I have never been one to shy away from anything gross or disgusting. I find gross things fascinating and funny. When my cat vomits on the floor my first reaction is ‘oh no!’ and then I bring out the paper towels and clean it up without problems. I do not even wretch. The same when it comes to my patients- shit,piss,phlegm,pus,blood,vomit- its all fine by me.

It was always this way, even as a kid. These things do not have an effect on me. When my friends would be dead drunk and throwing up on a night out, there I would be with a tissue wiping their mouths while they gasp and say thank-you.

Food can be gross too. When my siblings and I were quite young, we had a list of gross foods that my father would insist on eating. As far as I can remember, these were:

Picalily- lets face it, the stuff looks like baby diarrhoea.

Branston pickles- resembles geometrically shaped poo.

Sauerkraut- extra long maggots

Runny fried eggs- jaundice

Tinned sausages- ok, I just won’t go there

Kippers

Marmite

There are definitely more, if my siblings read this I am sure they can add to the list. However, the biggest problem with my father’s gross-food affinity was when he was done and left us the empty plate. The fact of the matter is, that plate would never be quite so empty. The runny egg would be smeared everywhere, aswell as the reminants of picalily and a few flecks of branston pickle. Ofcourse, there would be HP sauce or ketchup thrown into the mix, just to round things off. Basically, it would look like someone with a particularly badly blocked comon bile duct died on the plate.

And the argument ensues. Who was going to wash daddy’s disgusting plate? I did it last time! No you didn’t, you liar! We’ll pick it up together! I’m not falling for that one again! Do it, or else I will make you lick it! Ewww gross argh!

And this could easily last a good thirty minutes, while the plate sits there, congealing. I would finally give in and pick up the plate and wash it. It would be over in a few minutes.

However, there is now a gross food in my father’s repetoire that I actually like and that is caponata, or otherwise known as ratatouille. Those greyish chunks in the red oily tomato sauce- it reminds me of after-birth. My hubby had the idea of putting it on dough to make a sort of pizza and it was really delicious!

I guess it is almost a gift that nothing disgusts me. Ofcourse, this does not always go down well with some of my friends. I really make an effort to hold back and not give detailed and graphic descriptions of clinical scenarios involving bodily juices. Ofcourse, I have those very few friends who actually ask me for disgusting clinical details and once that door has been opened, I come alive. Strange? Perhaps, but as I grow older I realise I need to stay true to myself. I have accepted it. And if anyone out there would like to discuss something gross, lets meet over coffee, scones and branston pickle and cheddar cheese sandwiches 🙂

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