I once worked with a guy who was concerned that, if he became rich and famous, women would accuse him of fathering their children and want a share of his wealth.
He waffled for a while about having a vasectomy, because he also worried that having all those sperm resorbed into his body would teach his system to cannibalize itself. In the end, his paternity-suit phobia won out over his self-initiated-immune-disorder fears and he made an appointment with a local urologist.
He told us later that he should have gotten up and left the minute the doctor pushed his way through the curtains surrounding the operating table. At first he thought the booze smell was just rubbing alcohol, until the doctor kind of staggered and grabbed onto the curtains to steady himself. But, for whatever reasons (I’m thinking pre-surgery anti-anxiety drugs), my co-worker’s self-preservation instincts failed to function.
Said co-worker left the doctor’s office with his parts intact (except for the planned snip), but over the weekend the site became infected. And extremely swollen.
I know this because when he returned to the office late the next week he brought in Polaroids that he’d taken with the aid of a mirror. I caught a glimpse of hairy buttocks and equally hairy legs raised in the air before I said, “Whoa! No, thank you!” and backed away.
There are just some things you’re better off not knowing about workplace acquaintances.
Later that day the women in the payroll office asked me about the pictures.
“I didn’t see them,” I said.
“We heard he showed them to you.”
“He tried to show them to me, but I said ‘no, thanks.’”
“Pam said you saw them.”
“I don’t look at pictures of men’s testicles,” I said firmly. “It’s one of my rules.”
I shared what he’d told me, all the gory details, but they still seemed disappointed.
I guess a picture really is worth a thousand words.