“Tubby, or not tubby: that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them? To die: to sleep;
No more; and by a sleep to say we end
The heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to, 'tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wish'd. To die, to sleep;
To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub.”
Now, I have no idea what most of this means, but obviously what his is referring to in the end and by, if I may say so, an incredibly circuitous and loquacious, peripunctal route, is how annoying it is to be fat and the chafing of various parts of your anatomy that ensues.
I first encountered this on a walking tour of the Lake District in the company of my good friends Ian and Dan. I know they were my good friends at this point because, as I mentioned in another blog, the school I went to had all boys referred to by their surnames and it took several years for me to get out of this habit.
‘Wotcher, Salmon?’ I would say. ‘Swap you three Sherbet Dips for twenty five of your Soor Plooms.’
‘Get lost, Hunt!’ he would reply. ‘White and I have already eaten all of them. We been down the tuck shop and eaten all of their stock. Now we are going to the San for oor stomachs to be pumped free of toxins. Then we have to do two sheets each for Grabber Major. Chiz.’
Then off he run, pretending to be a messerschmidt and dive bomb the skool dog. He have a face like a squished tomato but his pater own half of Fylde so it is important to stay in his good books.
This is not actually what my skool days were like but in the use of our surnames for so long it felt a lot like this.
Anyway as we did the walking tour of the Lake District, following in the footsteps of William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge and (apparently, according to Wikipedia) Robert Southey (though I’m inclined to say maybe Beatrix Potter) I developed a certain amount of inter-thigh discomfort due to the constant rubbing of my fat thighs.
This may have been made considerably worse by the constant drizzle which accompanied our walking tour. I should perhaps say that the three of us were not in any way inspired by the great Lake poets. Our literary inspirations at the time were probably H.P.Lovecraft and J.R.R. Tolkein. So were probably hoping for less of this…
Anyway, I got increasingly miserable on this walk, which only lasted for a few days, because I increasingly had to adopt a cowboy-style walk in order to accommodate the increasing blistering and swelling of my inner thighs where they were constantly rubbing.
In the eighties corduroy trousers were all the rage…
What, they weren’t? Are you sure? I’m pretty sure they were all the rage. Or maybe they were cheap. Or maybe my mum told me they were all the rage because they were cheap.
For some reason I really liked them. I had loads of corduroy trousers of all sorts of different colours. But I’m pretty sure that the corrugated effect contributed to the friction on my inner thighs. I ended up with lots of pairs of trousers, worn through in the inter-thigh area. And there was also something peculiarly smelly about it. I’m guessing, now, that this was because my inflamed skin was exuding in some way. It was pretty revolting anyway. And I apologise if you were eating your dinner. Maybe I need to give warnings?
I was in lots of pain. Due to the damp weather, corduroy trousers, the bloody Lakes poets (and by extension, ALL poets, meaning I can justify my inclusion of Shakespeare at the start of this blog), Cthulhu and his globbering minions, and lastly, as a minor contributing factor… being a bit of a chubster.
Years later, after much chafing, I developed skin tags which it is so tempting to remove, either with a quick slash of a scalpel, or judicious use of thread/rubber band… but I am pain averse so I shan’t do it. Yes, skin tags are another consequence of being overweight because they can be triggered by rubbing.
It’s a wonder I ever went back to the Lake District, but I did…