[cancer] The breaking of the ancient Western code

Some semirandom thoughts about yesterday’s diagnosis, and a new round of surgery and chemo forthcoming.

  • This isn’t fair, but nobody ever promised me fair.
  • Some contests you don’t want to win.
  • I grew a tumor the size of a large olive while on chemo. How aggressive can this damned thing be?
  • Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. On the third occurrence, lift off and nuke the site from orbit. Unfortunately, I am the site.
  • My belief that I will not live to be old has deepened significantly.
  • If the universe is trying to tell me something, it’s got my attention.
  • The next person who suggests I still have lessons to learn from cancer is going to be in a world of hurt.
  • Cancer sucks.
  • I am terrified.
  • Cancer still sucks.
  • Fuck cancer and the bony-ass horse it rode in on.

11 thoughts on “[cancer] The breaking of the ancient Western code

  1. Yeah, the “lessons” notion always makes me want to give that person a boot to the head. Lesson? The lesson is that these horrible little cells exist solely to destroy our bodies. The word itself is ancient, and has no scientific meaning. It is purely cultural, purely pejorative, purely hated. Lesson schmesson!

    A counselor tossed that one out to my mom after she was diagnosed. The whole spiel about “what can you learn from this?” My mom’s reply? “I’ve learned that life isn’t fair, and that I’ll be dying much sooner than I wanted to.”

    And then she fought it as hard as she could.

    That’s what you do: you curse the little shits and resist them, give them no ground, rail at their existence, and live as long and wonderfully as possible.

  2. Seems like the biggest lesson you learn is who the idiots are out there.

  3. Cancer does suck. This news sucks. Fuck cancer, fuck cancer, fuck cancer. If this was a person, doing this to you, I’d be pulling the old mafia-style “Just gimme a name…” bit and going out with a brick.

    Since it’s in you, I’ll stay my brick-throwing hand and flip off that olive instead. Too bad you can’t just deep fry that one and be done with it.

  4. HollyAnn says:

    Sending good thoughts and wishes to you, today and all days. I’ve followed your journey without comment (wondering what a stranger could offer), but this news is so shocking, it dispels silence. I’m rooting for you.

  5. Blunt says:


    You’re an inspiration to so many people in so many ways, Jay. But all we want for you is for you to get your life back. If you’re the opposite of a medical miracle, at least you are in miracle territory. I think it’s time for the pendulum to swing in your favor.

  6. stevie says:

    Really, really sorry about this. Please keep writing, and keep cursing, and keep living, and keep going.

  7. Cora says:

    Just wanted to add a hearty “Fuck cancer” to the choir.

  8. Alex J. Kane says:

    Stevie said it better than I could, so I’ll simply second that. With your strength, Jay, you’ll do just as he suggested, and marvelously.

    Wish you the best.

  9. Barbara Winter says:

    Dog Dammit!
    I am so very sorry. I’ve only been through it once, but the mere thought of getting another diagnosis is enough to put me in a gibbering fetal position.
    Will continue to send healing energy your way.
    Peace to you and yours,

  10. Brian Pettera says:

    Wow, it’s overwhelming as a spectator and I find it hard to image your dealing with it in person. (And I have an imagination.)

    “The next person who suggests I still have lessons to learn from cancer is going to be in a world of hurt.”

    Thank you for being open and honest with us in your battle. I think the lessons that will be learned will be by us in how you deal with it. We can give you respect, prayers, heartfelt advice (needed or not but well intentioned) Me? I’m sending waves of good karma in your direction but all in all we can’t bear your burden even a smidgen. BUT…we are here for you. We’ll try to be cheerful with you, listen to you rail at the cosmos, chuckle when you impale irony with your sarcastic wit. We are the faceless friends who are watching, we’ve all been afraid, its ok. Of course it would just be easier if you just kicked its ass to Hell and back.

    Brian Pettera (One of your FB friends)

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