Of all the professions we fear, one stands out. No, it's not "mortician;" by then it's too late. This is a word that makes a certain part of our anatomy pucker in anticipation. Yes, the word is "proctologist;" the dreaded p-word! The mere mention of the word strikes terror deep inside most of us. 9 1/2 of every 10 adults would prefer a root canal over a visit to Dr. Finger. (Source: I Made It Up Survey) The other half is into that sort of thing.

Proctologist; from the Greek meaning "pain in the ass." Did you ever wonder who was the first proctologist? My research shows it was Dr. Ben Dover, who was fed up with mainstream medicine and wanted to boldly go where no one had gone before, "I think I'll devote my life to making people as uncomfortable as possible... since dentistry is taken, I'll start at the other end."

Have you ever gone to a party and been introduced to a doctor. After a hardy handshake, you discover he's a proctologist. Even wash- ing your hands 6 times, you still find yourself only eating with your left hand. He is the one doctor you never ask for free advice, "Doc, I've got this thing right here, can you take a look at it? But he's one person who's seen more assholes than you'd find at a political convention.

Throughout the ages, proctologists have been the butt of many jokes; butt I would not stoop to that level here. I have given a considerable number of minutes to formulating ideas to improve people's concept of these doctors of the down under.

o In order for a proctologist to receive their medical certifica- tion, their hand must fit in a size one glove, and they must have their fingernails removed. o The proctologist's genitals shall literally be placed in the hands of the patient. At the first sign of discomfort, the patient may exert an equal pressure producing a similar discomfort. o Proctologist's advertising shall NOT include phrases like: "Let our fingers do the walking." "We'll bend over backwards for you." "Please, take my seat." "We give 'Moon over Miami' a hole new meaning." "It looks like the End." o Doctors will not be allowed to use wise cracks or ice breakers like: "I can't place my finger on it, butt you look familiar." "Don't have a seat, I'll be right with you." "Quick, nurse! Get the camera! They'll never believe THIS one!" "Yes, I see a family resemblance." "Hmmmm, looks like you're a quart low." "The first three feet might be a bit uncomfortable; after that..." "Out of K-Y Jelly? Oh well, let's do a dry run." "I'm putting you on a low-bean diet." "Nurse, give me a number 2 sandpaper glove." "How long have you had this crack in your butt?" "I see you had pizza last night." "When was the last time you had a lub and oil change?" "Ah, you must be gay." "Nurse, come here. Ya want to feel something really weird?" "Ooops, I think I lost my watch." "I've never seen stalagmites growing in one before!!" "If you think that was a pain in the ass, wait till you get my bill." "Gee, I hope I can get this out." "When was the last time you had your barnacles scraped?" "Nurse! Who let this asshole in my office?"

Jack Kolb Dept. of English, UCLA kolb@ucla.edu

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