Pressing Questions

I have two pressing questions today.  The first most of you will relate to; the second, maybe not everyone.

Question One:  I’d rather take a bloody beating, but I have to buy a new washer. I wash a lot of human and animal bedding, so large capacity, at least 4.7 cu.ft. Got that part.

Why do I wash a lot of  bedding?  Because I made the huge mistake earlier in my life of accumulating a working zoo of animals in my house, all of whom appear to be immortal and all with varied hair lengths. While I’m happy to have them sleep on the bed, I don’t want to share their hair and the unidentified schmutz they pick up when they go outside 50 times a day to see what that noise was, and then deposit on the day quilt and comforter.  Also cat butts.

So I need your help. Maytag? Whirlpool? Another brand?  Not too high end. (Remember, the chances of me being around another 3 to 5 are slim to none.)

Agitator? Impeller (aka HE)?

I need an answer from some smart people because there are apparently none who work at the one local, independent appliance store in my town. We have a Lowe’s and a Home Depot, but I prefer to support local businesses when I can. I may have to rethink that commitment.

Unfortunately, this store’s primary sales strategy for selling washing machines seems to be blaming (alternately) the Democrats/Obama and the government for tromping on our god-given rights by regulating how much water we can use. Oh, absolutely. Because we all know we can trust millions of other people to be as responsible as we are – if the government would just leave us all alone.

Question Two:  Probably not kosher blog etiquette to ask this, but having cancer makes you not care what you say anymore, so here goes:  Anybody know what happened to Victo Dolore of Behind the White Coat? She just stopped blogging and her WordPress account is now private.  Also, Grandma Lin at Breathing Space? No posts since December. I know she follows this blog, so just wondering if everything’s okay.

Pressing. Questions. Get back to me ASAP.

The Boss of Everything

Youngest grandson, seven, called me this afternoon and wanted to know would I come pick him up “now or later, whichever is best for you” and take him to Game Stop to buy a Skylanders figure (pricy video game paraphernalia,  don’t ask).

Seems his older brother was invited to a friend’s house for the day and since he wasn’t invited and didn’t have anywhere to go it was only fair that he get a toy to compensate for this cruel injustice.

I asked him what Mom thought about this scheme and did she know he was calling me.  He said, “Well, Didi, since you’re really the boss of everything, you can tell Mommy what to do.”

Just wanted to let y’all know in case you thought you were the boss of everything.

Just in case

She clips the coupon for the HoneyBaked Ham,
just in case

And puts it in her purse,
just in case

At Target, she buys sweet candy and colorful baskets,
just in case

She dyes eggs, makes potato salad, arranges flowers
just in case

She tries to smile,
just in case

Goodbye, Stephen Hawking

I’ve mentioned before that I use this blog mostly as a repository of things I want to remember since, you know, chemobrain. Here’s an example.  I don’t know a black hole from a pot hole, but I know it mattered that he did.

An extraordinary human (and fellow atheist) left us today.  Thank you Stephen Hawking for your beautiful mind, your amazing work, your humor and your hope.

And now for my thoughts on guns…

Just kidding.

My opinion is worth about two cents, so unless it would result in some real change, I won’t add to the debate except to say that change will never happen as long as the NRA owns the U. S. Congress. More power to the Parkland kids, though.  I hope they don’t give up.

Two notable links this morning:

— El Jefe at Juanita Jean’s has this thoughtful piece called “The Tipping Point on Gun Violence.”

— The Thoughts and Prayers Make-up Look.  (H/T to YouCallThatArt)

Hope to post more regularly soon, but I probably won’t. Real life seems to get in the way, and I just can’t seem to focus anyway.

There.  Aren’t you glad I kept my opinion to myself?

Monday Notes

Dear Maizie:

I hope you, Emma and Ellie are running through some soft, high grass and stopping to discover new smells. I hope the sun is shining on your velvet head.  I hope you are eating those little cheese chunks you like and taking long naps under an old oak tree on your Coolaroo bed.  I hope you are looking at the moon and remembering me.

Speaking of the moon . . . the sky this week was worth a deep breath in and long look up.

********

If only you could be a little bit more positive.  The marketing gimmick that just won’t die and the pressure cancer patients can do without it. Not just cancer patients, anyone who’s struggling with disease.

*****

Research news.  Possible new approach from researchers at MIT for LC patients with a KRAS-driven genetic mutation, like mine.

*****

Cancer heroes.  Nice profile in the Washington Post on immunotherapy pioneer James Allison and Padmanee Sharma, their work at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center (shout out!) and their unlikely life together.  Kinda cool when I’m there knowing these two are on some floor above me working to cure cancer.

*****

National education hilarity Betsy DeVos schools us on what it’s like to be really, really smart and stuff.

*****

If you missed Ken Burns’s and Lynn Novick’s The Vietnam War on PBS, all episodes will be streamed until October 15th.  Don’t miss it.

*****

Perspectives.  There is no breathing room with lung cancer (no pun intended). Make it through treatment, mark an anniversary, maybe two, contemplate making it to the next one, hope some new drug comes along to make it even further.  If you’re lucky, only a few minutes of every day are spent wondering when when the cancer will come back.

Truth.  “He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals.” — Immanual Kant

Shout-out, Shut-in & Sh*t I Don’t Understand

Unless you’re Laura Ingalls — why would anyone do this? File under Sh*t I Don’t Understand.

Shout out!

Geez. Two months since my last post?  I know, hard to believe, and me such a prolific poster.

No health-related reason for my absence other than, apparently, my mind has descended to the point where I am no longer able to multi-task, or even find the words to complete a coherent sentence. Hey! Who does that remind you of?

Other reasons could be . . .

— Ennui, perhaps?  In medical record notes they sometimes call this “anhedonia,” though the two aren’t really the same.  Smartasses.  Always gotta have some word they think nobody else knows. Well, I took Latin, bub.  I know what anhedonia means.

— Summer and grandkids make for stuff to do besides blogging, or even reading other blogs.  You don’t dare try to sneak a little blog reading time on your computer.  When you sit down they descend on you like locusts wanting to play some game.

— Whatever I might have thought to blog about couldn’t have been too important, or somebody else blogged about it better and I didn’t see a need to repeat it.

— Kidding aside, it’s been a time of struggle and sadness for a few family and friends.  My heart just hasn’t been into blogging lately.

So, in case you were wondering, no health scares. Still NED. Just the minor lifelong litany of ills chemo and radiation bestow on various body parts that can result in a periodic good day-bad day thing.

In September, I’ll be two years out from treatment. That’s when my chances for survival are supposed to increase “markedly!” “dramatically!” “exponentially!” Though I’m not sure about that last one, at least in a true mathematical sense.

Then again, I heard an oncologist say the other day that 28 months is the window for recurrence, so who knows.  I’m just glad for every extra day I get so that I can claw my way out of . . .

The Department of Sh*t I Don’t Understand . . .

Like everyone else I suppose, I’m just trying to survive whatever sick game your president* is playing with North Korea, though my gut feeling is it’s just his way of distracting us from Mueller’s investigation. Also, enduring the stench of raw sewage he calls his Administration.

If I had to bet on what would kill me first, today I’d say it won’t be my cancer.

It is beyond my comprehension that this overbooked ship of fools is still docked. Rather than evoke the 25th Amendment, Republicans in Congress are willing to risk the lives of millions of people — Republican people, I might add — to keep this psycho teed up.

For what end?

And back to first world . . .

Our AC went out at 5am.

High today here in Hell: 100 degrees.

Pulled out the floor fans, closed the shutters and drapes and blinds, cranked up the ceiling fans to High, turned off any device that emits even a joule of unnecessary heat and now trying to convince my dogs to breathe through their noses and not their mouths. Do you realize how much heat two big, hairy dogs and one medium-sized dog panting produces? Why aren’t they following my instructions?

I forbid all doors in my house to the outside to be opened and even a microgram of diminishing cool air to escape.  “In or out, we’re not air-conditioning the neighborhood!”

Yes, I suppose I could leave and go to an air-conditioned movie or bookstore or the library, but then my animals would be left to suffer while I’m enjoying myself in icy cold comfort.  What kind of person would do that?  Hey! I bet I know someone who would.

So, I’ll stay here with them l until the AC guy comes this afternoon; hence, the term shut-in.

Also, anhedonia.