Last evening, I made red beans and rice for dinner. For a kick, I added a fresh jalapeno from my garden to the pot. I deseeded, sliced, diced, and chopped. I was very careful to thoroughly wash my hands after handling the pepper. I’m no boob. I watch the Food Network. I know it can be dangerous if you wipe your eyes or nose with jalapeno-y fingers.
Dinner happened, and it was good. Dishes were cleared, and the kitchen was cleaned. A DVR-ed episode of American Horror Story was watched, and all was well.
After watching his “story,” my partner retired for the evening. He is one of those early to bed, early to rise
freaks people, leaving me the only person awake in the house. The kitchen was clean, and there was no laundry to be done. For those of you who live with others, you know what a treat it is when this happens. It was that rare evening when the chores are finished, you brought home no work from the office, you have no email to check, and, most importantly, you have sole control of the remote control. I was in heaven.
The first thing I did, of course, was strip down to my underwear. It’s my firm belief that in order to be truly comfortable, the most clothing a man can wear is a loose-fitting pair of underwear. I stretched out on the couch, and began clicking through the hundreds of channels the satellite dish strapped to our roof sends to our television. Once my interest was piqued, I settled in for a good evening of bad television.
The next thing I did may seem odd to some women reading this. Maybe not. If you have lived with any man—a brother, son, father, husband, boyfriend—you will understand. And I know all the men reading will relate. As my mind started chilling out and my body began relaxing, I stuck my hand into the front of my underwear. Not with any crude intention, mind you, I was just holding my stuff. This is a primal need every man has, this need to be in physical contact with his member. I don’t know why, but when the male mind is cleared and drifting away, holding our penis helps anchor us. By the way, if you are male and you say you don’t do this, you are lying. I know it, you know it, and now everyone else knows it, liar.
After five minutes or so, I began to feel a strange sensation in my nether region. I removed my hand, thinking this would some how fix it. It didn’t. The strange sensation quickly developed into a full-on warmth. The warmth then progressed to just plain hot. Hot soon became hot as fire. Lying on my couch, I began to panic. Of all my body parts, this one was probably the most sensitive, certainly the most spoiled.
It finally occurred to me that although I thought I had thoroughly washed my hands after handling the jalapeno, I had apparently left some residue on my digits. I had now pepper poisoned my penis. I yelled for Andy, but he was fast asleep and couldn’t be bothered to come help, so I did what any Southern boy would do—asked mom for help.
Since getting an iPhone6, mom only communicates by text. My sister and I have a “group text” with her that we keep open so we don’t have to repeat ourselves over and over, and we can each have a witness to vouch that my mother has been “kept in the loop” on family matters. Knowing my sister was also in on the text, all hope of privacy and dignity immediately were dissolved.
I texted my situation: “911. I cut up a jalapeno tonight. Washed my hands, but it didn’t take. I have touched my bird, and I am now dying. Please help.”
The first several responses: “OMG!” “Dear God!” and “You have got to be kidding.”
Finally, my sister told me to stick “it” in something like a bowl of ice. Mother said milk was a good remedy for spicy things, so she suggested I use a glass of milk. At this point, I was desperate and willing to try anything. I went to the refrigerator and realized I only had almond milk. I decided I had better check with mom to make sure that was OK. Mother was fairly confident it needed to be a dairy product, therefore, almond milk would not work. I was secretly a little happy because that shit is expensive, and I would hate to waste a glass even if it was too cool off the red-hot poker that was now my penis.
Sis then asked if I had any other type of dairy, say sour cream. Mom agreed that would work. I went back to the fridge to discover the sour cream had been turned into ranch dip a few days earlier. Although there was plenty, I just couldn’t force myself to slather up with ranch dip. It seemed very Mickey Rourke in 9 1/2 weeks, and I didn’t like that movie.
Finally, I decided to just soak in the bathtub. I then left a cool washcloth on my junk for a little while longer before bed. After an hour or so, the pain started to subside, and I decided I would live to see another day.
I will leave you with this advice. Hot peppers are mean little hombres. Don’t trust them. Watch your back around them. They are clingy. They like to linger. But, if you do touch them with your bare hands, do yourself a favor and keep your hands to yourself…and above your waist.