Back Ache – My Prelude to Shingles

So it started with a back ache last week, Thursday June 9th (2021). I was sitting at my desk and it began to hurt. And then it felt like a knot the size of a soft ball forming, all in about an hour. I actually thought it was a potassium imbalance, self diagnosis, because well that’s what your nervous system runs on, Potassium, and Sodium. Warning….Trigger Warning for Millennials…Given my title I think you know where I am going, so this ain’t about bondage. And I am writing this as fast as can before the Vicodin kicks in….

Barron Harkonnen – Dune 1994 (Kennth McMillan)

No worries, no picture on this post to share, except the Barron above, okay you know where I am going. But let’s also describe it for your minds eye. I did take pictures for posterity, but I’ll spare you the horror.

Saturday June 12th. While getting ready for a nice morning breakfast with an old pal whom I haven’t seen because of the fucking pandemic I noticed a small red patch. A few bumps I could see. I wondered, humm? What is this? An STD? Shit it’s the Pandemic, who’s fucking around cause it ain’t me. I know, I was in the San Gabriels looking at springs coming from hidden caves for my job five days ago (yeah I do this sometimes) and one ranger advised me of the Poison Oak. “Look out!” Nahhh..I am fine I said. Yes, that’s it. It’s Poison Oak, “I should have listened.” Ladeedaaa….

Monday, June 14th. I am working and god damnit, the back ache is still with me and the rash is kind of growing faster than expected. Hummm…I have had Poison Oak rashes before, and Poison Ivy, which is worse for me. An East Coast vine….Ladeedaaaa….back ache goes on. Rash is running its course….

Tuesday. June 15th. Shit man, my back was hurting too much, felt like I got kicked by a mule. I will see my doctor yet again, like I am seeing her again for the third time in a few months. WTF? Old age.

Noon. I first check in about my fucking left shoulder bursitis, which I just had a $2K MRI done, Blue Shield came through for once, and she brushes it off like I wasted her time about my shoulder. So Dr. T, I’ll shorten her last name cause in Arcadia you may find my Dr. Tran, jaja. She sees my rash and says oh, no, no! “That’s Shingles.”

I am like “are you sure?’ Duh! Cause I am a doctor too,” I explain. Not really, I go look at caves in the mountains, doctors don’t do that except the lazy ones at Universities. But don’t we all think we are MD’s? Self diagnosing ourselves with Wikipedia or our family’s friend who is a Podiatrist. Don’t get me wrong, I have a Podiatrist, they are worth it. He’s a Scientologist, but what the hell, he’s pretty good at feet. Dr. Tran says, “I am 100% sure.” Smugly. Goes to the kiosk to write up my prescriptions…clikity clack!

So….my back for your minds eye, is filled up with tiny pimples of puss and gross virus awaiting to explode out like a bursting star and contaminate the world. It’s not that scary it ain’t the Plague, but Jesus, what is up with this look? Can it get any uglier? It hurts too, it pulsates, and seems to migrate along my back and side to my side of my chest, blurp-blurp. Like those bumps on the back of a Gremlin when it gets wet, except tiny cute ones! Seemingly having a field day with my, of course left side.

I have cancelled all my of second half of June tying and shunned away everyone. I am Rapunzel in my tree house, house above another, except no prince will save me. I am forsaken again. What next? I got bursitis in my left shoulder which is healing slowly, my back and side, look likes like the Barron from the 80’s Dune. I mean the new Barron looks cool…that new Dune movie I can’t wait for. (by the way, the old Dune has a nice leather bondage scene in it!)

Thursday. June 17th. Today. Life is well, life is fucking sucking ass. I work at home, remote pandemic work at home still, meanwhile the world has gone on except LA, and I sit like my side and back are being consumed by red ants from Brazil. Just eating enough to make me cringe and wonder when 6 o’clock will roll around so I can take a fucking Vicodin. So as I write now, waiting for my pain killer to kick in, hurry, I share my current endeavor dealing with Shingles. It’s a virus that causes Chicken Pox and stay’s with you like every other STD you don’t have or had.. Luckily for me, never have. But it shares its name, Herpes Zoster. See I don’t say I have that, Herpes Zoster, you’re sick man! You’ll run away. I say Shingles….oh yeah, my grandpa gets that! Thanks a lot! Fucker.

Okay, I’ve grossed you out. Not really, you have not seen it, felt it, loved it like me! So I said leave it to your imagination. I will close with this. Imagine ants on your back that well, you can’t shake off. And a view that looks like a page from a medical book you once gazed at out of sick curiosity. Rashes, scares and burns…and oh yeah STD’s….God, imagine this down there. No thanks! No bueno….no…no….no…no….