Winter had passed and once again I began my nomad’s odyssey and traveled from destination to destination searching for the ever elusive knowledge of the “self.” While on this winding path, I battled hypnotic sirens, one-eyed giants and women with enough makeup to ricochet bullets! Still, it was on this epic journey that I came across an individual that bestowed such wisdom upon me that I felt obligated to share it with those who would listen.
It was the ‘fools’ month, the month of April, when I found my self in the desert city 0of Dubai. I had been traveling for a week, and the scorching heat had left me withered and hungry. It was at the local ‘Zen’ tavern on Sheikh Zayed road that a gentleman with the devil’s beard and a girlish giggle welcomed me to break bread with him and other travelers. Among the other explorers was a man from the East.
As we sat quietly devouring our food and satisfying our cursed thirst, I learned that my friend from the Eastern had, at one time like me, also tasted the tinned fishes of Africa. His journey then took him to the spices of India and on to the dim-sum of China. As he regaled us with events that molded his life, he touched on a particular experience that surrounded his matrimony.
‘I realized while I lay beside the toilet bowl hoping that the worst of it was over and I had vomited everything there was to vomit, that I no longer could eat anymore canned fish. It was time for me to return to India and marry my Saraswati. Our families had known for years that it was only a matter of time before we would tie the proverbial knot followed by the traditional ‘Swaa-Haa’. That time had come. The last batch of mackerel was testament to that fact.
Everything had gone swimmingly. A romantic engagement followed by numerous celebrations brought us closer to the auspicious day. A week before the wedding I began to feel a cruel pain around my kidney, and it hurt when I urinated (See Tom Hanks in ‘The Green Mile’ for a more graphic image). Gonorrhea you ask? Perhaps, since who knows what the impact of too much tinned mackerel is, but why the pain in my kidney? Fortunately, my father-in-law-to-be was a doctor and during my check up he realized that I had kidney stones. I tried to take heed from the Nike commercial and decided to ‘Just do it’, knowing that on the wedding night I’d be ‘doing it and doing it’ like L.L. Cool J. It was then that the sharp pain ripped me out of my erotic music video and my FIL stated;
‘Beta, I think we’re going to have to go where no man has gone before…into your Nuni!’ ’
Tears began to caress my cheeks as I wept like a little girl who had her Barbie doll stolen. Was I crying because my FIL would see my ‘playstation’ before my wife? Or was it because another man was going to have his way with it? I still don’t know.
In order to perform the procedure of shoving a tube into my ‘nuni’ and removing the stones, I had to be circumcised. It was at that moment I wished I had had a ‘Bar-Mitzvah’. Not only would all this have been sorted out by the age of 13 but I’d have received a ton of gifts in exchange for my foreskin. Instead, I was about to receive a couple of annoyingly painful stones that couldn’t have come at a worse time.
After the procedure had been completed and the stones were in my palm, we were only two days away from the wedding. It was then that my FIL walked over to his daughter, my fiancé, and instructed her;
‘Beta, for the next one month, treat him like your brother’ (Insert image of Macaulay Culkin screaming with hands on his face from Home Alone here – THAT WAS ME!)
Needless to say, the ceremony was excruciating. The walk around the fire was more of a painful crawl and the sweat caused by the fiery mandap masked the tears that rolled down my face. Our ‘Suhagraat’ was spent playing Uno…and she won.
Two weeks into the marriage I noticed some of the stitches had come undone. And I decided to vist my wife’s ‘Chacha’ who was also a doctor. I explained my problem to him, but somehow the affliction was lost in translation, and instead of snipping away the unneeded thread, he decided to give it a massive heave! The action forced my stitches to open up and, let’s just say I ‘blossomed’. I lay there on the floor, exposed and screaming in pain, asking God why he had forsaken my Nuni?
‘Morphine, give me Morphine’ I cried, ‘Don’t amputate, save the nuni, do whatever, but save the nuni!’
The second time around, my brother-in-law, who too was in the medical field, patched me up using dissolvable thread. Talk about keeping it in the family! The downside wasn’t that my wife’s family had more fun with my ‘joystick’ than my wife did, but that we couldn’t consummate our marriage for another two months! In fact, I couldn’t even think about anything sexual, since an erection would lead to another episode of ‘painful blossoming’! As time went by any thought became arousing and when confronted by such a situation, I had to focus and repeat the word ‘chair’ like a mantra.
Eventually, five months had passed into our marriage before we finally had our delayed ‘Suhaagraat’. The waiting wasn’t completely in vain since I am now an ‘Uno’ specialist and compete on the professional circuit.’
Others at the table sat silently in awe until the bearded owner let out his giggle. Most of us pushed our plates away, as we had lost our appetite, and watched the Easterner continue to devour the Red Curry Chicken with Jasmine rice.
As he stood up to leave, he placed his hand on my shoulder and said,
‘Son, better to get cut young than to do it later and have to become an Uno Pro’ and with that, he pushed open the tavern door and walked back into the windy desert, sharing his legendary tales with those that would listen. The tavern owner came over to us and informed us that no one knew his name but he was known as the ‘Blossomer’. He then giggled again and walked away.
I understood that kidney stones can attack and impale us at anytime, but it is circumcision that’ll kill us or our sex life, at least. It was then that I realized that the Blossomer had provided the ever elusive answer to the long standing question, ‘To cut or not to cut?’
That’s a wrap!
By Chandru Bhojwani