Last week, I went on one of my regular 9 mile runs (don’t worry, this blog isn’t about running. That one starts in the new year with The Running Spaceman). Obviously, by the time I get home, I’m sweaty, smelly and in need of a shower.
Running has a few drawbacks (honest, this isn’t a running blog), most of them involving chafing. There doesn’t seem to be any pattern to this, but occasionally I’ll suffer from ‘runner’s nipple’, a condition that results in your nipples being chafed. The sensation is such that in extreme circumstances I truly believe if I turned all the lights out my nipples would glow in the dark.
Anyhow, on this particular day, I discovered that the glowing sensation had travelled elsewhere. South, to be specific. Into the trouser area. It was as if somebody had taken some liniment and rubbed it into my underwear. I eyed Lady Barton St Mary suspiciously.
“What’s the matter with you?” she said, her eyes narrowing suspiciously.
I explained that I had a strange tingling sensation in my nether regions.
Her eyes immediately widened and a look of panic appeared on her face. She had obviously misunderstood my intentions, but before she took her usual evasive action of running to the bathroom and locking herself in, I explained that maybe, because I’ve increased my weekly running distances, perhaps my running shorts had decided to start chafing.
“Best keep an eye on it, then,” she offered, trying not to make any visual contact but staring intently at her Homes and Gardens magazine.
My next shower proved to be even worse. This time, not only had the tingling sensation moved southwards, it had now manifested itself elsewhere. As I dried myself, tears streamed down my face from the burning sensation emanating from my behind; Johnny Cash singing ‘Ring of Fire’ echoed inside my head.
As the queen might say, I was experiencing an ‘anus horibilis’. Now, since running doesn’t involve any exertion of the sphincter muscle, I quickly concluded the cause may be something else.
The moral of the story? Be careful when using ‘shower gel for men with added tea tree oil’. Described as an ‘invigorating experience.’ That’s one way of putting it.