Pigs have staying power. Since time immemorial they’ve been considered dirty, foul-smelling and munchers of muck.
They’ve managed to survive the merciless onslaught over centuries from clerics prohibiting their adherents from relishing the succulent pork roasts, not forgetting chewing the cud on mouth-watering crackling.
Evidently there’s unawareness or ignorance among vintage cultures that modern farmers have cleaned up their act and the word pigsty has lost its malodorous connotation coined in an era when, ironically, even humans ponged to high heaven. Some still refuse Mum.
And currently porkers have upped the ante by entering the medical field. Their tissue makes effective aortic valves for humans.
For me. Yes, it’s being custom-made to replace the worn-out one that’s been leaving me breathless. The valve is also made from cow or human tissue, but I opt for my favourite dish in preference to beef. And as I’m impartial to a cannibalistic diet, I reject the human one.
To test whether my arteries would cope with another operation (I underwent a quadruple by-pass a few years ago) an angiogram becomes necessary. This allows the surgeon Dr A H to insert a piano wire into the spleen until it kisses the arteries.
To take my mind off the thought of a wire poking around, and the huge scanners moving hither and thither a millimetre from my nose, I concentrate on the repartee between surgeon and assistants.
Obviously referring to the scanners, the surgeon instructs, “Give it three degrees to the left. Cool. Hold it there for a second”. This brings the one scanner brushing my eyelashes, unleashing an ugly expletive. But luckily the next step drags away the dreaded monster.
“Now feed in 60g of Bilokor. Cool. The artery is expanding nicely. OK. Now increase the dosage for the real test. YES. The artery isn’t exploding”.
If the artery had exploded, what would’ve happened to me? Probably leaving just a wet patch?
The surgeon turns to me. “Your arteries are beautiful. A real work of art”.
Sounds like I’m an art gallery with an enthusiastic critic in toe.
I should’ve asked him for a selfie to have a painting done. “Awesome Artery” would’ve made Sotheby’s for sure.
The procedure ends without a hitch. Not surprising – Dr H the best! And assisted by professional and dedicated theatre medicos. Not forgetting the fabulous front line hospital staff. Thank you!
I can now await the finished product with confidence. Then watch me fly. Oink.