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Rumpy Pumpy
March 6, 2009 6:46 AM   Subscribe

You can sleep better at night knowing that one more Irish GP has sworn off using the medical terms "willy bits" and "rumpy pumpy" with patients.

Though patients often wish that doctors would speak in a way that puts them more at ease, Dr. Ross Ardill of Dublin, Ireland, appears to have taken that intention in entirely the wrong direction, using what he called "childish language" to make his patients feel more comfortable.

What makes this particularly interesting, however, is that we know of Ardill's case because of a recent change in Irish law: medical professional misconduct cases are, for the first time, being held publicly.
posted by ocherdraco (33 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
"Some inflammation and a bit of discomfort urinating, I see. Hmm. And when was the last time someone filled your hoo-ha with goof juice?"
posted by middleclasstool at 7:04 AM on March 6, 2009 [3 favorites]


I thought clinical language made people more comfortable discussing private matters.
posted by DU at 7:08 AM on March 6, 2009


I just wish they'd stop using the puppets.
posted by Lipstick Thespian at 7:14 AM on March 6, 2009 [5 favorites]


DU, contrast that thought with Julianne Moore's first lines in The Big Lebowski. Sometimes formality and detachment help, sometimes it's the other way around.
posted by adipocere at 7:16 AM on March 6, 2009


I've got nothing useful to add here. Just want proof that I was present for the birth of the rumpypumpy tag.
posted by mannequito at 7:17 AM on March 6, 2009


I am imagining him saying this in the voice of Pat Mustard, the randy milkman from Father Ted.
posted by flashboy at 7:22 AM on March 6, 2009


So does "rump" have a different meaning in Britain and Ireland, kind of like "fanny"? Because "rumpy-pumpy" doesn't sound very vanilla to American ears.
posted by dunkadunc at 7:30 AM on March 6, 2009


Do I look like a cat to you, boy? Am I jumpin' around all nimbly bimbly from tree to tree?

Alright, fine, I really have no good reason to be posting this.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 8:08 AM on March 6, 2009 [1 favorite]


I want my doctors to use clinical terms. It makes me feel more comfortable, knowing that they're knowledgable and unashamed of the human body. Furthermore, I appreciate not being talked down to. If my dick is rotting off, I'd prefer precise language like "necrosis of the penis" rather than being told "your bits are borked."

While terms like "cooter clock" may be fine for the bedroom or Metafilter, doctors ought to be able to say "vaginal chronometer."
posted by explosion at 8:09 AM on March 6, 2009 [2 favorites]


My Dad's from the Irish Republic and I remember him using the term 'willy bits' to describe hoo-has.

So I'm confused. Or maybe he was, and I'm just a little miracle.
posted by dowcrag at 8:09 AM on March 6, 2009


While terms like "cooter clock" may be fine for the bedroom

That's some sizzling hot pillow talk you've got going on there.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 8:10 AM on March 6, 2009 [1 favorite]


Rump and Pump are not the roots of the expression rumpy-pumpy (I'll have to look it up later or maybe Languagehat is reading this).
It simply means a bit of "How's yer father" .

ye know now, a bit of the old "slap 'n tickle".

Anyone?
posted by Wilder at 8:41 AM on March 6, 2009


The only place I've seen "rumpy pumpy" before is in the trade paperback of V for Vendetta, where a Scottish gangster with a Trainspotting-thick accent used it.
posted by Halloween Jack at 9:01 AM on March 6, 2009


Rumpy pumpy... No, it's nothing to do with the kyber, as your man says it's just giving the missus a good seeing to. You shermans have some odd ideas...
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 9:14 AM on March 6, 2009


My only exposure to the phrase "rumpy-pumpy" is in that episode of Blackadder where he falls in love with a girl he thinks is a boy. So, yeah, confusion.

The crime here, surely, is that the Irish doctor was using such British terminology. For example, for example, in a case like this:

If my dick is rotting off, I'd prefer precise language like "necrosis of the penis" rather than being told "your bits are borked."

(I don't believe anyone with a penis would rather have the word "necrosis" applied to it than any other term, but I digress...) The proper Irish medical terminology would be something like, "Aye, yer shillelagh be in the feckin horrors like a gobshite culchie."
posted by Sys Rq at 9:42 AM on March 6, 2009 [3 favorites]


ye know now, a bit of the old "slap 'n tickle".

Anyone?


I'm in! Just let me cancel my 1:30 conference call.
posted by tommasz at 9:48 AM on March 6, 2009 [1 favorite]


My doctor told me I needed to stop "beating the bishop".

When I asked him why, he said "Because I'm trying to check you blood pressure!"





*this is a stolen joke
posted by orme at 10:00 AM on March 6, 2009 [2 favorites]


My Dad's from the Irish Republic and I remember him using the term 'willy bits' to describe hoo-has.

So I'm confused. Or maybe he was, and I'm just a little miracle.


Yikes! Irish anecdata, but I think you might be a precious little miracle alright - I'm open to correction, but my very careful and scientific study suggests 'front bottom' is more standard. Or did he use it as a catch-all?

A friend, living in Ireland then but from Spain, made my decade by wondering out loud how 'how's your father' works as a pick-up line.
posted by carbide at 10:03 AM on March 6, 2009


The last time I saw "rumpy pumpy" was years ago in british magazines like Smash Hits and Sky when I was a teenager. They used it a lot! I'm from Ireland and have never heard any other paddies using the phrase.
posted by jamesonandwater at 10:15 AM on March 6, 2009


blackadder ?
posted by sgt.serenity at 10:20 AM on March 6, 2009


doctors ought to be able to say "vaginal chronometer."

So a cooter is really a vagina? I never knew that. I thought Cooter was just the name of the mechanic in the Dukes of Hazard.

I feel like I've just been robbed of a massive opportunity for double entendre.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 10:21 AM on March 6, 2009


The only place I've seen "rumpy pumpy"

Is Vis. Sid the Sexist, Roger Mellie, and the Fat Slags are all partial to a spot of rumpy pumpy.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 10:24 AM on March 6, 2009


sgt. serenity: this one
posted by Sys Rq at 10:30 AM on March 6, 2009


I always thought "How's your belly off for spots?" was a better pickup line. But that's just me.
posted by sneebler at 11:32 AM on March 6, 2009


I believe it was De Selby (see Lux Mundi pp.155-157 and ff.) who noted that the peculiar dampness of the Irish climate with its susceptibility to the accretion of black air has long placed the willy-bits of the Gael in peculiar peril; the great savant recommends well-ventilated domiciles eschewing conventional walls for an arrangement of tarps as the most expedient remedy and one may only concur.
posted by Abiezer at 12:54 PM on March 6, 2009


If my dick is rotting off, I'd prefer precise language like "necrosis of the penis" rather than being told "your bits are borked."

The term you are thinking of is Fournier Gangrene; and believe me you do not want to hear it if it applies to you.

I thought clinical language made people more comfortable discussing private matters.

That varies widely; many people do not understand clinical jargon well enough to know what you are even saying. I once had a grown man who upon being told we were giving him oxygen through a face mask pushed the mask away asking "Oxygen! What is that?!" I have also been chided by a pediatric patient's parents for asking if their child was looking forward to a visit from the Easter Bunny. That is how I learned that Jehovah's Witnesses think the Easter Bunny, Santa Clause, and so forth are "nothing but a bunch of lies" and don't expose their children to them. Much of the art of medicine consists of being able to tailor your communication to the patients expectation/education/culture and so on. And while telling a patient to have sex to help her sleep is over the line, I would guess that if people tried masturbation as a sleep aid instead of benzodiazepines, the world would be a better place.
posted by TedW at 2:42 PM on March 6, 2009


Oddly, Roger Ebert has been using "rumpy-pumpy" a lot lately.
posted by xil at 5:45 PM on March 6, 2009


That is how I learned that Jehovah's Witnesses think the Easter Bunny, Santa Clause, and so forth are "nothing but a bunch of lies" and don't expose their children to them.

Well, they're right.

Much of the art of medicine consists of being able to tailor your communication to the patients expectation/education/culture and so on.

Yup. That's why I like the people at The Hassle-Free Clinic (very useful for STD checkups, Torontonians!); they actually ask you what sort of nomenclature you prefer and are most comfortable with.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 8:43 PM on March 6, 2009


That is how I learned that Jehovah's Witnesses think the Easter Bunny, Santa Clause, and so forth are "nothing but a bunch of lies" and don't expose their children to them.

Well, they're right.


Point taken, but do you really want a world where there is no Santa Claus or blood transfusions.
posted by TedW at 9:38 PM on March 6, 2009


The former, yes. The latter, obviously no.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 9:51 PM on March 6, 2009


I have also been chided by a pediatric patient's parents for asking if their child was looking forward to a visit from the Easter Bunny. That is how I learned that Jehovah's Witnesses...

Just for future reference: It's not just Jehovah's Witnesses who don't do Easter egg hunts. There's also, you know, non-Christians.
posted by Sys Rq at 10:03 PM on March 6, 2009


It's not just Jehovah's Witnesses who don't do Easter egg hunts. There's also, you know, non-Christians.

Except for the non-Christians who came up with the idea of rabbits, eggs, spring, and fertility all being somehow linked. Don't get me started on Yule.

But your point is taken; when I first meet a family I now know to look for cues as to their religion and try to be as neutral as possible until they say something.
posted by TedW at 10:58 PM on March 6, 2009


Ugh; I promise to retire the phrase "point taken" for at least a week.
posted by TedW at 10:59 PM on March 6, 2009


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