Thursday, July 22, 2004


Today, the American Mastodon read an interesting article on conjoined twins, brought to his attention by this dude, and was struck by one passage in particular, wherein the author admits the following:

It is a basic truth that no one is 'normal'; to be normal is simply to pass for normal. Each of us has several genetic or other abnormalities: I, for example, have Dupuytren's contracture.

A quick Google search reveals that Dupuytren's contracture is "a thickening of deep tissue (fascia) which passes from the palm into the fingers. Shortening of this tissue causes 'bands' which pull the fingers into the palm." Anybody care to see a visual image?

Hmm. Interesting. What a fucking freak. The American Mastodon can sympathize with the author, though, as the AM also has various genetic anamolies. However, the AM prefers to think of these conditions as "physical curios" rather than "develish hell-scars branded by Beelzebub's sceptre". For example, those that are more intimately associated with the Mastodon may remember seeing a patch of roto-rootered skin on his right thigh. This scab-tabulous region has been ravaged by years, literally many months, of eczema related to food allergies. The AM has also been known to frighten small children with his ability to bend his fingers back to unnatural degrees. Then there is the case of his remarkably poor eyesight. In addition, the poor animal has been afflicted with an asthmatic condition since birth which, thankfully, has abated in recent years. And these are merely the physical corruptions. If one were to discuss the 'Don's mental issues, they would run out of typespace far before any comprehensive examination could be completed.

The icing on the proverbial "freak cake", however, is the Mastodon's recent brush with Cholinergic Urticaria.  What is this odd affliction, you may ask.  Well: imagine waking up from a nap and your leg has fallen asleep; you've been resting on it all wrong and now there are imaginary needles poking through your skin.  Imagine now that those needles are extremely hot, and are burrowing into your skin rather than delicately poking at it.  It hurts, sure, but luckily it doesn't itch.  Now please imagine that sensation, but imagine that it itches.  Excellent, you're doing great.  Now, if you will, imagine that not just your leg, but rather your entire body, is covered in these tiny, imaginary hot pokers that itch like crazy and are slowly creeping up your neck.  Next, imagine that the needles are no longer imaginary but instead are small, pimple-sized hives that turn your skin into liquid, only to congeal again as a sort of soft concrete.  Then imagine this sensation occuring any time you walk outside during the daylight hours, or any time you walk more than two city blocks, or any time you get nervous, or generally, any time your body temperature rises the smallest degree.  And finally, imagine visiting a number of "medical experts" who all give you the same line of hokum: I'm sorry, but we don't know what causes this condition, and therefore, we don't know how to treat it.

If you do not feel pity for the American Mastodon at this point, then you have not been paying attention. 

So, anywho-diddly-do, after three weeks of dubious medical advice, the AM was lucky enough to find a lazy merciful MD who had the wits to say, "Ah, the fuck with it," and prescribe a small jarful of anabolic steroids to the AM.  Luckily, the steroids seem to have done the trick without, and scientists often debate this in college laboratories, dimishing the size of his penis.

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