Genital heart disease. That’s how I heard it when I was ten. My parents were in the kitchen refilling each other’s drinks and whispering about Uncle Steve. That’s when they said it — that he’d died of genital heart disease. I was sitting around the corner in my C-3PO pajamas, listening like I often did to their recounting of the day’s events. Now, I knew what genital meant. I’d looked it up in the big dictionary in Dad’s office after I heard my fourth grade teacher tell the nurse that I’d been hit in the genitals. It had troubled me because I was absolutely sure the baseball had hit me square in the nuts, but who was I to argue. I was ten. So, to find out that this area, which I had already gleaned held a great deal of mysterious potential, could lead to my demise really knocked me for a loop. I lay in bed that night switching my silver flashlight on and off trying to see the beam travel between the instrument and the illuminated circle that appeared on the ceiling with each click. I figured the disease must manifest as some kind of problem between the genitals and the heart. I knew the heart was in charge of love. I’d eaten my fair share of candy hearts: I’m Yours, Be Mine, et cetera, et cetera. I figured that, perhaps, the afflicted genitals kept the heart from functioning properly, or vice-versa, leading to either a bursting heart, or balls, or both. I imagined my testicles exploding like miniature Death Stars: first the left, then the right, and then my heart.