I have always considered myself somewhat of a know-it-all. I can talk intelligently about virtually any subject, and if you ever find your way onto a trivia team with me, you will invariably be on the winning side. There is one area however where I feel somewhat less than competent. At age 13, I conjured up images of what I believed to be the inner workings of the gynecologist’s office, and until recently, never had a reason to waiver from my assumptions.
I was a prepubescent teen in the 1980’s when the established sex symbol was the awe-inspiring, feather-haired Hawaiian Tropic model. When it came to a gynecologist’s office, those gorgeous women encompassed every thought, as I visualized tanned, blond bombshells parading through the front door. A darkened lobby and rotating disco ball provided an alluring and frightening arena that was too much for a young man to contemplate. Off in the corner, a bartender struggles to mix up a batch of daiquiris while singing along with the soft, sweet sounds of Lionel Ritchie tunes emanating from the DJ’s speakers. Oh, how I wish I could be a fly on that leopard skin wallpaper.
I knew that the man running that office had found himself the ideal career path, and I could only hope to eventually be in charge of my own party-practice, but the odds were stacked against me. I wasn’t very bright nor had the stomach necessary to perform invasive medical procedures. Looking back on it, it’s probably a good thing. I used to deliver pizzas in high school and I learned that if you’re around it day in and day out, it takes years before you want to eat pizza again. Get my drift?
The closest I ever came to anything even remotely near the magic was thanks to my friend Tommy. Tommy’s father was a gynecologist, and one day the idiot showed up at school with a speculum. When he told me what it was used for, I couldn’t bring myself to believe him. For those of you not familiar, a speculum is… You know what? Google it. If you’re a regular reader of mine, you probably wouldn’t be too surprised to know that the two of us spent the day chasing girls through the hallways, operating the gadget while making quacking sounds.
I hadn’t given the topic much thought since my teens. Being a single guy, the word ‘gynecology’ rarely crosses my path, but throughout the years it does come up on occasion. We have all heard the tired old jokes, mostly coming from men who can’t get laid to save their lives. When an attractive woman is accidentally paired with an asshole, you are bound to hear a repulsive and horribly crafted remark. Oh, you wish you were her gynecologist? Well, sorry about your luck with the whole med school thing buddy, but let’s face facts; you didn’t make it past the 10th grade, and those fries aren’t going to cook themselves.
Still, the fascination of the potential happenings behind the walls of that office park clinic has always stirred up intrigue and wonder. It is the grown man’s equivalent of the Willy Wonka factory. What could possibly be happening in that mysterious building?
I had to figure it out.
Being a “journalist”, I decided to reach out to some friends to find out what their experiences were rather than prematurely spout off stupid shit like I usually do. Jason was worthless. Rob was even worse. Eventually, I realized that maybe the input from a woman would make for a slightly less misinformed article. I was too embarrassed to ask my female friends, so I went where anyone seeking out medical advice would go. The local watering hole.
Imagine seeing a beautiful young lady sitting alone on a bar stool, sipping wine in the hopes of finding Mr. Right. Even with her guard up, she would never expect to be propositioned with the world’s most confusing pickup line:
“Hi, I’m Adam. Ever have a D&C?”
The move actually turned out to be a pretty good ice breaker. Strangers were surprisingly candid about their personal accounts with knees akimbo. Some simply complained about the equipment being too cold, while one mentioned that her doctor looked and dressed like fat-Elvis.
After piles of stories, all that I really learned was that every procedure should simply be called “scraping”. I was more bewildered as ever, thinking that these doctors must have a margarita in one hand and a drywall knife in the other as they grate off whatever moldy remnant it is that they need to examine. Aside from a few phone numbers, I got nothing in terms of viable material, leaving me perched in cluelessness.
Now you may be asking yourself, why the sudden reprise of a dead dream? I started a new job recently where my office window overlooks the parking lot of a little Wonka paradise, and curiosity once again struck.
I had no choice but to spend hours staring out of the window, monitoring the comings and goings of every patient. The findings led me to realize that my Hawaiian Tropic assumptions were not as accurate as I had previously believed. Who knows? Many of the women entering may have been the former bikini models that I had once dreamed of, but that was 25 years ago, and cellulite-riddled thighs that even a horny teen would find unattractive, are obviously the end result of both rough lives and time. Despite the utter disappointment, nothing came even close to what I saw a few days ago.
After returning from a meeting, I witnessed something upsetting. Sitting across the street was a pick-up truck carrying behind it a small fishing boat, tying up 6 parking spaces. The metallic flotation device appeared to be one that you would see in a pond or narrow river, carrying a man and his son who were spending their afternoon developing a bond.
One question came to mind. What in the hell were the series of events that led to a pontoon boat appearing at the doorstep of my childhood quandary? Did a woman enter with her husband uttering “Once in a lifetime shot, doc!” or worse yet, “She jumped into the stream and fish floated to the surface.” My imagination instantly turned to disgust as a half-dozen filthy thoughts crossed my warped mind. A boat was sitting in the parking lot of what should have been a dream paradise filled with hot chicks, Jell-O shots, and Air Supply songs. Instead, two hillbillies appeared to be returning from a fishing trip that, for some reason, required an emergency pap smear.
Unfortunately, another meeting tore my attention away from the window. I returned not knowing what happened once the boat was gone. The dream was already on the verge of death, but it clearly came to an end at that moment.
I have yet to enter a gynecologist’s office, and I’m now pretty sure that I never should. My teenage dream is much more acceptable in my minds’ eye than that of a doctor using grilling tongs to pull a fish out of a redneck. I have officially given up on the wonders of what occurs, but will try my best to reflect upon the dreams of a 13-year old boy instead of the reality of what the 37-year old me had to mentally explore from afar.