Life, Living, Becoming...
Gerry Coughlan


So my mom was concerned 'cause I used to breathe quite loudly at night while sleeping. She took me off to one of the Children's Hospitals for a series of allergy tests. About 15 injections on my inside of my forearm.
Look the other way!
What a brave young fella!

I hadn't a clue what they were doing but understood eventually that particles of housedust, feathers, pollen and God knows what else were being injected to check my reaction to these foreign bodies. Now, I wondered for a minute where they might have found the tiniest feather in the universe to fit out the top of the needle but...
Anyway, the "housedust" and "feathers" flared up a little bit but honestly I had more of a reaction to the syringe.
There was no "housedust" problem in our house; we always ate on the spotless clean floor.
So, the feather pillow was turfed out or thrown into the back of a cupboard and a Dunlop pillow bought. Dunlop? Didn't they make tyres? I wasn't going to sleep very well on a bleedin' tyre, whether radial or cross-ply!
It was a lovely pillow but I think I still breathed loudly.

There was another time... I was very, very young and we had to travel miles to a huge, brand new hospital in Crumlin, to check why I only had one ball. Modesty forbids me to go into too much detail here but us kids used to call doctors and nurses who had to touch you down there: The Mickey Maulers. So the mickey mauler had a look and pronounced me fine and fit.
It's inside, missus. Don't be worried. Perfectly normal.
He took a rubber mallet and with a light tap to my pelvis, popped me shy testicle into me bally bag with its lonely mate

Had you there for a minute?? hehe
Nah.. must've popped down in my sleep one night. Don't remember. But all in working order. I have a pair!
The things us kids have to go through to put our ma's mind at ease.

The things you kids put your ma's through, more like!!

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