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Last week I received a rather remarkable e-mail, which offered me the opportunity to, Join thousands of satisfied customers across the world and try male enlargement today! My penis would, it seemed, be “drastically enlarged” in length and width to sizes previously thought impossible.” The e-mail invited me to enter a new world of epic erections, almighty ejaculations, and a sex drive as wild as a horse which has accidentally blundered on to a busy motorway.

People often make unkind remarks about these sorts of e-mails, but over the following days I could not put the advertisement from my mind. I have long been resigned to walking the Earth with a small member, but a recent incident had revived the old feelings of inadequacy which I had suffered as a teenager. I was relieving myself at a urinal in the Frankenstein nightclub when the man next to me suddenly exploded into violent laughter. He stunk of drink, and men with weak minds are occasionally pushed into unexpected hysterics by silly thoughts and impulses. Yet the laughter at the urinal unnerved me and my adult years momentarily receded, so that I was a teenager again, despairing over my littleness. In the subsequent weeks I urinated in cubicles, sitting down.

Last Friday my apartment had been quiet, I had drunk the best part of a bottle of cheap whisky and, on a whim, I set up my laptop and replied to the e-mail, expressing interest and soliciting further information. By the next morning I had forgotten about the e-mail, but on the following Monday I was surprised to receive a package by recorded post, which contained an airline ticket to Zurich and the address of a private clinic. The covering letter informed me that I had been booked in for an appointment the next morning. Intrigued, I cancelled my agency work for the rest of the week and prepared for my appointment.

The next morning I flew into Zurich, a taxi collected me from the airport, and by half past ten I was signing into the clinic. The receptionist required an eighty Euro fee and I paid by cheque. I was conducted into an examination room, where I met the doctor. He asked me to undress and he studied my member.

“Quite routine, the operation,” he assured me. “I will lengthen the fundiform ligament and pump in some silicon to enlarge the girth. You should be up on your pins again by midday.”

“Will there be much pain?” I asked. I did not care about the pain, but it seemed impolite not to take an interest in the doctor’s work.

“It will be a little sore.” The doctor smiled.

Half an hour later, I lay back on what seemed like paper sheets in a room with soft green walls. The doctor asked me to inhale from a plastic tube, and then his gentle presence and the soft green walls and the paper sheets seemed to rise and disperse like a cloud of butterflies. Later, I remember sitting up, feeling groggy. The doctor suggested that I lie back down again. The room seemed to be filling with cool, fresh air, and then suddenly my head was clear.

“A taxi will return you to the airport,” the doctor was saying. “It’s best not to drive for the rest of the day.”

On my way out, I remembered something. “Eighty Euros seems remarkably generous,” I observed. “You could surely make more money out of this?”

The doctor smiled and shrugged slightly. “It covers administration costs. Like so many of those on the frontiers of technology, I am rather aloof from questions of money. The penis is very important. The small penis has a long shadow, in which all sorts of psychological tics and inadequacies spawn. And I have the power to send all those worries and fears and jealousies scurrying away, vanquished. Imagine a world in which every man is content with his body, and every woman is content with her man’s body. This world is possible, my friend, and it seems like equality, utopia.”

But I was already half way out of the door. In the taxi, I tentatively handled my crotch and I was rewarded with a feeling of sudden, overpowering liberation and euphoria. Pulling down my pants in an airport toilet cubicle, I experienced the same frantic, giddy excitement which a small child feels when unwrapping Christmas presents. My penis was splendid, incredible, and almost inhumanly big. It shone like plastic fruit and I could scarcely get my hand around it. My member was not unwieldy or cumbersome, however, and there was a curious lightness to it. I sat on the toilet and masturbated, and I ejaculated several feet, the come splashing against the top of the cubicle door.

Yet I soon found that one feature of my new penis repelled me and left me ultimately estranged from my sexual powers. The glans of my old penis had not been visible, and yet it was quite clear in my new member. I could observe it withdrawing and emerging from the foreskin whilst I masturbated. This impression was foreign to me, and I was horrified and distressed by the strange shape of my new penis. The cold dread which flickered in my heart as I observed the withdrawal and emergence was like something dancing on my grave. I felt very light headed when I tried to masturbate for a second time, and I had to lie down on the floor of the cubicle and sweat out the horror. I immediately wanted to return to the clinic, but I am reliably informed that the good doctor has no time for malingerers fussing repeatedly over their genitals. I feel like I’ve been castrated – mutilated! – and my magnificent member now hangs untouched and quite useless.