I have done the deed. My ears have holes in them with metal poking through. It looks prettier than it sounds. The earrings are white gold, with sparkly cubic zircona, which means that I don't have to spend the next two months wearing only god or silver jewellry and looking like an 80s throwback. I have asked my family please not to _all_ buy me earrings for Christmas and birthday. All thanks are due to EMLA anaesthetic cream, which notwithstanding that one looks an absolute plonker with it on for an hour in advance, is magnficent stuff, and I really cannot imagine why it is not more commonly used.