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Posted Dec 10 2008 9:04pm

I went to the andrology lab to produce a semen sample today. I walked there after work, so I was still dressed in office clothes, which just made the whole thing even more surreal. The andrology lab is one of those services without a proper reception - so you just buzz the intercom and wait until they call you in. So that’s what I did.

I wasn’t really embarrassed about it, but the experience is definitely quite odd. I went through some medical details with the woman who let me in. She didn’t say “masturbate” or “ejaculate” or “semen” or anything like that - it was always just “produce a sample”. She gave me a plastic specimin jar and a bag to put it in after I’d produced my specimin, then she showed me to the room where the specimin production would take place.

It wasn’t an unpleasant room, but it was extraordinarily drab. It was fairly small and painted a hideous grey. There was a chair (upholstered in wipe-clean vinyl), a sink, a rubbish bin, a cabinet, a mirror and a shelf. There was also a notice, which told me to wash my hands and my penis with soap and water for the purposes of hygeine. There were three pornographic magazines in the cupboard.

So I followed the hygeine procedures and produced my sample, for science! It’s an awkward situation, but I’d followed their instructions and hadn’t engaged in any other kinds of sample-producing behaviour in the four days before, which helped. Then I followed the hygeine procedures again, wrote the time of production on the specimin jar’s label, put it in the bag and was pretty much done.

And then I went Christmas shopping.

In three weeks time the andrology lab will send the results to my GP. So I should find out whether I’m producing no, some or normal amounts or sperm in January.

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