As a retort, I tried to prove that I was, in fact, very sympathetic. However... If you don't fall into a series of categories, then you're shit out of luck. I don't think my list is entirely unreasonable, and if I am very honest, if you think I am mean to you via the Interweb, imagine being one of our kids, trying to wangle a day of school with a sudden case of Don't Feel Well Itus.
Which, incidentally, has been all but eradicated from this address, on account of the list.
It should also be noted that this list also has exceptions at every step, so while you might believe you fit into one category, you are probably wrong. Also, good rule of thumb: If it's is stupidly self inflicted, then you are automatically disqualified from sympathy. Booze, Driving Like A Dick, Showing How You Can Ride Without Using Your Hands, Juggling Chain Saws... No non nein.
- Something Leaking From Where It Shouldn't Be:
Generally, if you're bleeding out, then you are entitled to sympathy. No, ladies, just no. You chose to be a woman, deal with it. Also, PROPER puking is allowed, UNLESS you've gotten yourself knocked up, in which case, your own fault.
Exceptions? Watery eye, running nose, booze-induced pukathon, dodgy kebab itus...
- Something Not Moving That Should Be Moving:
Maybe you've popped something out of it's socket. Maybe you've broken it. Maybe you've snapped your tendons and ligaments. Whichever, they are usually entitled to a brief "Oooh nasty, take care!"
Exceptions: Something is so swollen after you did some form of body modification that you can't move it? Jog on.
- Something Moving That Shouldn't Be Moving:
That joint that has suddenly appeared between your wrist and your elbow? Your foot pointing aaaall the way back behind yourself? Your ribs poking out of your chest? Yep, all perfectly valid reasons for a wincing "Ouch!"
Exceptions: You did it playing sport. You prat.
- Something Inserted Where It Shouldn't Be:
Anything from a very large splinter (ie, over an inch!) to a knife, a rapier, a claymore sword... Tree Branches, Pipes or other large objects are also eligible for good bout of "Brilliant! Get well soon!" I will also even accept a large bone (that belongs to yourself) poking out of where it shouldn't. Also, nails, screws and bolts inserted into the body THROUGH the meat qualify. Additionally, ANYTHING, regardless of size, that has to be removed from the eyeball by a professional.
Exceptions: That teeny tiny splinter the size of a microbe? No chance. Power tool accident WHILE doing DIY also doesn't count. It's like tap dancing on a minefield - eventually, you're going to go BANG. And again, body modifications gone wrong are exempt.
- Germs, Parasites & Viruses:
If it's something that causes oozing from places there should be no ooze, causes things to appear where things SHOULDN'T appear, or makes internal organs burst, then you are pretty much going to get a little "Awww there there" thrown your way. Additionally, things living inside you are just downright COOL and will always get "Wow, that was in your THIGH! Excellent!" Properly nasty illnesses will also get a cool cloth on the forehead and chicken soup provided.
Exceptions: That sniffle, tickly cough, rash, or other little thing that isn't worth bothering the doctor about? Nah. That cough that is REALLY loud and annoying is also ineligible due to the annoyance factor. Anything you refuse to see a doctor about also disqualifies you from sympathy. If it's not bad enough to disturb a medical professional, it's not bad enough to disturb me.
- Something Not Attached To Where It Should Be:
If ANY part of your body has to be collected by a third party, put on ice, and driven separately from yourself, congratulations, you've reached the Holy Grail of sympathy. Pretty much anything that is not intended to come off, the comes off, will get you pity. Internal Organs that become External Organs through almost any means also qualify. Your spleen should not be dangling from your anus, for example. Likewise, if a new orifice has appeared through which an Internal Organ, Bone, Ligament or other structural item is visible, you may also get me to hold your hand.
Exemptions: Ear Lobes and Finger Tips are the equivalent of the ickle sad splinters of this group. I am talking dismemberment. DIY-Induced accidents are also not counted - see Tap dancing on a Landmine analogy previously. Having body parts removed may or may not qualify - appendix, tonsils, gall bladder... They will be judged on a case-by-case basis.
- Being Dead:
Being dead qualifies you for sympathy, PROVIDING you don't meet any of the Exemption Criteria for the previous sections. Death through sports or DIY? Dead after binge drinking? Teeny Tiny splinter turned gangrenous? Sorry, all your own stupid fault.
- Other Exceptions:
When a fellow Man is injured square in the googlies, then he is entitled to sympathy - unless he deserved it. This is to be determined by a vote by other men present.
ManFlu ALWAYS qualifies for sympathy, such is the severity.
Lastly, I am ALWAYS exempt from any and all exemptions under each category.
So there you have it, my quick and easy guide for proving that I am, in fact, a very sympathetic person. You're pretty much safe as long as it's A) Not self induced, B) Not a sniffle, and occasionally C) Hilarious.
If you disagree with ANY aspect of these rules, then please do not expect any form of sympathy in return!