Saturday, August 27, 2011

Recovering From the Most Devastating Injury Ever, and Some Assorted Other Musings

First of all--why aren't you watching this now?

Please be warned--further graphic medical explanations. Enjoy without krispy kreme's, as Ben Don learned the hard way

So I've now been home like a week. With a few urologist appointments, a surgeon appointment, 4 prescriptions, 1 ultrasound, and more hours of sleep than I had in 5 months in Hong Kong (probably not too much of an exaggeration) under my belt, I can safely say that I AM BORED! In short, it seems to be an unfortunate catch-22 that I desperately want (daresay need) to get back to Asia, and thus need to raise money, but any temp job requires a decent bit of physical labor, which I'm really not in any shape to do at this point. I'm also massively reluctant to find any sort of careery (new word) job at this point, due to the horrible proposition of settling into the suburbs of Chicago. So anyway--an update on what's been going on.

About 4 days ago out of absolutely nowhere I got a pretty shocking case of the chills. It was unlike anything I'd ever experienced--up to that point I'd been feeling better and better every day, and earlier that evening I'd been feeling fine, and then at about 9:30 I just got goosebumps all over before basically passing out. 3 hours later I woke up and started vomiting pretty profusely, which continued throughout the night. What a wonderful edition to the medical issues I'd previously been having. I woke up the following morning and nearly fell over due to the dizziness/lack of balance I was experiencing. This horrendous illness continued for a few days before mysteriously vanishing yesterday/this morning. My theory (which was backed up by my doctor) was that I'd simply taken too much of my pain medication (definitely possible, given the amount of pain that shattered testicles involves). Anyway, got a different pain medication, and now I feel pretty fine in terms of the fluishness.

The urologist told me yesterday that things seem to be moving along pretty well. Arguably the most unsettling good news I've ever heard came when he told me "the left testicle appears to be completely in tact". Well "it appears to be", that's wonderfully inconclusive. He recommended that I continue to do what I've been doing (apart from OD-ing on hydrocodone... disgraceful), and we have another examination in 2 weeks. Again, not the most optimistic report, but could be worse.

Upon arriving with Asia, I met up with one of my best friends from Hong Kong, John Scutt, who was doing the same teaching program I was doing. I was absolutely shocked (and frankly envious) when he showed up with his medium-sized suitcase and nonchalantly told me that "my entire life is in this suitcase". Assuming he was just using a figure of speech, I asked him if literally everything he owned was in that suitcase. "Yeah". I was awestruck, and sort of realized how much absolutely useless crap I have back home. Mind you, a lot of my useless crap (mainly my absurd collection of souvenirs from here, there, and everywhere--photo to come tomorrow morning) is very important to me, but a lot of it isn't. Consequently, to solve my problem of having too much crap, while also solving my problem of needing money to get back to Asia, I'm selling loads of my crap on eBay. Here's the link! And a note on the eBay account name--made the account when I was 15, and since then I have indeed driven a Ferrari several times, so I'm ok with it! Anyway, so I've been keeping myself busy going through my house finding things I can sell. I've thus far sold ~$625 worth of stuff, so not bad! Hopefully by this time next month I'll have a couple thousand dollars plus birthday money to start living in Asia. Incidentally, my wallet currently contains 1,435RMB and $9US, so I guess I've already got a little bit of a start, but nothing grand. Either way, as Douglas MacArthur once said upon leaving (I believe) the Philippines, "I shall return". Despite having had to leave Asia under morbid circumstances, I'm quite convinced (even more so after my week back home) that Asia is where I will be for the long-term.

Speaking of long-term Asian prospects, the job apps are coming along pretty well. I've applied for ~25 jobs in total in Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Shenzhen, mostly for recent graduate roles in international consulting firms, with some finance jobs thrown in for good measure. If they all fail to come to fruition, expect me crashing on a couch near you in HK/SZ within a month or so. If nothing else, I'd have to assume that given the reasonably customized resumes I've been submitting, and the nearly completely customized cover letters, should be enough to not have these companies laugh at my applications. And as we all know, once it gets to the interview stage, I'm either getting the job with immense enthusiasm from the hiring manager, or I'm getting a restraining order put upon me from the company. Not much point in having a mediocre interview. Go big or go home I guess (though my god do I hate that phrase). So we'll see how all that goes.

On a random note, this entire medical issue and having to essentially return home in what I view as shame (though others would probably view as a necessary treatment of a medical emergency) seems to have provided a much-needed crushing blow to my hubristic (which spellcheck says is not a word) tendencies. That is to say, prior to this whole incident, I was far more arrogant about my traveling, intellect, guile, and just life in general, than I probably should have been. So in a strange way, this whole debacle has managed to knock me down a peg. Don't get me wrong, I will still likely waltz through life with an ego larger than it should be, but this somewhat puts things in perspective. Realistically, it also has something to do with the mental hurdle of turning 23--I guess it's more about coming to terms with one's own mortality, something I had never really considered before this whole shinding, and something I very much realize now. So in short, I really do feel the need at this point to apologize to anyone that I've really, truly hurt or offended by being a completely self absorbed and arrogant bastard. In particular a positively lovely Korean princepessa. You know who Yoo are (though you're probably not reading this. Fair call).

In other news, I've recently discovered that I have the ability to see how many people view my blog, from what countries they've viewing it, etc. Which has led me to a few really cool discoveries (basically, blogspot opened up a Pandora's Box when they allowed me to discover this. I love numbers and geography, and when they provide me with color-coded maps of my viewership, it's just asking for trouble):

1) My blog recently surpassed 1,500 views all time. So a big, big, big thanks to all my readers! Obviously, 1,500 views is nothing remarkable, but I'll take it. Really big thank you!
2) My blog is pretty popular in Slovenia. That's the country with the 9th most blog hits, despite being the world's 145th most populous country. So hvala to Slovenians everywhere for being mad-dogs and reading this blog!
3) There appears to be a pretty frequent reader from Russia using to get to this blog. I'd be really really interested in hearing from this Russian (if you do indeed exist, and it's not just me misinterpreting the data), so if you'd be so kind as to drop me an email at, I'd be really interested to hear how you found the blog, what you enjoy about it, what you hate about it, etc. (that goes for everyone who reads this blog, really, do feel free, but the random Russian in particular!)
4) My blog about the testicle injury became the 3rd most viewed post after about 2 days. Go figure :-D

Some other assorted musings:

Manchester United play Arsenal tomorrow. Chances of Arsenal winning that match are probably about 10%, so let's see United go out there and run them over

My team is coming along nicely. I've managed to import a few excellent players, and I'm pretty pleased with the progress

As the baseball season comes to a close, my Chicago Cubs are once again going to miss the playoffs. For my friends abroad that aren't familiar with the Cubs futility, their last championship was...get ready for this...


Yes, 103 years ago was the Cubs' last championship. They haven't even made the championship since 1945.

I'll likely be taking a day-trip this week to visit my brother at Northern Illinois University, he's currently living in a frat house there (phi something or other), and given my immense boredom at home, lack of a job, lack of a drivers' license (wallet being lost in Beijing saw to that), and lack of car insurance (given that I was planning on leaving for >1 year, my parents took me off the insurance), why not just drive an hour out to NIU and back?! So that should be a good change of scenery. Apart from that, things are just continuing to move right along here. It's been a mortifyingly boring week, but I've only spent like $4, so at least I'm saving some coin for Asia. More rants to come as I feel like telling them.

And thanks again for 1,500 views! Pretty cool stuff.

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