Condoms and Cups

I always hated playing baseball. I found it boring and frustrating, and frankly, I just wasn't very good. Nonetheless, ever since I was a kid and up through my sophomore year of high school, I only took one spring off, and It wasn't by choice. I was cut from the JV team my freshman year of highschool. I was pissed at first, then bored, but then I got a girlfriend and started having sex. It was a welcomed change wearing nothing around my crotch as opposed to the worst protective sports gear ever invented. As any guy will tell you, ladies, the sports cup is to testicles as high heals must be to toe bunions.

The next spring rolled around and I obviously didn't plan to try out for the team, but after a pregnancy scare, my girlfriend got freaked out and broke up with me. Baseball just felt like a way to get my mind off things. I somehow made the team, and about halfway through the season we were playing a rivaling high school. It was a close game, and the pitcher wanted to rest, so for some, probably drunk induced, reason the coach decided to have me pinch hit. The pitcher was actually a terrible hitter too, so I wasn't really feeling too much pressure. I stepped up to the plate and on the first pitch I swung and hit a double down the first base sideline. The pitch was fast, I was late, and when I opened my eyes I saw that it was fair. Call it luck...or bad luck if this is your second read. On the next pitch, I stole third base. I was always pretty fast, I had that going for me. I took a lead, and the third base coach told me that if the ball goes past the catcher I was to steal home. On the very next pitch that's exactly what happened.

I started sprinting toward home, and as I was getting close, I noticed that the pitcher wasn't even attempting to cover home. The catcher, of course, didn't know this and didn't hesitate to viciously launch the ball straight toward the plate. There was no one there to catch it, and as my foot stomped on the plate, I raised my arms in the air as if I just won a marathon. It was a glorious feeling, brief, but glorious. Just as my hands reached their pinnacle, the ball followed it's destiny and like an asteroid on a path of total destruction it made impact and embedded itself deep into the holiest of all holy places. The place that just one year prior learned the magnificent purpose of its very existence. A cup? No, of course I wasn't wearing a cup. I hardly ever played, and wearing one turned my garden of eden into Satan's sauna (Also, see toe bunions and high heals above). My right testicle practically exploded. My arms made an instinctive B-line straight to my crotch and like a switch was hit, my legs stopped working and I fell straight to the ground. My coach came over, in a tired, frustrated, gingerly kind of way, as if my being injured just fucked up his day, "And that's why you wear a cup!" he announced to the field. I stayed on the ground for a few minutes; the leg switch was still rebooting. The ground next to that home plate was a bad place and needless to say, I didn't want to be there, but it wasn't the worst.

If the greatest activity I could have done that summer was learn the Kama Sutra, I found myself basking in the glory of the complete opposite extreme: recovering from testicle surgery. The impact was bad, the minutes on the ground after the injury were worse, but no horror I've ever experienced compares to the couch I called home that summer. Thanks to Vicodin, the pain was bearable. What killed me, was the perpetually haunting thought that just one year earlier that couch happened to be the very same place I lost my virginity. What was once the happiest place on earth was now my hell. Fuck that couch. I learned two valuable lesson that summer. First, good things are transient and fleeting, enjoy them. And secondly, always use protection. It will never be comfortable, but, dammit, if there are two things in this world that no man should ever ignore, it's condoms and cups.

M Diamond

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