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How To Have Tourette’s Part 21 – Kapow! Sock! Wham!

I’ve spent the last 24 hours tottering around with tiny little Geisha steps. I put the toe of one size 14 next to the heel of the other, then kind of lurch forward and catch myself before reversing position.

The recent triumphs of 8400 seconds, Sitting Here In Silence, and The Science of Happiness have all taken a painful backseat for the moment.

A morning like any other

I was in the elevator at work, staring at my lovely reflection in the burnished doors. Perhaps I smiled at myself. Perhaps I was feeling a bit too smug. A little preemptive on the celebrations.

Perhaps  I had simply grown too beauteous for this world.

Whatever it was, my brain had had enough of me.


It sent my knobby right fist careening into my exquisite man-bits, and dropped me onto the floor of the elevator. My fist is about the size of a really big grapefruit. The grapefruit shall always vanquish the grape in high-velocity combat, so let it be written. It was my early day when I’m at work an hour before anyone else, and all I could think was:

Please don’t stop on another floor.

It was a scene I really didn’t want to explain to one of our wonderful custodians.

The doors opened on my floor and I crawled to my desk, groaning like a super-handsome zombie.

Then it happened again. The fibers of the library’s carpet looked really odd, a scant millimeter from my eye.

A long day

By four PM when I left work, I was a mess. I’d puked a couple of times, which all of the guys out there will understand. I tried sitting on my hands when I could, but I had to spend most of the day typing. Typing with your nose drastically decreases your WPM, believe you me. ( I didn’t’ really try it)

“Excuse me sir, I’m looking for a copy of Twilight? Might you help me?”

“I might, but first, wham! No, it’s cool, come back!”

I don’t know what the lesson is. Maybe there’s not one. So I’m just going to quote something that I like and hope it fits in:

“Victory destroys experience.”

This is something Dan John says a lot. Meaning, “A big win can make you forget all of the lessons that finally resulted in that big win.”

I’ve been doing so well that I figured that, while I might have the occasional relapse or really horrible day, it was going to be all uphill from there. Actually, I still figure that, but it doesn’t mean that this doesn’t hurt.

I can take a punch in the face like nobody’s business. A punch in the groin? Still working on it.

And by the way, ladies, everything still works. (And by ladies, I mean Janette!)

Enormo The Geisha

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Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Matt at How To Get A Grip April 28, 2010, 2:29 am

    Ouch! I feel your pain, amigo. Keep the ice-pack handy.

    But I doubt that victory will be making you forget your lessons. You’re writing them all down, after all.

    And, from what you share, it seems to be three steps forward, one step back. Which is progress.

    • Josh Hanagarne April 28, 2010, 9:28 am

      Ice pack, check. I should probably make some ice shorts.

  • Joy Tanksley April 28, 2010, 4:55 am

    You know what I think? This just means you’re on the verge of a major breakthrough. Seriously. In my personal experience, a big old setback often happens right before I tear down a big old wall in my life. And since I’ve discovered that, I’ve seen it in so many other people – people who are battling way more than I am.

    You’re amazing, Josh. Thanks for your honesty and wit.

    • Josh Hanagarne April 28, 2010, 9:28 am

      It’s not a setback. My tics are still horrible about 60% of the time. It’s just business as usual. That doesn’t mean I’m not anticipating another breakthrough, though:)

  • Eric | Eden Journal April 28, 2010, 5:19 am

    Josh, I found something that may help. It’s time for some Iron Egg Training. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Js_3bIni52I

    Good luck, and let me know how it works out.

  • Todd April 28, 2010, 6:21 am

    Cup check – fail! Josh, I never know how to feel when I read these posts. On the one hand, what you describe makes me ponder the complexities of the brain, and what would make it short circuit in such a way. On the other hand, you convey your point in such a way that I find humor in your pain.

    It’s like some guy taking a nut shot on tv. We respond with an “Oh man!” in between gasping laughter. What’s wrong with us?

    • Josh Hanagarne April 28, 2010, 9:25 am

      I know. I know. And don’t worry about laughing. It happened to me and I still think it’s a hilarious story. I made up for it in the gym that night. Moved 150,000 lbs in two hours. That was the giant, brutish silver lining:)

  • Joshua Black | The Underdog Millionaire April 28, 2010, 8:11 am

    First if all, don’t you dare look at any of this business as a single step back. Remember that you have accomplished things so far the most people with tourrettes would never dream of trying.

    Second, mother nature likes to gives us a little whack in the heuvos every now and then to make sure that we are still paying attention. There is no backseat, just a bad day and we all have those.

    Third, speaking from personal experience of teaching children karate for many years and getting kicked square in the peaches, try jumping up and down right after that happens. It makes the vomit feeling go away much faster and might take your brain off of trying to punch you again.

    How long did it take you to put on that nice kimono?

    -Joshua Black
    The Underdog Millionaire

    • Josh Hanagarne April 28, 2010, 9:24 am

      It didn’t take me long to put it on, but it did take a while for me to sew it.

  • Heather April 28, 2010, 8:29 am

    Hey Enormo, may I use some of your lipstick? That’s a rockin’ shade of retro pin-up red, man!

    It’s because you’re too sexy for that elevator. THAT’S what it is!

    Hope the rest of the week goes better.

  • Patricia Pentecost April 28, 2010, 8:31 am

    I’m usually the quiet one…skipping the comments on just about every post. And I’m kind of new here, but in the last few weeks I’ve found so much inspiration in your blog. So I just wanted to say hi and pay my dues today. Anyone that can take a punch to the groin – or several – and still find humor and good grace is a superhero in my book. You are hope incarnate. Thank you for sharing.

    • Josh Hanagarne April 28, 2010, 9:24 am

      Thanks Patricia! I’m not quite sold on being “hope incarnate” yet:)

      You can laugh or you can cry, right? Laughing is more fun. I’m very glad that you’re getting something out of my antics.

  • Larissa April 28, 2010, 8:58 am

    Wow. Keeps life exciting, doesn’t it? 😉 But really, the fact that you were able to stay at work for most of the day is a victory. Take care, Josh. 🙂

    • Josh Hanagarne April 28, 2010, 9:23 am

      Exciting and then some. If I didn’t need the money, I probably would have crawled home:)

  • ami April 28, 2010, 9:39 am

    Forgive me Josh, for I have laughed. Multiple times. I can’t help it, I keep imagining you eyeballing the carpet fibers and thinking some philosophical thought and I laugh again. But with tears in my eyes.

    Is it ok for a librarian to wear a cup to work?

    I’m with Joy – I think it’s your rebel body shouting “You ain’t the boss of ME!” before giving up. Keep on swimming, keep on swimming.

    • Josh Hanagarne April 28, 2010, 11:10 am

      I laughed the whole time I was writing it, even though it still hurt. It still hurts today and I’m laughing. Funny is funny–doesn’t matter if it happened to me or not.

  • Aled April 28, 2010, 9:39 am

    Hey Josh,

    Hell, only you know how difficult it is for you to go without the ticks, but I think you’re doing a great job.

    There’s bound to be something that comes along every now and again to hit you in the balls (sorry!)!

    Keep at it!


  • Yusuf Clack April 28, 2010, 1:27 pm

    Josh, man. My heart really goes out to you. This must have been difficult to take. One thing is for sure. You are one hilarious writer and your descriptive powers rival your heroics moving weight. I was cringing and laughing at the same time. Thanks for taking your pain bringing others joy with it.

    • Josh Hanagarne April 28, 2010, 2:10 pm

      You’re welcome, Yusuf. Today’s been much, much better.

  • Jessica Marie April 28, 2010, 4:04 pm

    Have you considered buying and wearing a cup for the next few days? As a girl I don’t know much about them (comfort-wise in wearing one) but it’s got to be better than being in such pain

  • Boris Bachmann April 28, 2010, 5:22 pm

    Sitting around w. other men and exchanging “strikes-taken-to-the-testicles” stories is always a good time… Was this before or after your training?

  • Daisy April 28, 2010, 5:50 pm

    A super-handsome zombie – indeed. According to my husband, a sack of frozen peas is a great healing tool.

  • Ethan April 28, 2010, 9:10 pm

    Ouch! That story made ME hurt.

    Been reading for a while, but this is my first time posting. I have Tourette’s too (granted, to a much less extreme), and am also an avid weightlifter and aspiring author. My Zen teacher likes to tell me that you’re not fighting to defeat your problems in life. Rather, you’re constantly bettering yourself to the point where they disappear on their own.

    Keep on plugging man.

  • Neil April 29, 2010, 4:51 pm

    I don’t any man can ever get used to a shot to the groin. Even a self-inflicted one!

    I’ve been following this series for a while. You know, a lot of people “write-off” kids with Tourette’s or try to skirt around the whole thing. I’m amazed by what you’re doing here. This should be required reading for any Special Ed teachers out there.

    Amazing stuff, Josh.

  • Marti D April 29, 2010, 6:11 pm

    Bummer about the tics, but awesome about moving the weights. 150,000…. WOW!!

    Hang in there!