Thursday, November 20, 2008

Guest Post: A Day in the Life of Male Infertility aka Wakey, Wakey, Hands on Snakey

The following is a post by my husband, Mr. S. I'll add my thoughts on a follow-up blog in the near future, but in the mean time, here it is:

My wife mentioned to me that she posted pictures about a day in the life of an “infertile,” which contains pictures of things most men assume only exist horror movies, and raunchy pornos (or so I hear). So, I figured this would be a perfect opportunity to introduce you to a day in the life of a male infertile. Side note: this was at a time where I was in a particularly bad job, and events took place about a year ago. Without further ado;

A Bird in the Hand is Worth Two in the Bush (yes, you can read into that)
Today is the day where I get to actually lend a hand (ha!) in our reproductive challenges. I know this because my alarm goes off an hour earlier than it should. It should be an interesting day. Shelby reminds me that my appointment is at 7:30 AM and that she’s picking up my little soldiers at 10:00 AM. I silently hope that the fruits of my ‘participation’ are a lot of soldiers, instead of my usual ‘Army of One’. I roll out of bed, and get ready. Luckily for me, I don’t have makeup to put on, hair to curl, or whatever it is that takes you ladies so long to get ready. I’m out the door in 30 minutes. It is 7:00 AM; a half-hour should be plenty of time to get to my appointment.

Can You Hear Me Now?
Being someone who loves anything with a digital display and buttons, I love my tech gadgets. However, a cell phone can be a harbinger of doom. I’m convinced that it’s psychic too. It predicts my day. Is work going to be busy, annoying, light, or anything in-between? I know the answer within 5 minutes of getting in my car. My phone literally rings off the hook the entire time I’m in my car. My commute to the reproductive clinic is about thirty minutes. Instead of relaxing and reflecting on what may (or sadly, may not) be, I’m barraged with meaningless work related questions, false assumptions and over-reactive concerns. I arrive to the doctor’s office tense. Not just tense, but teeth clenching, jaw breaking, a whore in church on Sunday tense. You’d think with my impending ‘release’ I would be more relaxed, but it is quite the opposite, I assure you. My phone keeps ringing. I am now sitting in the parking lot, trying to wrap up a call with an angry co-worker and am struggling to remember where the clinic entrance is.

Cum Again?
I step out of the car and am caressed by the cool fall air. Today is one of those rare days where, somehow, the air kissing my face makes me feel much better- relaxed even. If this was a Folgers commercial, I’d close my eyes, take a sip of warm steamy coffee, inhale deeply, and smile to myself. I wonder what I’m complaining about. I get to wake up, look at some boobies and do what every 15 year old does when they find their first Victoria’s Secret catalog.

It takes me a while, but I finally find “Suite J.” I turn the door knob and am expecting to be greeted by a nice reception area (especially given how much all this fertility stuff costs). Walking into the clinic, something very familiar jogs my memory. The door rubs against the door jamb when I open it making a very loud sound to announce my presence, the smell of fake very artificial potpourri is in the air, there is almost no carpet between my feet and the floor boards are so worn, they creek under my feet. I have the vague feeling that I’ve been here before. It hits me; I’m visiting a shitty retirement home. The only thing it is missing is the obligatory old people on the park bench waiting for “Johnny” except, Johnny never shows. Instead of old folks waiting, the first people I see are a couple who looks nervous and a woman, sitting alone, waiting for her appointment. As a guy, walking into the clinic alone, I might as well wear a neon sign around my neck with an arrow pointing to my crotch that says “I’m about to tug on this.” Suddenly and expectantly, my tension is back. I pity the guy who has an easy time getting aroused at the smell of “grandma’s place.” I am sure they exist and live in the seedier areas of the internets. I consider creating a fetish website around this clinic, as I’m sure it will do well in said circles.

In Soviet Russia, Penis Rubs You
What I find most interesting about offices that revolve around fertility is that my expectation for a sensitive, caring, empathetic receptionist is not met each and every time. Funny thing is that I’m always surprised by this. This office is no exception. As I make my way through the creaking retirement home, I am greeted by a battle axe of a woman. Pleasantly greeting me would be way too cliché, instead, she stares blankly, and without much effort says “Name?”. As an aside, I am not a confrontational person at all, in fact I’ll work harder to avoid one than if a confrontation actually took place. I like to be overly friendly with people like this. “Hi!” I say a little too loudly and enthusiastically. “My name is (hmm, pen name time…) Johnny and I have a 7:30 appointment.” She looks at the loud ticking clock by her desk and scowls, its 7:45. She breaks down the process. “Put name on cup, go in cup, leave cup in room, and leave out the back.” My passive aggressive side kicks back in, “go in cup? I’m not here to pee.” I’d like to pretend that I’m embellishing this, but not really. I questioned being asked to “leave out the back” and she points to a partly opened door through what looks like the break room. I am then lead to ‘the room’.

You know those episodes of Dateline NBC that reveal how disgusting motel rooms are? Let’s just say I’m very glad I didn’t have a UV light with me. I’m not the cleanliest person, but this room grossed me out. A little context here; I was THE FIRST appointment of the day. No one else has used this room and I was greeted with the following;

1. The obligatory leather chair that’s been so warn I can see where every bare ass has sat

2. A trash can FULL of used paper towels. Unfortunately, these paper towels didn’t clean up spilled apple juice.

3. The same creaky floors and good ‘ol musty smell

4. Volume buttons on the TV that do not work. On top of that, the volume is set a tad too high to be comfortable for the material I’ll be “enjoying”

In this disgusting room, somehow, I am supposed to produce what may become mini-me.

Everything I have gone over can be explained away, none of it really matters except one thing; What adult materials do I get to enjoy while working on, ahem, producing? Let me tell you, who ever chose said adult materials, is either blind, sick, or a cheap bargain bin-hunting asshole. Whatever happened to normal, attractive people porn? This isn’t it. Titles from their VAST selection of four are “Thai Me Up”, “Big Booty Bitches”, “Luv you long time 5” and (I kid you not) “No White Chicks.” I flash back to a conversation with my wife the previous night:

Her: “Why don’t you put some hot chick action on your iPhone
Me: “Nah, knowing my luck, someone will start messing with my phone at work and two chicks loving on each other will show up.”
Her: “So what! Just delete it when you are done. I’ll even download some for you. Where do you find that stuff?
Me: “I have no idea what you’re talking about. There’s pornographic material on the internet?” (I like to tell her and my friends that I keep my porn on her computer since she’ll never look there)

I simply do not understand the selection of these four titles. Maybe I’m in the minority here but just show me two attractive people doing it and I’m good. The sad thing is that the people, clothes, hair styles (and not the hair on the head), and production values are from the 70’s. There is nothing erotic about any of this. Watching the old married couple from “That 70’s show” do it on the linoleum flower counter tops would be more arousing. I curse myself for not following my wife’s iPhone suggestion.

You’d think it would end here, but it doesn’t. While the “act” is occurring, you can hear, through the paper thin walls, staff members laughing and talking loudly in the other room. When your pants are down, and you’re exposing yourself to the lovely “Big Booty Bitches” on the TV, laugher is the last thing you should hear. Ironically, I gain a little respect for the fat, ugly hairy man in the video who can get a hard on at the drop of a hat (or pants).

Eventually, nature takes hold (man, I got to stop with the insinuations) and I’m ready to get the hell out of this place. I always wonder how long you should wait after doing your deed. It seems nasty to walk out of THE ROOM with a flushed brow. In this case I could have walked out with my pants down because I was greeted to the receptionist pointing her meaty arm and sausage finger towards to back door asking me to “out that way.” God forbid the nervous couple and solitary woman see me leave the way I came in.

I walk out the door. The crisp air welcomes me once again and I let out a small sigh of relief. The fall air breathes its life into me and I am refreshed. Smelly grandma’s house is such a small price to pay in what could become the best thing that has ever happened to us. I silently thank Shelby for enduring so much; more than I will ever understand. I get back to the car; my cell phone reports that I have 18 missed calls and 10 voicemails. Time to start the day.


Nikki said...

OMG - "Johnny" aka Mr. S is a great writer!! Very very eloquent I must say!

Such a great idea to get the "male" point of view, Shelby!

I'm waiting for your analysis of the post too!

Lorraine said...

Hmmm....somehow I always thought the man got the good end of the deal in this process. Now, I'm pretty sure a freshly-condomed dildo-cam and a nice clean paper gown are by far the better part!

Martha@A Sense of Humor is Essential said...

Great post, thanks for sharing your special insight. Shelby is one lucky gal.

Baby Smiling In Back Seat said...

Fabulous guest post! I laughed so much at the porn names. Our clinic has the tamest magazines available.

banditgirl said...

Holy shit! Mr. S! Have you considered collaborating with your wife on an article to be published in the New Yorker? Or even the New York Times? or People magazine? I don't want to be overdramatic, but this could even make it to one of my academic sociology journals! Have you been keeping a journal like Shelby maybe has in the blogosphere? If not, I guarantee you, your following here would skyrocket immediately after posting the first post.
And about the post itself: it was very intense for me. I went back and forth between crying and laughing, with some anger thrown in for good measure! Now I know the Eastern bloc does not exist only in the Soviet Union (as what you described pretty much matched all doctor-patient interactions I experienced growing up in that part of the world). Now I know what my partner has gone through. I will totally share this with him.
P.s. As a non-native speaker I am wondering if you could explain to me the origin of "wakey-wakey, hands on snakey." I mean I get the "snakey" part, but overall?

Lost in Space said...

Great post, Mr. S!! You seriously need to start your own blog so we can all follow the "man's point of view". Very well written!!!

I can hardly wait for your interpretation, Shelby. (;

'Murgdan' said...

Well THANK YOU for sharing your point of view--something I doubt my husband would ever think of doing. (though he does bring his entire laptop into the room to avoid using the 'big booty' films). He called their selection 'boring' I don't know what that meant.

luna said...

I think you and my husband went to the same clinic. yikes.

thanks for sharing your perspective here, and of course for the morning laughs!

Michelle said...

Thanks it is nice to here a male perspective on things and you expressed it very well. My husband never says much about it...I'm going to have him read this.


Holy cow, this was the funniest friggin' post I've read in weeks.
The title alone is hilarious.

My husband and I were dying of laughter... because we can envision every moment.

We always laugh about the
"porn room" aka "men's lounge".

Shelby, you are lucky to have such a humorous guy beside you. :>

Smiling said...

Oh man.. you apply amazing writing talent and skill to convey just how bizarre and needlessly wrong the ordeal is.

Should my husband ever complain about our clinic with its kind staff (mostly IF veterans), clean collection rooms, front door exits (just out of sight from the waiting room), and option of doing the collection elsewhere and dropping it off within the hour - I'll have him read this post because as humorous as it was, it really does convey how much worse it can really be.

Sam said...


You'd think that there would be far more consideration for people that have to go through this.

An excellently told viewpoint.

Hope2morrow said...

HA! I'm so glad to hear a male's perspective. How sweet of him to be a guest writer. Please thank him for us all.

I need Babe to read this.

Can't wait to hear Shelby's take.

Lisa said...

You guys could be a stand-up IF comedy duo!! Injecting humor where it's sorely needed. A big bravo to Mr. S for telling his side.

Anonymous said...

What a great post! It's so nice to hear from the guy's perspective. My husband will be producing his sample for our IUI tomorrow. Luckily we live close enough that he can do it at home, with his choice of porn. I'm going to have him read this so he can see how lucky he is!


Peeveme said...

I know what those places smell like and it's not at all like my grandma's house. What the heck went on at your Dh's grandmother's house?

chicklet said...

This was brilliantly written. Just brilliant.

Guera! said...

This was HYSTERICAL! So glad I stopped by. I needed the laugh. said...

Hilarious! I mean, how you wrote it. Thank God my husband gets to do it at home!

Amy said...

I'm here from creme de la creme (kind of appropriate for this post...). This was a hilarious spin on a not-so-funny topic. Thanks for the male perspective.

areyoukiddingme said...

And that is why my husband created his sample at home and made me carry it in my armpit all the way to the doctor's office to keep it warm.

Yikes...what a nightmare.

Anonymous said...

this is a truly great, hilarious post. Nice work, other half!! And I'm not talking about "all your cup are belong to us" =)