The Operation Game: A brief tale regarding the complexities of removing body parts

Original retro gaming?

WHILST growing up during the yester-years, board games were a popular form of entertainment – games like Snakes and Ladders, Monopoly, Game of Life and Scrabble ruled and there was no sign of the Playstation and Xbox. It was normal to have a board game on the living room carpet with players rolling a dice, shifting their piece around the board whilst kneeling or sitting with legs crossed.

Innovation and staying power

Manufacturers of board games have kept the innovation going to ensure popular games don’t disappear to the board game scrapheap – I’ve lost count of the many versions of Monopoly currently on the market!

The game, Operation, is still on going strong. Trying to remove body parts from patient without anaesthetic would normally mean the end of the road for the surgeon (career-wise) and the poor patient. Luckily Operation was not so serious and very forgiving.

Below is a brief story of the complexities of removing body parts in the game of Operation (no one was harmed and no excessive blood loss occurred during the procedures)

The story begins …

THE PATIENT IS TERRIFIED and the surgeon has recently qualified – after years of rigorous study, exams, training and marathon hours, she’s qualified. Fiona Flump questions herself – is she up to the job? She saw the terrified look on the patients’ face. Words of reassurance spurted out her mouth and the patients’ heart rate stabilised. Now it’s time to back up those words of reassurance with action. Hopefully the patient will leave the operating table in a better state than he came in!

The procedure is simple – she’s removed spare ribs many times under watchful supervision but today there’s no supervision. She goes in slowly with the tweezers. The ribs is slightly off centre so she carefully moves it to the central position before the removal – a steady hand is a must as she goes in. The tweezers grip the ribs securely before being lifted out – success! Her reward – a relieved patient and £100!

Dr Flump knows there are more difficult procedures ahead. Below are the levels of difficulty for removing various parts of the body. These difficulty ratings are scribbled down on the wall of the staff toilets.

Adam’s Apple

Technique: Pinch hold of the stem.

Pre-op advice: The Adam’s Apple challenge doesn’t diminish whether it’s a Golden delicious or Granny Smith!

Difficulty level: 6/10


Technique: Get hold of the tip of the bone.

Pre-op advice: Unlike a genie in a bottle, you won’t get three wishes to have three chances of removal!

Difficulty level: 8/10

Broken Heart

Technique: Insert tweezers between the broken centre and top half of heart.

Pre-op advice: A broken heart is fragile so handle with care. Advisable to ditch swigging the vodka during this procedure.

Difficulty level: 9/10

Funny bone

Technique: Grab the centre of the bone – dead simple!

After-care advice: After removing give your dog a treat – watch them chomp on the bone whilst wagging their tail.

Difficulty level: 4/10

Spare ribs

Technique: Go straight for the tip of a rib!

Pre-op advice: This is a no nonsense removal so don’t make a meal out of it!

Difficulty level: 2/10

Butterflies in stomach

Technique: Just like flipping a coin: choose heads or tails.

Aftercare advice: You’ll be floating like a butterfly and evading the stinging bee after successful removal.

Difficulty level: 5/10

Writer’s cramp

Technique: Just pluck it out!

Pre-op advice: If you can’t successfully complete this routine procedure … resign!

Difficulty level: 1/10

Bread basket

Technique: Into the jigsaw-like area with the tweezers.

Pre-op advice: You’ll find out which side of your bread is buttered if you mess up this procedure!

Difficulty level: 5

Charlie horse

Technique: Clutching the leg is recommended.

Pre-op advice: It will be tempting to slap a 50p each way bet on this removal, but remember … no gambling in the operating theatre!

Difficulty level: 8/10

Water on the knee

Technique: How else would you pick up a bucket? Get hold of the handle!

Aftercare advice: Throw the bucket of water at your colleagues in operating theatre – it will stop them dozing off!

Difficulty level: 5/10

Anklebone connected to the knee bone

Technique: None!

Pre-op advice: Warn the patient before the procedure that the chance of the success is one in a million!

Difficulty level: 10/10

Wrenched ankle

Technique: Get hold of the centre of the wrench.

Aftercare advice: Take the wrench home and mend that leaky sink. Alternatively, it’s a good threatening tool to regain an unpaid loan!

Difficulty level: 3/10

Enjoyed the blog? A nostalgic look back at the popular board game Monopoly and the Vic 20 home computer is featured in the new hardback book, Section N Underpass. Get the rundown by clicking the front cover below:

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