Monday, November 01, 2004

Taking the Piss

"Have you got anything I can do it in?" I shouted to CJ from the kitchen.

"I don't think I've got anything really" She shouted back in her best 'i have really but I'm not telling you where' voice.

"What about a cup or a glass?" I said, presenting myself at the kitchen door with one in each hand

"I'll wash it out afterwards"

"You're not peeing in my glasses" her head had turned towards me as she said it, meaning that she meant it.

I grabbed an empty water bottle and ran upstairs.

On the recommendation of everyone I bought a diabetic testing kit from Boots on Saturday. I wasn't quite sure whether to be embarrassed asking for it or not, so I did the condom buyers shuffle up and down the pharmacy counter waiting for the right moment to go up to the pretty assistant.

You could see them doing sweepstakes in their little booth, probably along the lines of:

"I'm sure he's going to ask for condoms"

"Nah, it'll be piles cream"

"You're all wrong, he's going to ask for herpes treatment"

*I'd like to point out in the interests of openness that I have none of above ailments by the way.

"Have you got any diabetic testing kits?" I asked, disappointing them all.

"Urine or blood?"

I wasn't sure what the question was here - urine or blood what?

"Err... urine, the last time I looked - but you never know"

"Do you want to test through urine or through blood?"

"Oh, I see. Urine. Yes urine please. I thought you meant..."

"No, it's the way of testing"

So there I am a little later on, stood in the bathroom with my trousers round my ankles with an empty water bottle in one hand and the diabetic testing box with the instructions on the back in the other.

Instruction 1: Urinate as usual into a container.

I don't know about you pal but it's not usual for me to pee into a container - but I'll give it a go. I put the box down and prepared to pee into the water bottle. I wasn't too sure that my aim would have been good enough as I was dying for a pee so decided to stand in the bath to limit any potential spillage.

If there is a more undignified position to be in than stood in a bath with your trousers round your ankles preparing to pee into an empty water bottle then I'm all ears. No wonder so many people have diabetes and don't know. They can't do with the trauma of testing themselves. If I'd have been caught then it would have taken me years to get my self respect back.

In mid pee I got a little anxious when it looked like I was going to pee more than the capacity of the bottle, luckliy i didn't. God only knows what I would have done. I don't want to think about it.

Instruction 2: Dip testing strip in urine.

I put my bottle of warm urine carefully on the side and opened the box to get the testing strip out. The first thing that falls out of the box is a small cup - for my peeing convenience no doubt. Why didn't I open the box first? Mind you, the cup was minute, I'm not quite sure who their usual testers are but if that a normal pee then I must pee a lot heftier than the usual wannabee diabetic.

But say that I used the cup: would I pee in the cup first and then divert aim into the toilet when it gets full or would I pee first and try and intercept the stream? There's a lot of splatter potential there - I think I made the best choice with the water bottle.

So now I'm stood in the bath with my trousers round my ankles decanting the pee from the empty water bottle into the small cup. I feel like an incontinent chemist. Taking one of the testing strips I then dip it into the cup.

Instruction 3: Wait one minute for result

It didn't turn green, which is more than can be said for CJ when she walked in. So I'm not diabetic, which was an anti-climax. After all that I expected to be something. Maybe the Gods thought I'd been through enough. There's another testing strip in the box for a second test to be taken one day after, but I don't think I can take the mental anguish. I'd rather not know.

Maybe I should have removed the half full bottle and full cup from the bathroom before CJ went in though.