The Stool Sample

5913504367_a8bcc86ddf_z

A few weeks ago, I wrote about pooping in Korea. The post was a great success. The immediate effect of this popularity was a lot of new followers to my blog. That buzz of activity has long since passed, but the long-term consequence of my poop post’s popularity is that I now seem to get a lot of new poop people popping to my page.

In short: a lot of people seem to be searching on Google for poop and finding their way to my website. Handily, I can use the WordPress statistics tool to find out what search term they’ve used to arrive at my site. Some of these search terms are so purile, so disgusting, so shameful that they shouldn’t ever be shared.

Butttttt they’re also quite amusing. So I’m going to share some of them anyway.

pooping” – Simple. Classic. A person that just wanted some normal old pooping. Possibly a 6 year old who thinks they’re hilarious.

guys pooping together” – Nothing says bromance like having a poop with your friend.

see my girlfriend pooping” – This guy is so proud of his girlfriend he wants to share her poops.

japanese pooping close up” – Somebody is sick of watching Japanese people pooping from afar.

korean big booty girl pooping” – A man who really knows what he likes. Japanese girls with small booties probably disgust him.

Now it would be so easy to mock these people (I kind of just did) but chances are that if you’re reading this you’re probably a fan of pooping in some way. Let me say first – good for you. You know what you like and you’re not afraid to search Google for it.

Secondly, let me also apologise, you clearly came to my blog looking for sexy pooping, but instead you found a silly story about trying to relieve oneself in a kindergarten. It pains me that my blog may have led to disappointment, so let me make it up to you by sharing another true story of poopage. Let us call this tale:

The Stool Sample

A few days ago, I found myself arriving in Bangkok to begin a holiday. Due to needing an x-ray for a visa, I found myself at a popular hospital for foreigners named the Bumrungrad Hospital. This is a real name, I assure you, the fact that the first three letters of the name create the word “bum” is a complete coincidence.

Instead of opting simply to get an x-ray, I decided it would be better to get a full check-up. I’d never been for a check-up before and Bangkok seemed like the perfect place to do it. Perfect because it’s cheap and you pay very little for the best standard of care. Bum Hospital is state of the art and looks more like a hotel than a hospital. You’re calmly led around the building by frightfully clean nurses and given a pair of soft robes to wear while you have tests done to your body as well as various bodily fluids.

The most dreadful test of all, is – strangely – the stool sample. My girlfriend and I noticed the stool sample as soon as we booked our check-ups. Blood sample: easy. I could do a blood sample in my sleep! (My girlfriend literally did do one in her sleep – she passed out while they were doing it and woke up a few moments later wondering where she was.)

A stool sample on the other hand is a different matter. One cannot just poop on command like some dancing (or pooping) monkey. It’s hardly like we’re dogs that can poop on command.

Making our way to the hospital, my girlfriend was in a worry about the stool sample. I assured her they weren’t going to force it out of her. “We’re paying for this check-up. If you don’t want to do it you don’t have to. It’s hardly like they’re going to grab us and squeeze it out of us!” If we couldn’t go, we couldn’t go.

So we made our way high up in the hospital to check-in for our check-up. After writing some paperwork a kind receptionist motioned us over to some luxurious leather chairs. After 10 minutes of waiting, we wondered if we were actually meant to be waiting at all. Suddenly a doctor sat down beside me and introduced herself. My immediate thought was that we were going to have a chat about my current health. It wasn’t until I heard the words “medical research” that I realised this had nothing to do with our check-up.

It was quickly explained to us that we were perfect candidates for a research study into foreigners visiting Thailand. The research was being used to study the effects that travelling in Thailand had on the stomachs of tourists. It all sounded so important and reasonable. When she asked “Would you like to take part?” I jumped at the opportunity. It’s not every day you’re asked to take part in important research.

We started to fill out some forms, it was all going well. Then she said in a nonchalant manner: “OK, I’ll go get you a big cup for your stool sample.” My girlfriend squirmed in her seat uncomfortably. The pressure of giving a vanilla stool sample was almost too much to bear. Now that we had to give a stool sample in order to help mankind – well it was enough to give a person stage fright.

Knowing my girlfriend felt discomfort, I spoke up. “Ah, we’ve never given a stool sample before, so we’re unsure about what…” The doctor smiled “Don’t worry! I will give you a very big cup! Very big! It will be very very easy to collect. Usually they just give you a tiny cup – wait a moment.”

The doctor rushed off without letting us explain otherwise. She came back with a tiny cup. The size of the cups they use for free samples at the supermarket. “See!” she continued “This cup is very small. I will give you a big cup. Very big cup. Then you can just transfer from the big cup to the small cup.” She nodded at us with eagerness.

By this point my girlfriend was squirming so much that I’m sure the leather chair was getting polished by her bum. I interjected awkwardly “No, you see. We’ve never given a stool sample before so I’m not sure if we’ll even be able to go.” “It’s very easy. You just go over to the bathroom over there.” “No, I mean. We’re not sure we can go.” “You go over there, in bathroom.”

Ah the pleasures of communicating with somebody who isn’t a fluent English speaker.  “No. You see…I don’t think we’ll be able to…release.” I made a hand movement. A sort of slow wave downwards. Suddenly the doctor realised what we meant.

Her enthusiasm didn’t falter though, she jumped up. “Oh, please, but you must try! It is very important. Please try. I will give you a big cup. Very big cup!” She ran off and came back with two large paper cups with lids that I’m pretty sure she’d stolen from an ice cream shop. If the cups were a size at Coldstone Creamery they would be “Gotta Have It!” The perfect words to describe how the doctor felt about our poop.

8427420633_c38c13a881

Still, it seemed as though the doctor didn’t understand. It wasn’t about the size of the cup! No matter how many protests we made, she would continue to give us a rousing dose of enthusiasm followed by the mention of a giant cup. The doctor was so enthusiastic about our poops that we decided to give it our best shot – although my girlfriend later confessed she wouldn’t even bother to try.

The doctor walked us through the rest of our forms, until we had signed off on being a piece of her medical research. “Now, when you collect your sample. Please try to make it as large as possible!” She pointed to her little finger. “If it is this big, that’s no good. I need a big sample because I want to do many tests on it. Please please please try to fill the cup.” She pleaded. “Please, just try your best! But if it’s the size of a pea, it isn’t enough!”

The poop talk was not over there though. She then started to ask us about our pooping habits. How many times per day? Has there been blood in your stool? What does your poop smell like? It was the frankest most open conversation I’d ever had about my poop.

Soon she got to the question: have you had diarrhea in the last two weeks. I thought for a second “Maybe, I have. I’ve been a bit stressed out and I think I ate something bad so I’ve had a bad stomach.” I thought that would be the end of it, but she pressed me further. How many times did you use the toilet? How long did it last? What was the consistency of your stool?

Eventually she came to a conclusion “I don’t think you had diarrhea” she said embarrassed at my expense. “Well, I don’t know…I had a bad stomach…” “Usually diarrhea is loose or watery.” “Ok, well, what do you mean by ‘loose’?” We spent the next five minutes arguing the definition of “loose”. Me adament that I’d had diarrhea, her sadly telling me that I hadn’t. Eventually I conceded defeat as she probably knew more about it than I did.

Once we were done she thanked us with such passion that I decided I’d try my hardest to get her a poop, even if it meant sitting on the toilet for a week. As she shook our hands to thank us, I leaned forward in the leather chair. The material stuck to my legs and as often happens on leather furniture it created a sound not unlike a fart.

The doctor looked at me and before I could protest that it was the chair making a noise she smiled happily.

“Doesn’t sound like you’ll have any troubles at all.” The curry from the night before ensured that I didn’t. Two hours later, I sat with a detailed medical report in my hand. What a wonder modern medicine is, where you can have your blood, urine and poop taken and an hour later

My stool report was conclusive.

Color: brown
Consistency: soft

The report let me know one thing with complete certainty.

I’d had a poop.

photo

Photo 1: Chocolate Soft Ice Cream by Michael Himbeault
Photo 2: Gotta Have it by iameyee
Photo 3: Taken within Bumrungrad hospital on the back of a toilet cubicle door.

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “The Stool Sample”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s