The test came soon enough. I was helping my spouse carry breakfast dishes to the sink when our elbows inadvertently touched. A tangible and mutual jolt surged through us. Suddenly, we were no longer in our kitchen. We had been transplanted to a white-sanded, blue water beach, somewhere in paradise. I felt the old romantic craving. I was vibrantly young again, endowed with control and endurance. No instructions necessary. Like riding a bike.
This rejuvenation was not fleeting. My prowess was constant and I indulged lustily. I had regained the peak and all was sublime.
But there was a difference. There was no respite. Even though the hunger would temporarily subside, my manifestation of romance would not de-energize. It was impervious to control. Cold showers, ice-pack applications had no effect. Suddenly, the basic tasks of every- day functioning were being precluded. Padded clothing proved fruitless. I couldn't leave the house and go to the office unless I assumed the Quasimodo position. It was necessary to feign an accident, requiring me to be wheelchair-bound, in order to mix with the outside world. Initial humor quickly gave way to undiminished terror. Doctors shrugged their hands with the frustration of ignorance. I had inadvertently discovered the immutable object. Only in the privacy of my home, could I dare stand straight, but without any smidgeon of romance. The idyllic Caribbean island was neither present nor desired. My life had disintegrated into phallic hell. Why had I been so reckless? Everything was over. I reeled with anxiety. I was plummeting from a cliff.
And then, just before I hit the rocks, I woke up. It took me ten seconds to convince myself that it had all been a dream. Thank you, Lord. Thank you.
I decided to embrace the measure of who I was. I would accept the ups and downs. The road ahead was still full of romance and I would enjoy it the old fashioned way.
Science, and its future, can be scary.
"You see that kid walking down the street? His father is a pill."