing shorts..... Not, that is, until later in the day, when I was home from my travels, and The Bean breezed in, complete with goatee, mustache....and shorts!


Dee said...

Dear Molly, I never realized that for carpal tunnel syndrome a person had to have these tortuous tests! No wonder tears were streaming down your face. I hope that the prognosis is good. Being moderate is hard for me but better that then the road of doing nothing but staring into space. Did the doctor really suggest that you give up those things--like living????? Peace.

Pam said...

Oh dear, how very stressful (but amusing, at second hand...). I'm not sure how you organise that sleeping thing. I think I probably do sleep like that.

Glad the dr's tie survived intact.

molly said...

Dee --- The doc suspected it was more than just CT so needed the tests to confirm, or not, his suspicions. Turns out he was right. And no, he didn't recommend curling up and dying right away, just warned me it would get worse if I wasn't careful.

Isabelle: mostly by sleeping on my back, something I never did before. You wake up feeling like a herd of buffalo stampeded through your mouth and throat!
I did have to restrain myself --- it was a very nice tie.

Relatively Retiring said...

That sounds awful, and I hope the outcome is bearable. Still, a good day for moustaches, but I'm sorry about the shorts!

Ali Honey said...

If the worst happens it may not be that bad. I have a friend who is continually hand sewing ( amazing things ) and she found after surgery she could still sew even with her hand in plaster. Hers are fine now but thinks she only has 75% the strength in her hands she had before.
Once you are alseep you cannot monitor what your body gets up to; where each limb and joint is, so be kind to yourself.

SmitoniusAndSonata said...

'Hanging loose' is probably rather hard to do on a regular basis without resorting to illegal substances .
I hope that you do manage to keep it at its present level for as long as possible .

Pauline said...

Have you tried acupuncture for relief. Just breathe out when the needles go in and you don't feel them. (And don't look, if needles give you the willies.)

I haven't seen a moustache in a dog's year!

Vagabonde said...

That test must have been so painful – I hope it was quick though. My husband already had a moustache when I met him in San Francisco. I remember he was going to be best man at his brother’s wedding and the bride refused to have him in the wedding party unless he would shave it off – he did not and still went to the wedding and never shaved it to this day.

Susan Kane said...

I have never understood those mustaches! The time it must take?

Hope you follow Dr. advice! I have to be careful as well.