The problems with my foot have subsided, and new (and expensive) shoes should mitigate the causative factors leading to sore foot problems. Everything seemed fine.
Until I got up.
You see, in 1999 I was diagnosed as having diverticulosis. In 1999 I was 32, and it's really uncommon for someone that age to have symptomatic diverticulosis. Maybe 70% of people age 60 or over have it but are completely asymptomatic. I am one of the unlucky ones who a) developed it early, and b) have problems with it. And in 2001 the gastroenterologist added "irritable bowel" to the laundry list.
In short, my plumbing is all fucked up.
For the most part these conditions don't bother me much. My "output" varies but usually doesn't cause any serious trouble. I do have a tendency to get "gut malf" easier than most people do but 99% of the time I can function just fine even though I apparently have the lower bowel of a person 150% of my age.
So, over the past few days I've been experiencing heaviness in my lower left abdomen which I thought was "irregularity". But when I got up this evening, the heaviness had turned into cycles of pain and relief which spell diverticulitis. So I reluctantly called off, got dressed, and drove to the doctor's office, which has "extended care" hours.
Any doubts I had had about calling off evaporated when I got out of the Jeep at the doctor's office (er, "Urgent Care") and discovered that I was walking partially hunched over. Otherwise, it hurt.
So, here I am, at midnight, at home instead of at work, with a prescription for two weeks' worth of Amoxicillin, and hard boiled eggs on the stove. I'm going to be eating no/low residue foods for the next 18 hours at least (probably closer to 24) in order to let my gut rest as much as it can, and take the Amox. to rule out infection. Monday I'll see how I feel and decide then whether or not I need to go see my regular doctor.
As annoying as all this is, at least I don't have the problems a friend of mine has. He's younger than I am and had hemmorrhoids so bad that his hemoglobin count dropped to like 3 (out of 15!) due to rectal bleeding. He finally had to have surgery for them in 2001, which kept him from seeing The Fellowship of the Ring in the theater. (And this was the guy who read The Simarillion even though it's so boring it can induce brain damage; he's a serious Tolkein fan.)
Both of us have these problems for the same reason: a lack of fiber in the diet. He doesn't eat vegetables ("I'm not a fuckin' rabbit") and I have a history of not eating enough vegetables.
So here is the lesson that the wise will take from this: fiber is your friend.