I was present when God was designing humans. I told Him "The eyes, those I like. Round. Moveable. Good colour range. Top notch." And I mentioned that God had "nailed those boobies. I don’t think you’ll get much complaint from those!" I even stood and applauded when Project Opposable Thumb was given the, er, opposable thumb’s up.
But it wasn’t all great. My own suggestion for swappable, detachable, plug-and-play noses was met with a stern look and when I supported Lucifer’s recommendation that seven legs were better than two I was told in no uncertain terms that my presence would be tolerated only so long as I kept my mouth shut from them onwards.
Subsequently, I was merely an observer during the big Deliberate Design Flaw debate. God and his legion of developers/toadies put forward the argument that by making bits and pieces often fail in some way or another at irregular intervals it would make humans appreciate what they had more. The counterpoint was that was awfully cruel and the phrase "you bloody great bully" was expressed momentarily before one debating team found themselves transformed into protozoa on a small planet fated to be engulfed by a supernova exactly three minutes later. Design flaws made the final cut.
All of this explains why I have a mouth ulcer at the moment. On the right side of my mouth. Right at the back. Perfectly positioned in line with the rearmost teeth of each row. Perfectly positioned so that certain often-performed tasks rub against the mouth ulcer sending lightning bolts of agonising torture through my head. Often-performed tasks such as:
- not talking,
- not eating, and
- not drinking.
Thankyou God for the unending pain I am suffering at the moment. It’s not "so painful you have to scream" pain because, eventually, your body gets used to that or, more usually, gets sick and tired of your whining and either switches off the pain receptors or renders you unconscious. No, this is "dull, dull, fading, rising, not-so-dull, sharp shock, dull, dull, sharp shock" pain, the pain that effectively reboots your neural connections every so often so that it’s just like the first time all over again. God, you’ve surpassed yourself. A marvel! I truly do appreciate my mouth more.
Why do we get mouth ulcers? Well, as far as I can determine without looking anything up on the internet because IT’S ALL A LIE the precursors to any mouth ulcer are as follows:
Mouth ulcers often follow eating something far too hot that you should have known better than to place in your mouth. Most typically this is pizza. Oh, it smells so good and look, you can pick it up by the thick crusty edge and it doesn’t feel that hot. But wait! It seems that tomato puree and slivers of pepperoni may retain heat more efficiently than air-filled dough. Who’d have thought it? And don’t forget the cheese. It’s sticky, it burns. It’s (barely) edible napalm.
Now, you might think that the ulcer occurs over a burn point because your body is somehow "healing" the area and the healing takes time. And pain. But you’re wrong. Except for the pain bit. Our mouths can cope with hot food. We’ve had time to evolve since the very first Readers Digest explained how to make fire to our ancestors. I’m telling you now: God works in mysterious ways and in this instance it’s as The Punisher. Didn’t wait for your food to cool? Take this volcano of pain you impatient mortal!
We’ve all done it: watching TV, reading a book, blowing a nose (preferably our own), sitting perfectly still. Everything’s fine with the world. Then bam! Yes, you’ve just bitten some skin on the inside of your mouth for no reason whatsoever. Within minutes you feel a mouth ulcer form.
Why God, why? The obvious answer is that the mouth ulcer can’t just appear on its own – that would give away God’s cruel nature – hence the biting. Why bite yourself though? So this can happen:
You: I’ve just bitten myself!
Them: You’re a bleedin’ idiot.
You: I’m going to get a mouth ulcer now.
Them: Well, you shouldn’t have bitten yourself.
You need more proof? Okay, how many times have you been sat in front of your computer monitor, lifted up a finger, and stuck it in your eye? I’m going to presume you said "none." Please tell me you said "none." That’s right: as a general rule humans don’t just hurt themselves for no reason. Except for biting. That’ll be God roadtesting the design flaws.
Okay, I’ve not had any experience with this particular method of forming mouth ulcers and I might be wrong entirely but it seems that you can get just about any ailment going where sexual shenanigans have played a part. If I had to guess I’d say mouth ulcers form after one of you dresses up as a nurse. I know the way God thinks. It’s what He’d do.
So, to summarise: we get mouth ulcers when God wants to punish us for eating hot food, when God wants to punish us for a laugh, and when God wants to punish us for not sticking to the missionary position with the lights off and the sound of "Brian Blessed Reads The Book Of Psalms" on permament loop.
This is all very well, you’re probably thinking, but aren’t there cures? Let’s see:
- Gel: there are a number of mouth gels on the market that contain antiseptic and anaesthetic. These work in perfect conditions but the perfect conditions, unfortunately, are – check the small print on the packaging to confirm – a sulphur-based, twilight environment in a binary star system. On Earth they’re less effective.
- Alcohol: old wives claim that whiskey, brandy, et al have magical, mystical, mesmerising, recuperative (bet you were expecting a word beginning with ‘m’ there) powers. When many others felt content to take old wives at face value I performed my own investigations and discovered that they all work for the drinks industry: don’t trust them! My own exhaustive tests have failed to find a link between being drunk and the eradication of the common mouth ulcer although I did work out the meaning of butterflies once. I’ve forgotten it now though.
- Leeches: some people will tell you that ancient doctors and scholars had it right all along and that leeches will cure anything. How come John F. Kennedy was assassinated then?
- Dwarf-tossing: works as advertised!
- Doritos: also known as "The Man Method" the ancient cure of Doritos involves eating a whole bag of cheesy loveliness, deliberately poking each triangular corner into the ulcer before swallowing, and proclaiming "Thankyou Sir, may I have another?" The end result is manly floods of tears and an orange mouth ulcer.
- Power drill: the power drill method works by replacing the skin where a mouth ulcer likes to live with "not skin" (sometimes called "a hole"). Although very successful in removing mouth ulcers care must be taken when using the power drill method to avoid hitting teeth as some people have an aversion to a drill spinning in, cracking the enamel, teasing, and then severing the tiny nerve ends within sending blood and string and other tooth-innards down the back of the throat and into the stomach where they avoid digestion and form into sculptures of angels and require proctological examinations to remove them. Additionally, one side effect of curing mouth ulcers in this way is an increased risk of becoming home to rare birds or voles and losing the ability to whistle correctly.
Lacking a dwarf and forbidden to increase any possibility of birds becoming a permanent feature of my face by my other half who considers – rightly – all birds evil I have been forced to withstand God’s mouth ulcer torment in near-silence. Complaining to everyone in earshot and writing about it on my site is near-silence, isn’t it?