I had surgery for three hernias on Friday, and I’m just now beginning to recover enough to walk around. I always thought hernias sounded like an especially disgusting problem, even before (especially before) I knew what the word even meant: my first impressions were just that it had something to do with the lower part of the body, the despicable/dirty crotch/groin area, or the stomach at best. Hernia. The very word sounds repulsive and suggestive of bad behavior, like hysteria: like the tissues of your lower body are pulling themselves apart, or have been agitated in some grotesque way (doubtless due to a bad habit or moral failing).

Anyway, having had the surgery and been educated in the ways of hernias, I now know hernias are a fairly common thing. (It’s probably partly genetic, actually, as my father had them in the exact same area.) I now have three pot-holder-like plastic meshes implanted in my body to keep my guts from spilling out. It’s unpleasant to realize that your muscles and your overall body design aren’t necessarily enough to keep your body from just spillin’ out all over the place — if my intestines are going to go flying loose from my body, at least let it be due to being disemboweled by a broadsword in medieval combat! Even in sword & sorcery, the fate of disembowelment is always reserved for mooks and low-level bad guys: heroes almost always get to die by more dignified means, such as decapitation, heart-piercing or loss of limbs; perhaps equally bloody but not something that ends with their bowel messily splattered on the floor, their very integument and bodily shape compromised. I guess my point is: due to 21st century cybertechnology keeping my guts in place, this particular distressing scenario is that much less likely to happen. Whew. What a relief.

NEXT UPDATE: Wednesday!