Picture it: a vibrant tableau of rural Irish childhood in the 1980s. Two lines of infants, marshalled by an elderly nun, stand in a freezing corridor, waiting for their turn to use the toilet. There is some perfunctory jostling and pulling of hair. But for the most part, it is a peaceful scene. On the wall behind, a portrait of Pope John Paul II smiles down serenely. Suddenly, a small boy, Brendan Thompson, bursts out of the toilet clutching his crotch, sobbing “Sister Maura, Sister Maura… My mickey is stuck in my zip!” Thirty or so of his classmates, male and female, jostle for a better view. Ouch. It does look a nasty one alright.
Sister Maura doesn’t flinch. “It’s not your mickey Brendan”, she replies calmly. “It’s your penis.” She puts on her glasses. “Now let’s have a look at it…”
(N.B. Bonus star awarded for hearing a nun say the word “penis”.)