RICHARD ORD: How an X-ray surprise put a spring in my hobble

As personal compliments go ‘that’s a great big toe’ is possibly the best I’m likely to receive for some little time.
Surprises aplenty in the X-ray department.Surprises aplenty in the X-ray department.
Surprises aplenty in the X-ray department.

Of course, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, which is why I can take some encouragement in this case as the beholder was someone with insight into the quality of human body parts.

Alas, she wasn’t a fashion photographer for Vogue, but a hospital radiographer.

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As I mentioned in an earlier column, I’ve been having trouble with my right foot. More specifically the big toe. It hurts like hell.

A quick limp to the doctors revealed arthritis as the cause. The doc was in little doubt, but said I could have an X-ray if I wanted. Why not? In for a penny and all that...

Clutching at straws is one of my specialities. While the doc was certain of the cause, I clung onto the hope that maybe it was an old, previously undetected, injury that was causing the problem.

‘Hey, Mr Ord, turns out that wasn’t the obvious sign of the ageing process taking its inevitable toll on your increasingly feeble body after all, but a cracked bone you’ve been carrying for years. It’s only your perfectly formed foot structure and impressive resistance to pain that has hidden it from us medical professionals.’

Dream on, Ord.

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It was, however, that stubborn refusal to accept the inevitable that earned me the aforementioned compliment when I went for the X-ray.

The radiographer (I really should have got her name) asked me to move my foot about and extend my toe for a couple of X-rays.

‘Ooh, not everyone can move their toes like that,’ she told me.

As she took the final X-ray and paid the big toe compliment, she even called over her line manager and pointed at the image on the screen. ‘Look,’ she said. Her boss nodded. ‘Nice,’ she said.

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Another compliment! I’d have joyfully skipped out of the x-ray unit, if it wasn’t my arthritic toe. It did, however, put a spring in my hobble!

On that note… My eldest son went for an X-ray once and teased his friends with the results. When asked how it went, he said: ‘Not good.’

As you might expect, a slew of concerned messages soon arrived in his inbox. He thanked them and revealed to them the result of his X-ray. ‘Turns out my body is haunted by a scary skeleton,’ he said. ‘Got the picture to prove it too.’

Funny guy.