Back after a long hiatus in which I have been a) attempting to write a novel and b) generally pissing away my life…and what, you ask, brings me back?
Grossness, in a word. Don’t ask me how I found out about this or, ok, ask me how I found it, but don’t ask why I know more about it than I would with just a cursory glance.
I’ve long been fascinated with the very strange communities you find in out-of-the-way corners of the web – the Furries, for example. About a month ago, I discovered a new one, when the YouTube threw up (literally) a link to the following, extremely gross video:
If you don’t want to watch it, believe me, I’ll understand. Me, I couldn’t help myself. And then I found there are literally THOUSANDS of videos like this on YouTube.
So I watched some more of them. There are several things I found just absolutely fascinating about these: first, someone decided to take video and put it up on YouTube. But even more interesting is the fact that in most of them (that I’ve seen, anyway), there’s a big crowd of onlookers when the home surgery takes place. Participants regularly make comments like “this is the best day of my life!” as they push and prod on their friends and loved ones to remove the pestilence from their bodies. In the video above, there’s a group of KIDS watching all the fun and providing commentary from the peanut gallery. It’s like these folks are calling up their friends and neighbors to come over and watch them cut open Bob’s cyst. In some of them, the amateur doctors reference other “famous” YouTube cyst removal videos, referring to “Marco” (the patient in the video above) or with jokes about “make a bigger hole” referring to an unfortunate named Lou, who throughout his surgery exhorts his wife to, you guessed it, “make a bigger hole” so she can “clean out ALL that crap.”
Then there are the comments. We all know that YouTube comments represent the worst the web has to offer…except, surprisingly, in the case of these home surgery videos. Comments for these are usually hysterical. Two that show up on a lot of the videos are “I came” and “how did I end up here?” and “I wish I was the one doing the squeezing.” Even funnier are the ones where the commenters are upset by poor video quality, or a video not matching or living up to the promise of its title. Imprecations about the hygiene and skills of the amateur doctors abound. Marco came in for quite a bit of abuse for being a “nasty redneck” and a lot of folks wanted to kill Lou for his repeated admonishment to “make a bigger hole.”
And it’s not just amateurs getting in on the act: there’s an Indian doctor, Yadav Vikram, who has apparently become somewhat of a celebrity in this very strange subculture. Viky does a lot of blackhead squeezing accompanied by commentary like “and now you can see like little worms coming out of the pores” (imagine in Indian-accented English for full effect). Other videos were taken by friends or family members in a clinic or hospital, as real doctors do the honors. In most of the ones I’ve seen, the intention to “put it up on YouTube” is openly expressed by either the practitioner or one of the onlookers, and they’ll often reference having already watched a lot of the videos already posted.
I started wondering, WTF? Am I the only one who hasn’t been watching these things already? And then came the crushing shame and embarrassment of admitting that yes, I am one of the sick fucks who are watching these things NOW.
Some of these things, I shit you not, feature a 70’s porno soundtrack.
Let that sink in for a moment.
So why write about it? For a start, to expose my shame. Shame’s one thing; hidden shame is a much worse one. In my defense, watching these things is far from the worst or sickest thing I could have done, though granted I’m not setting the bar real high.
Why did I watch any of these in the first place? First there’s the freakshow aspect. You can see how Marco sucked me in to begin with – just the still frame for the video shows a man with a TIT on his BACK. I’m powerless to resist something like that, which is why I watched – and made it all the way through – the TV presentation of The Man with the 132-lb Scrotum. How are you NOT going to check into that? And then, I have to admit that there’s something I find oddly satisfying about seeing a big ugly excrescence meet its end and purging a body of an imperfection – though it makes me feel a little dirty to admit it.
I’m certainly not recommending you watch any of these videos, even (or perhaps especially) the one posted above – but you might enjoy clicking through them to the comments.
Who knew that zit, cyst, and boil-popping enthusiasts were the funniest and most literate YouTube commenters?
It’s long, but stick with it. It gets worse and worse, I promise.
Thanks, Perry. At least the tune doesn’t stick with me like that Worst Music Video EVER.
It’s December 1! Let’s do decorations instead of video this year, Kipper…and I’ll just start this off with a whimper instead of a bang.
I recommend you enjoy just one of these at a time, sort of like the treats in an advent calendar. More than a few is just too much to digest.
(Lyta, you have a special expertise here, and I expect you to be an active participant.)
I don’t know why, but toe-sucking has touched my life peripherally in a 20-year cycle, starting when I was around 10.
Beth will remember the first incidence. At the time, the whole idea of “toe sucking” had never even occured to me; I was introduced to the concept by my sister, who is 4 years younger than we are. Here’s what happened: one night, back in the days when we still lived across the street from one another, Beth was spending the night at my house. We were in bed, and my mom was in the bathroom doing her nightly ablutions, while my sister, who was notorious for refusing to go to bed at a reasonable hour, was hectoring her from her room. It went something like this: “Momma….momma…momma…momma…” “Kate, go to sleep!” “Momma…momma…momma…momma…” (sounds of teeth brushing) “momma…momma…momma…momma…momma…….YOU SUCK!!!!” (sounds of bare feet slapping wood floors as mom strode quickly from bathroom to Kate’s room…sounds of hand slapping flesh…shrieking…) “YOU SUCK YOUR TOES!!! I MEANT YOU SUCK YOUR TOES!!!” (sounds of me & Beth trying to control laughter so it won’t be heard).
Anyway, that was my introduction to the whole concept of “toe-sucking.” It wasn’t until some 15 or 20 years later that I learned that it could also be a sexual fetish, and again, I didn’t ask to know this; it was foist upon me. By this time, I was living in Little Rock and the town was abuzz with tales of the Conway Toe-Sucker, an unfortunate young man with an uncontrollable passion for feet. He struck at Baptist Hospital at the time a friend of mine was in for surgery; she and her roommate almost burst their stitches laughing at their jokes about how he was going to jump out and get them while they did their doctor-ordered hallway walks. Some months later, I met the actual Baptist Hospital toe-suck victim quite by accident, when she joined a group of my friends for dinner at a restaurant. By this time, the Toe Sucker had been convicted and this woman had testified at his trial.
I, of course, was full of questions. I asked her how it had come about that this guy was actually able to, you know, get her toes in his mouth. At this, her husband said in a shocked tone, “he had your TOES in his MOUTH?” in the same tone of voice you expect to hear someone say “you SLEPT with him?” Meanwhile, I’m thinking, dude, you’re MARRIED to her, shouldn’t you KNOW about this already?
Anyway, she said that what had happened was that she was in her office when a nice-looking guy had come in and started talking to her; he sat down and then started complimenting her shoes, saying that he used to be a shoe salesman (this was in Al Bundy’s heyday, so…I’m not sure why she didn’t find this ridiculous), and asking if he could take a closer look at them. He put one of her feet in his lap, took off the shoe and…started sucking her toes. When she reacted with alarm, he jumped up and ran out of the office.
After hearing her story, I said, “ok, I understand that it’s kind of icky to have some stranger’s mouth on your foot but…that seems relatively harmless, so why the deal with the trial and sentencing?” She said that he had approached a woman at the Little Rock airport and told her he wanted to cut her feet off and take them home with him. So the court thing had, it turned out, been completely necessary. She went on then about how she just couldn’t understand why this guy was doing this; she said he was good-looking and had a beautiful wife and a couple of kids so it just didn’t make sense that he was running around trying to suck all these women’s toes. I waited a beat, then said, “maybe he just needed to get some STRANGE TOE.” Which, of course, brought down the table.
A couple of years later, I learned that another friend of a friend had been approached by the Toe Sucker; in this case, he struck when she was at a convenience store getting back into her car. He came up and started complimenting her shoes and was crouched by the side of her open car door as she was sitting in the car, and had just gotten around to fondling her feet when she said, “what in the hell are you doing?” This scared him off. Valerie had a much better sense of humor about the whole thing; according to her, it was her own fault for “enticing” him, since as she noted she was wearing open-toed shoes and had just polished her toenails.
That was the last I ever heard of the Toe Sucker until…today. The story has even made the Reuters network – I cannot tell you how PROUD I am, once again, to live here. This is almost as good as the time the WWF announced they would not return to Little Rock because of the fans’ lack of manners and respect. HOW REDNECK does your town have to be for the WWF to refuse to come there? Anyway, I’m pretty sure the current toe-sucking suspect has to be the same guy because…what are the odds?
The other reason I love all things Conway Toe-Sucker related is that it always reminds me of the Baltimore Foot-Stomper from Polyester:
Truth is indeed sometimes stranger than fiction.
We all know that bees make honey, but the question is, how? My mom and I were having a discussion about honey being pasteurized vs. non-pasteurized, and I mentioned that uncorrupted honey had been found in Egyptian tombs, perfectly preserved over thousands of years. But, I said, the bigger question is how do bees make honey? Because, I noted, it can only be one of three things: bee spit, bee puke, or bee poop, since the bees don’t fly around with crockery or other containers to collect all that nectar.
Turns out that it’s both bee puke AND bee spit. The collector bees store nectar in a separate stomach (bees have two) and upon returning to the hive, other worker bees suck the nectar out of the collector bee’s stomachs (puke) and then “chew” it for a half hour (spit). The “chewing” adds enzymes that break down the complex sugars in the nectar into simple sugars more easily digested by bees, and also help keep the honey from becoming contaminated with bacteria. The bees then spread the processed nectar in the honeycomb to allow water to evaporate, a process they speed up by fanning it with their wings.
Hey, at least we haven’t been eating POOP for all these years.
Glad tidings from Henrietta and Merna.