I have sat here for a while wondering whether I should press Publish on this post given the sensitivity of the content. But social media in the 21st century seems to allow things to be aired that previously wouldn’t have been acceptable – like my testicles for example. Those of a sensitive disposition look away now.

Men of a certain age are told to regularly check their testicles. This has always seemed like pretty redundant advice to me since that’s what most men have been doing since birth anyway. It was during one of these regular root arounds that I discovered a lump. One’s mind immediately fears the worst and conjures up words beginning with C. A visit to the doctor resulted in some diagrams of my internal workings that I haven’t seen since junior school and the assurance that it was probably nothing to worry about but it would be worth getting it properly checked out. So a date with the local NHS hospital was booked.

At the allotted hour I turn up at the hospitals x-ray department and am ushered to a waiting room full of people of all ages, many of whom were clearly not here to have their balls scanned. Over the next 30 minutes or so the waiting room empties and fills again as people get served.

I had by this point already worked out who would be the nurse scanning my boys. He was a young chap who would regularly come out and call someone’s name and then when they stepped forward cheerfully say “Hi! I’m Matt” thrusting his hand out to greet them. Therefore, when my name was eventually called, it was a great surprise to find that it was being called by the young, attractive, brunette. Taking this in my stride I decided that this would be no problem as the NHS has rules about this sort of thing doesn’t it? There would be a male nurse also present to make sure that she didn’t jump me while I was in the room with the crown jewels out.

The nurse’s opening gambit was to tell me to drop my trousers and pants and to “grab hold of my penis, pulling it upwards towards my belly button and hold it tightly there”. So just the two of us then? Yep. I did as requested and lay on the bed. At this point there was lubrication involved but I think that’s a topic for only a man and his nurse.

I have to commend her in that at no point during the examination did she ever sneak a peak at my tackle, her gaze was firmly fixed on the screen in front of her. The downside of this inattentiveness was that her eyes were not on the job in hand, so to speak, and therefore there was a certain lack of delicacy of touch. Her decision to concentrate ahead also meant that she missed the contortions of my face as she tried to push my balls through my body and out my anus.

Given that this was an ultrasound scan there was a great temptation to say something like “is it a boy or a girl?” or “can I get a picture to show the girls at work?” but I decided that these were probably a bit clichéd and so I went with “so did you volunteer for this job or did you just get lucky?” This was met with a polite smile and a revelation that this was one of the easier parts to scan – the mind boggles.

And then the diagnosis. It was a C but in this case a cyst and as the doctor said, nothing to be concerned about. I was able to leave the hospital happy that I was all in working order but slightly stickier around the edges and with walking like John Wayne.