Monday, August 08, 2005

"Are you sure you want to close 4 open tabs?"

I was going to kill Fliven. It was his idea to explore the topic of extreme body art (piercing, tattoos, self mutilation) for our Monday webring assignment. And It was his fault that I suddenly had a picture of a penis loading on my work computer screen like a bomb ready to go off.

Hmmm . . . maybe that wasn't the best analogy to use.

Anyway, Fliven had forwarded along an article on the mainstreaming of some varieties of piercing. It was in that article that I read this:

"In Victorian England, Prince Albert pierced his [penis] to facilitate the daily ritual of hiding his privates underneath the grossly tight trousers popular in the 19th century." *

Wait. I knew a "Prince Albert" was slang for male genital piercing, but I didn't know that it actually originated with Prince Albert, consort of Queen Victoria. And hiding his "privates" by piercing them? How did the piercing facilitate this?! Must know. Must know.

Rushing off to Wikipedia to confirm this possibly apocryphal nugget of historical fact, I typed in "Prince Albert England" into the search box and assessed the dozen or so options that came up. At the top was a link to Prince Albert's biography. Pretty harmless, right? Below that was a link to a page on the piercing aspect of this term. Hmmm . . . not exactly work appropriate, but it guaranteed to give me all the information I needed.

Please god, please don't let there be pictures, I silently said as I clicked on the link. Surely Wikipedia wouldn't have pictures of pierced penises, right? As a precaution, I clicked off the browser tab to something innocuous like Gmail, gave myself a few moments to gather my courage, and then clicked back on the Wikipedia browser tab.

Holy shit! There are pictures. I clicked off the tab and back to Gmail, my head darting around to see if anyone was watching my screen, my heart racing. I could feel myself slipping into panic mode, something akin to Threatcon Delta.

Okay, stay calm. Options . . . I needed options! Should I quickly click back to the graphically illustrated Wikipedia article and hit the back button before anyone was the wiser? Or should I abandon Firefox all together and pretend like the penis incident never happened?

Keenly aware of my surroundings and the fact that I have a 2 foot long studio flat screen visible to my bosses and coworkers, I realized I shouldn't tempt fate. With my luck, the moment I clicked back on the Wikipedia tab someone would whip around the corner and discover the picture of the dick in blazing technicolor on my oversized screen.

It was a tense minute and a half, but I took the easy way out and closed out Firefox. Phew. Crisis averted.

* Note the irony that this article comes from a Christian Web site.

For other takes on this topic see:

A Prize In Every Box | Write Again Soon | Wish to See | Bad Apologies | A Little Maryment


Fliven said...

Ha ha ha ha! Sorry! It was not my intention to expose you to such. Well done for making me snarf my Tostitos from laughing, though.

EnnuiHerself said...

Oh my. That was quite, um, educational.

Mr. Bad Apologies said...

ACK! I've tried the same search and nothing came up. Now I am sad.