Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Flaming Genitals

Now, I know it has been a while since my last post (Purple Nurples excluded). I have had a couple of ideas for posts to write, but I never got around to sitting down and typing them out. I guess I could, but the inspiring events are no longer fresh. Anyway, I am not going to let that happen this time! Today I have a harrowing tale for you regarding, well, flaming genitals.

It all starts with the decision to make some dinner; specifically beef and pepper stir fry. Well, I don't like my beef and peppers supper spicy, but I do like a little bit of bite. So along with the bell peppers and beef I chopped up a couple of Serrano peppers. As some of you may know (I am looking at you JT) the substance that makes anything hot/spicy is a chemical called capsaicin. Capsaicin is a rather sticky substance in that it isn't really water soluble (hence why drinking water doesn't help the burn). After chopping the peppers I forgot to clean my hands, and went off to eat my tasty dinner.

Here is where it gets painful. After eating dinner I was relaxing in my chair, watching the Mariners rally back from a 3-1 deficit. Sometime during the rally I got an itch. It is an itch I am going to guess most men are familiar with and any woman that has lived with a man longer than 3 months has probably witnessed. For reasons unknown to me or modern science, a man's junk just itches some days. Most days when such an itch is scratched it is a pleasurable thing. If not quite near the top of simple pleasures, scratching that particular itch is certainly in the top 50. Most days. Scratching that particular area when your hands have capsaicin on them is not pleasurable.

Let me say this. I have experienced a lot of pain in my life. I have taken several direct hits to the crotch, including on nasty kick and a surprise frisbee. I have sprained my ankle, I have bruised my ribs, I have fallen off ladders and hit my head with the claw side of a hammer. I have even knocked myself out on the desk in my room back in Henderson. I will tell you now, capsaicin on the junk is easily one of the 5 most painful things I have ever experienced. It starts as this gentle heat and you start to wonder what it is. Within 30 seconds my eyes were welling with water and I could barely breath. Worst of all there isn't a whole lot you can do. Obviously just water won't work. Capsaicin is (I think) alcohol soluble but I sure wasn't going to waste good scotch or Guiness (the only booze in the house at the moment) on my burning junk. Then I remember that the Scoville Rating of a pepper is determined by diluting the capsaicin with sugar water until there is no detectable heat left. Not remembering that dairy (i.e. Milk) could also be effective I went ahead and rinsed off with sugar water, over and over again. The heat did subside, but I was then left with another problem. You are all smart I am sure you can see what the problem was. Exciting night.

PS> I really do wish this was an April Fools joke. It is not.


Joseph said...


Most painful experience of my life: Dead Sea saltwater in my eye. And, given that I was lying on my back, hands covered with saltwater, there was really nothing I could do about it besides lie there, float, and hope that my tears washed the hurt away.

Eric said...

We have a similar thing over here in Cambridge. We call it "VD", which is short for Vindaloo Disease. This is because the story involves someone who ordered the spiciest thing at an Indian restaurant, then not washing his hands before going to the bathroom. He was also crying for the remainder of the meal. Good times.

Sydney said...

Capsaicin + contact removal = crazy painful. Capsaicin residue still on contacts in morning + contact insertion = crazy surprising painful. Also, both engendered a great deal of swearing and crying, and then a little laughing at how TOTALLY RETARDED it is cut up hot peppers bare-handed when you wear contacts. And then more swearing. This is why Pete is the Pepper Master.

Also, the capsaicin is (to my knowledge) almost entirely in the membranes, so if you strip those out without touching them, you'll get much less Ball Burn.

Next time: try pineapple juice. Anytime I eat something super spicy at home these days, I make sure to have a can of pineapple handy. It has a ton of sugar, delicious flavor, and I swear that sourness has its own spicy-defeating properties. Oh, also, protease, a protein-digesting enzyme. So maybe that helps, although capsaicin is not a protein.

Oh man, the wikipedia article on this is SO interesting!! I have learned so much!


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