Friday, November 25, 2016

I am tethered to a corgi.

She seems to have broken out with some sorta UTI something or other or should I say, she's determined to redecorate the living room floor. Need I say more? Yeah, I didn't think so. 

I did this same thing when she was just a pup. You tie the leash to your belt loop and try to be both entertaining and functional and there are less surprises all the way around. Course now, we're just shooting for a good 'settle' as opposed to on the job training. 

Also-I am typing with one hand. 

Also I am adding this photo of THIS IS NOT A BILL letters I got from Land O' Lincoln all in one day-just so you don't have to look at that creepy leg rash photo again. 

oy!







Week In Review

So there was Monday-no big deal, and then early Tuesday morning when I opened up one of those MyLoyola emails thinking-oh this must be about the iron thing, right? Hmmmmmno. 

Patient is status post bilateral thyroidectomy. At this time, a level 

IIb left lymph node appears with more convincing fatty hilum, 

measuring 1.4 x 0.4 x 0.8 cm compared to 1.1 x 0.8 x 1.1 cm. No 

additional enlarged or architecturally distorted lymph nodes noted. 


This was pre-coffee early, early, early Tuesday morning. I thought: surgery. More surgery. Then I thought about that radioactive  nugget thing they drop into your throat. Then I thought: chemo. 

P was just waking up. I lead with: I'm worried. And then I stop and think no-I can't carry this kinda stuff on this crazy busy work extravaganza day. So I say: No, ya know? I'm not going to be worried. 

I walk straight away from it. One eighty. You can do that. POW. 

Later, I text my comedy pal. We both admire this work.  I ask, which do you prefer: "I kicked cancer's ass" or "I kept going". We both agree we prefer "I kept going" altho I'm not sure either one of us would wear such a thing. A good discussion tho. And that has value too. 
--------

If you do massage-you have to have schtick and especially if you work at more than one place, I've found it's a lot easier to tell the truth. Most times, I do not recognize people until I get to their left hamstrings-it's a volume business (at the moment) so people were asking me about Thanksgiving. 

"What are you doing for Thanksgiving?"

I wasn't really prepared to say, the first time someone asked, but it seemed as if someone(me)had done an awful lot of yakking with this particular woman so, I told her the truth. 

"We're taking my Dad to Hamburger Mary's in Oak Park for Drag Queen Bingo. That is our Thanksgiving."


I am sure you do not remember Thanksgiving last year, but I spent it with certain family members who's behavior was so massively rude and I was so incredibly angry(remember I broke out in this crazy leg rash that's only seen in children?) the social worker I spoke to earlier in the year was teasing me with an imitation (of me) saying: I will CUT you, but ah-HA! She was absolutely right. 




I figured that stress rash(they didn't say it was caused by stress but they couldn't find any other reason it occurred)probably cost me 4 doctors appointments(Like a primary care, 2 dermatologists and a kidney specialist-of all things)which meant time off work and 4 increasingly gigantic co-pays and oh yeah pain, joint swelling, a skin biopsy on my right thigh, prescriptions and I thought, ya know what? 

Someone I work with was telling me, when her mother got breast cancer, that was the end of toxic people. Whoa whoa whoa, I thought. How brave. 



I got out early from work, P picked up my Dad in Elmsville, then me in Forest Park, we drove to Oak Park Brewing Company and sat in the car chatting because we were a little too early. Then it started to rain. We got to the place where they seat you, to find that bingo had been cancelled. 

My team did not let me down. 



Here is my Dad eating fried Twinkies. I said, well you can tell your wife no
 longer roams the planet if you're eating THAT. We cracked up. 


The Endocrinologist got back to me right away on Wednesday. Everything looks normal. Keep going.


Thanksgiving. 









Sunday, November 20, 2016



Saturday, we went to Gilda's Club for the Newcomers Breakfast. I had to take the day off work to go, but I figured the proper way to join a group is to start at the beginning, no? Thanks to my iPhone, I found a cool new way to get to Gilda's that is not the Expressway. (I'm staying off the Expressway because I no do wanna get shot at this time thanks, thanks, and thanks again.) I took Chicago to Grand to Wells and wah+lah. That is cooler than you know. I think we got there in about 30 Saturday morning minutes. 

Shocker. 

We went to the second floor and there were 4 tables set up. In my olden-life(and this would probably be pre-Second City training but cancer has increased the urgency) I would have sat in the F position as noted on my diagram. Like I'd be IN the group and all, but way, way, way on the edge. Now it's all-deep breath in and go right for the middle (Fig. C)where there was a nice hole waiting. 

I was speaking to a cancer woman earlier this week. The topic of massage came up. Oh, she said, I could NEVER TOUCH PEOPLE LIKE THAT. I said, oh yeah? Well, I NEEDED TO MAKE A (F*ING) LIVING so I can't assume the imaginary cringe like you can, (you a-hole). (Okay I didn't say all the swear-verbage but oh you can believe that I thought it.) This is the same thing. I'd like to have the option of being a 'I do my best work at night/introvert' but my life prevents it at this time. And you know what? It's more of a life than I ever had before. 

Go figya. 

Anyway, can you imagine, some lovely volunteers got up early to stir up a giant pan of scrambled eggs on our behalf? I was honored to eat them, you know? And there was orange juice and coffee and teeny quiches and bagels and cream cheese and yogurt and breakfast sausage-I think that was it and that was a lot, wasn't it? (Later-when we cruised through the hideous Italian food mall known as Eataly, we had not a single temptation as we were still stuffed. (Have you been to Aldi lately? They have some Really Nice Italian stuff.)) 

So far, at every Gilda's thing someone randomly bursts out a few words about how much they loved her. Isn't that pretty amazing? It's getting to be where most of the people never heard of her(remember the staff member who thought Gilda Radner was the primary noogie-giver?) but there's still been someone in each group that speaks of her with genuine admiration. TeeVee is a powerful thing. 

At one point, one of the staff people came around to each table and informed us of two rules. Please do not come to Gilda's Club if you are sick. Please put your dishes in the dishwasher. Words to live by, huh. 

We met some lovely humans-once again-you have to be right out there with your sentence. Your medical elevator speech or whatever. I had been secretly worried that my sentence didn't have enough drama to qualify to enjoy the scrambled eggs in good conscience, but it's got commas in it so there was nothing to worry about and I think they'd welcome you even without punctuation cuz that's how cool they are. 

-----


There were 2 medical things this week. A sonogram of my neck and blood tests and a visit with the Blood Lady(the hematologist). I tried to get coverage for the Thursday when I had the sonogram but nobody picked it up so I told my supervisor I'd come straight to work after-except I'd be sticky from the goo and she said,"We'll take you sticky." and I thought that was Very Funny. 


I tried to approach the sonogram like it was a vacation because paying for all these procedures has the possibility of preventing me from immediate fancy travel, right? ("Hello Queen Mary? I need to cancel my voyage.") So, if this is where I'm going, I might as well try and enjoy it. I had a lovely young woman who made a puddle of goo at the base of my neck and dipped into it with the sonogramming wand thing. It's not an unpleasant thing to have this done and when I got to turn to my right, she even turned the screen so I could see. She was hunting for lymph nodes-in my head I think they were little white hard pebbly things but they seemed to be like black craters on the screen. 

She also had the coolest ergonomic chair. I've massaged sonogrammers before-it's a very tough gig on your body and I asked if I could try out her chair and she let me. 

Fun is where you find it, if you look, yo. 

The hematologist is the one that keeps me in this game. This risk of blood clots-such a gigantic bummer and also possibly a genetic abnormality(chew on THAT-Thanksgiving participants).  I approached that appointment thinking she was going to tell me something but it's actually completely the other way around. I'm the one that carries the answers. If I have leg swelling or a certain pain I will have already entered Trouble Town. 

And we talked about the cost of this blood thinner I have to take. If it gets to be too much, I have the option to switch to Coumadin which costs something like 2 bucks but THEN, I have to make a commitment to leafy greens. Is that not the craziest thing? You either have to choose a life with salad every day? Or none at all. 

When I was a grade school twerp, we watched Ray Rayner in the early morning and Chelveston the Duke-as Ray called the wildly flapping duck that appeared on the show-would take great gulps of iceberg lettuce on live TeeVee in the early hours and I got to thinking if I too could have salad for breakfast everyday like Chelveston. 

And the iron factor. I got a blood test before the appointment(the women in the Cancer Center are the best blood drawers in the universe) and after those results trickled in(heh heh heh)it seemed as if I was anemic so I had to go back and get another blood test to see what was what. I will know more next week. 

The craziest thing is I have been very tired but I thought it was because I am Severely Lazy and Not Working Hard Enough. 

Wouldn't that be a great Thanksgiving gift to find out it wasn't a character flaw?


Woo!








Thursday, November 17, 2016

I have a plan. 

It's like a 5 or 6 or 12 point plan who's purpose is to turn me back into a person. Not that I'm not actually a person in the meantime because, of course (duh) I am. It's just the invisibiliality factor of all this medical stuff. That becomes the priority and the rest of you fades. 

I need glasses. That's not even negotiable. Today I had to make library cards for a family fresh from from Africa and with that hologram stuff happening on their state ID's and the can lights above me on the library ceiling-there was not a hope in hell that I could do my usual-'Hey can you spell your name for me?' thing I usually do. Most hilarious when then person is like: J-o-h-n-S-m-i-t-h. And I'm like.....uhhha ha hasorry. So that's on my list. 

And the dentist. I need to go. 

Real shoes. Suitable for job interviews-should they rear their cheerful heads. 

And, make-up. Somewhere along the line, I threw everything away. It wasn't really getting worn and it was old and that is absolutely not cool. 

I went to Nordstroms Rack for the shoes and Nordstroms for the makeup and two different women commented on the cool factor of the shoes I got, so that was cheerful and then the makeup. Hmmm. 

I went to the Bobbi Brown counter. I had fantastic luck with them back in New York. It was expensive but I had it forever or at least I had the template and I liked it. That is a very valuable thing. 

I told this Nordstrom's girl(yeah she was a girl) I was interested in the 'Looking less tired' thing and also the '5 minute face' thing because I care, but I'm not going to make youtube videos about this situation, right? Wellllllll as time marched forward, I lost the honor of just picking out cool colors and I got the hard sell on things like Hydrating Tonic. And Skin Supplement Serum. And that-in addition to all over heavy foundation-is exactly the stuff I just cannot stand. 

It makes me sweat. 

Well, she marched forward-I think-really disappointed in the fact that I was going to be so stubborn about the face spackle and maybe that's why she smothered me with this all-over-Trumpudlian-bronzer stuff and then the weirdest thing. She was applying an eyeliner called Violet Night Gel and I nearly lost my marbles. 

It's a pigment in a plastic stick(like a pencil only plastic) and she was lining the inside of my eyelids(why why why) and I felt like I was back at Loyola having some sort of unpleasant medical 'stick-some-sort-of-metal-implement-where-an-implement-has-never-been-before' procedure. Really. 

I actually recoiled. It was the weirdest thing. I used to think shopping was a great way to spend a day when there were all these trees to look at. 

I promised I'd return to Bobbi Brown and buy something but after I got outside and gazed upon my former loveliness, I knew I never, never, never, never would. 


-----

After I took a nap, I had just enough time to hose that stuff off before I went to Gilda's Club for my first official adventure. Do you know, I got out of the shower with these toxic non-removable purple circles under my eyes. Oh so pretty.

Uggggh. 

-------- 

I think I have found my people. When they discovered it was my first Gilda's Club event, holy mutha of jayzuz these women made my jaw drop. (That's an accomplishment.) Almost as a team, they asked me the previous unaskable. I couldn't bother to be shocked because it was coming from all directions. What kind of cancer did you have? When? Where? Did they remove a section of the bowel? No chemo then, huh. What happens when they remove an adrenal gland? And questions along those lines and it actually made me smile. 

These women cut straight to the chase. What a fantastic relief. And there was another thing-they had some sort of positive fury about them. It was so cool. 

The presentation was okay. Her powerpoint was misbehaving so there were things like this: 

The ladies were all like: Is this the humor part? 

And the light refreshments? Lou Malnotti pizza. 

woo. 





Sunday, November 13, 2016

I wrote this song yesterday, ya ready?

Friends friends FRIENDS. Friends friends FRIENDS. Friends friends FRIENDS. Friends friends FRIENDS. Friends friends FRIENDS. Friends friends FRIENDS. Friends friends FRIENDS. Friends friends FRIENDS. Friends friends FRIENDS. Friends friends FRIENDS. family.  Friends friends FRIENDS. Friends friends FRIENDS. Friends friends FRIENDS. Friends friends FRIENDS. FRIENDDDDDS. 

Catchy, huh. 

------

True Story.

Yesterday, we popped into the Jewel-Osco Pharmacy to get my third prescription. The first two were no charge which is not to say 'free' because I pay insurance, right? 

I take three things-actually four but one is over-the-counter.  One-I call the refrigerator-because it's shaped like a refrigerator door from my yoot. Two is served daily on a delightful bed o' applesauce and it's purpose is smashing that reflux situation-which doesn't seem to be working at all but you have to give it three months. And three is for that blood clot I keep forgetting about. That's a red kinda triangle shaped pill and that's the one I was having trouble getting-because the Blood Lady wants to see me-ugh-and I need all those blood tests all over again but they did decide to give me a months worth so that's what I was there to gather. 

Get to the end of the transaction. Putting my fabulous Economy Shop orange wallet back into my bag and I say: Is there any charge for that? Thinking I was done, right? Hmm she says. Just a moment. Yes, that will be $50. 

I almost fell over. 

With my last insurance plan-the one the government allowed to shut down and run away with my already fulfilled deductible-the one that cost me 130 dollars less every single month-I think the most I paid was $20. And I even signed up to be this drug's stupid pen pal to get a month free. How annoying is that?

We got to talking-this pharmacist and I-and I said, hey. How much is this drug if you don't have insurance? 

THREE HUNDRED BUCKS. A MONTH. 

Holy Mutha of Jayzuz. 



Knock Your Sprouts Off-Sprouted 7-Grain Bread


We collected the stuff we scored at Aldi-so far the milk, the bread in the photo-which I think is a variation on Ezekiel bread and it tastes very happy-the bananas, and a whole bunch of other experimental things-seem to be very nice-altho I'm not especially sold on the coffee-but don't go by me because all coffee tastes weird to me right now-seem to be extremely cheerful choices and we were dragging them up to the third floor and I was telling P about the three hundred bucks for that One Pill. 

You know what that is, I said. 


A cartoon. 

-----

The strange thing about living in one place for this long is when it came to finding a safety pin, I knew exactly where they were. That's not normal, right?


When I was a twerp, on our path to Roosevelt School there were these posters in the windows of certain houses. It was the "Helping Hands" program. And the deal was, if you needed assistance, you could safely approach these houses and all would be swell. 

Now there's this:


And for me? In this time-in this place, I want you to know that I'm not going to hold you. That's creepy. But I would hold your purse or your nice dogs leash. And the love thing. It's too soon. But I respect you and your right to exist. Duh. Oh yeah and the shutting up thing. That might be a problem as well. 

FYI. 
--------


Coming up this week:
My first program at Gilda's Club and I'm going all by myself which is good, I think. If I went with my cancer busting pal-we would for SURE get booted for giggling(One time we went to a Professional Writers Meet Up and we were DYIN' laffing as the leader of the group read her romance piece. I mean like one of those situations where your face actually hurts and you can't breathe from trying not to laugh.) and you know, you don't fill friendship holes if you go in with your hands full. Or something.


And-as I check the calendar-TWO doctors appointments. Won't that be fun. 


-------

Have a charming week, my friends, friends, FRIENDS.

(See? I knew it was catchy.)









Friday, November 11, 2016

This week I was euphoric. 

Did it actually start hitting me on Wednesday morning? Trying to figure that out. 

Yeah, Wednesday morning. Surrounded by people who had little or no coping skills. I had this string of thoughts that started with: I will not get pulled down by the election of that creepazoid bastard. Not after all this. 

And then watching other people about whom my boss said,"Everyone grieves differently" but I could clearly see coping skills were not factory installed and I could say I felt bad for them-that's what a good lapsed Lutheran does, right? Goes around 'feeling bad' for other people? But I actually didn't and here's why: I cannot get gloom on me. 

Not now. I'm still recovering. And maybe I'm even kinda surfing on my personal rage that I had become so complacent. (Insert mad frowny face here.)  

And then, even weirder, I came to understand something my sainted mother did to me post-divorce when I moved back in with them and she yelled at me to: PRODUCE and I thought she was being evil and mean, but now, finally grasping the idea that work is a privilege-especially on days like Trump Day-where if you're extremely fortunate and I am-you get to be in a situation where you don't have to look for the helpers-like Mr. Rodgers said, you get to be one.  

-----
Worst cancer thing of the week. There's a woman who I see once a week. Her daughter died from cancer. She has cancer. And she will not be ignored. 

And she did a whole routine with me that went something like this: 

HER: Is everything really okay with you?  

ME: Well yeah. I have a few more things I have to get done this year but...(here I'm thinking: I know this 'outfit' isn't all that flattering, but it's all I got at the moment, ya know? Jeez.) 

HER: But are you sure you're really okay? Because you don't look like you're sure.

ME: (Now I'm thinking, okay, what does she see that I'm not seeing? Am I really okay? Holy Mutha of Jayzuz.) 

Somehow I ran far far away from her  and went to an in-house library class where they taught us how to find key words AND action verbs for resumes(how cool is that?)and later, when I rehashed it with my Supervisor of Maximum Fabulosity, she explained that HER was probably saying that stuff to ME because things are not okay with her

So she was projecting. 



Never do that to somebody else. It's an awful thing.But there's a thing where, if someone else appears to be doing worse than you? It makes you feel better. This could be that. I don't hate her. Cancer can make you into a mess. 



Later, she offered to get me a job as a receptionist at a dentist office. Two people thought I look like I'd be a good dentist receptionist. Oh, I thought to myself. I'd look good in a Mister Floss cartoon scrub top? It made me want to jump off a bridge. 

Lucky thing I was euphoric. 

------

I was going to try and ride November out in terms of appointments but I got captured. I was trying to make a couple of inconsequential appointments for regular stuff-things are booking up like CRAZY in case you need to..oh ya know....get your colonoscopy done or whatever. And the appointment maker said, And, did you want to make your appointment for your next colonoscopy? 



Uggggggh. I had it completely removed from my head. Compartmentalizing Delight.  



And the jug of gunk had been waiting for me at the pharmacy since August(oops)so I went over there and tried to re-up all the prescriptions and I got busted by the blood lady. (The Hematologist.) She wouldn't re-up my prescription without a visit and PS: Couldja come an hour early for some blood work? 

Uh-huh. 


-------
Euphoria Part Three. I started drawing again. 

yay me. 








Monday, November 7, 2016







I got my hair cut, right?  

I mentioned to the stylist that I'd had some surgeries because they say that the surgery drugs trash your hair. Somebody told me thyroid drugs do something to you, where hair color won't stick. Horrors! My hair was in pretty bad shape-I knew that-but she started running her hands through my hair and saying: I can FEEL the medicine. 

In the words of Judge Judy: Don't pee on my leg and tell me it's raining. 

And then she said my hair felt 'waxy' and listen fellows, for the past year I've continued to splurge on the (well, okay not actually THE) fanciest of shampoos-so if I'm waxy, I've been sold a bill of goods all the way around. (I don't exactly know what it means to be 'sold a bill of goods'. I know my Dad would say it and that it was something that was Not Very Good.)

I just read an article that said Whole Foods carries some supercallafragilistic shampoo for less than 10 bucks a bottle and that's what I'll be buying next, but please remind me to ask my doctor if it's possible for a hair person to 'feel' medicine within someone's hair because like the suggested $40 keratin treatment-I'm not buying it. 


-----

Massage client who does physical therapy on teeny babies(Isn't that cool?) told me-the only fitness class that fit into her schedule was Chair Yoga and she said it was 'mostly old people' in the class but that she used it ALL THE TIME when she was sitting at her desk. 

Yikes I never would have connected those two things. Brilliant genius, huh. 

-----

The woman at Gilda's Club gave me a little booklet with cancer resources and she actually circled this one called: No Wooden Nickels. Provides valuable indirect expense to low-income cancer patients to continue treatment. 888-842-2654. www.nowoodennickels.org

But ya have to be in active treatment and I am not-so if you know anybody that might qualify-pass this along, won't you?
-----

Hand Outs, Hand Up


I got through to the food pantry benefits woman, at long last. You knew it could go either way, right? She could be very mean or very not mean and lo and behold she was so nice. Felt very fortunate right off the bat. 


I walked over there thinking of my pretend sister Benita-who in some other one of my previous crazy life circumstances-told me I  had nothing to lose and OF course, when I was offered a book-this time instead of being a giant defensive jerk(Me? Oh yes!)-I thought, okay let's take a look at these books-this was the first book I found.



Then, ha HA! A George and Martha. Accch, it was so good. And yeah, it had been redecorated by a kindergartner with a ballpoint pen here and there but that didn't bother me a bit. 

I also found a Very Hungry Caterpillar but I left that for someone else because I am not a selfish melfish. No sireee Bob. 

I brought papers. She ran numbers. We'll see what happens. But it was far less painful than I'd made it out to be in my head AND, ya know, from my current perspective-if you don't obsess about it, it's pretty easy to forget the level of demolishment that went down this year and for me, I'm taking this part of the whole experience and thinking about it-not as a hand out, but more like if someone asked who needed help and you were to raise your hand. 

You get there however you can, right? 
---

Speaking of weed, I asked one of my groovy co-workers(You can fear the millennials or you can ask them-very politely-for assistance.) for the name of a good vegetarian cookbook and she was somewhat mortified to recommend this one. 





I thought that was so funny. 




Thursday, November 3, 2016

Bill by Bill

So. Okay. While I was out-and by that I mean 'out of my mind with illness and junk'-it seems as if upon my work table, there grew a gigantic stack of envelopes. These envelopes had to be differentiated from the gigantic stack of medical statements(I wonder exactly how many trees had to die so I could live. Hmm.) but the truth is, I actually crossed over from simply coasting at 'whelmed' and then all of a sudden, plunged deeply into the land of 'overwhelmed'. You get there by discovering there was one bill you missed while you were down and out and now it's become two, WITH a late fee. 

Cripes. 

And then there were a whole buncha things like, two months ago, the internet bill magically leaped from $37 bucks a month up to $51 and all that was happening when you were focussing on a trip back to homeostasis. And to get a cheaper plan, they want me to add cable because that makes absolutely no sense at all. 

And all that insurance business which got resolved(so far so good-I guess)but the monthly premium(is that the word I want?)is so large, that I've wrapped myself in bubble wrap just for November, hoping I don't have to pull the card out which would cost me 20% of God knows what. 
  

I took to my bed. 



Well, not completely, but I got to where I just couldn't look. I did some ceiling staring trying to decide which was worse-the cancer surgery or the financial aftermath. It took me a week  of ignoring the pile and knowing it was the end of the month and I had to get in motion. 

A lot of the most painful cancer treatments-the way I(and one of my cancer friends) seem to have gotten through them was to score some sort of treat on the other side. Didn't have to be something pricey. Just something to focus on when they are somewhat unsuccessfully using a needle to suck stuff out of the lymph nodes in your neck. 


So, I kinda had that game in mind when I attacked the pile. I thought okay, so, whenever you think you deserve it, as you work through this pile, you can score a prize. 

Ready/go. 

It was the weirdest thing, but after I got Chase Bank to return my $12 monthly fee for exhibiting an extremely shrimpy direct deposit and then when I got AT&T to deduct the $28 dollar hike, I started feeling like some sort of lion. No, really. Tearing through this pile of problems. 

RAWR. 

Now I have to say, that it took days and one whole lotta running around. And I had to close the Chase account in order to pay Blue Cross while picking up an extra work shift-not that it's going to save me or anything-in my imagination-I say to myself that that particular extra shift is my breathing money-like if there's something that's beyond the budget entirely. 

For instance, I was out after work doing all these financial errands and I hadn't eaten, so instead of our new mantra which is: WE HAVE FOOD AT HOME (*sigh*), I popped into Sugar Beet Food Co-op and scored some healthy-ish chicken salad with grapes in it. In the three buck zone but something like that would come out of my imaginary extra shift fund. 

It took me the longest time standing in front of the sandwich salad section to decide what to get. They even offered me assistance but I didn't want to pay 6ish bucks for some sorta random sandwich so I said I was waiting for something to speak to me. What it would have said was, I'm not too expensive and the store has forks!  

And strangely, the words of Mary Poppins and Second City Improv Training School collided: 

"In every job that must be done, there is an element of fun, you find the fun and SNAP! The job's a game."

"Find the game." 

Saving my ass got kind of even a little bit-dare I say-fun AND never even required glamorous prizes. 

So far. 

___

A new person arrived at one of my places of business and they said they had a lot of questions and I did the physical indication that they could ask me anything which is pretty much how I run my life, I guess, and then they indicated that they didn't want to ask This particular question in front of the big boss and I thought umm okay. Not really. 

And a little while later they did this like: Pssst. Ann. thing and I thought ye Gods, what the hell IS this? And the yearning burning question was as follows: Where can I score some weed around here?

And I said: You're asking the wrong person. Which, ya know, should have shut that conversation down, no? I'm not making judgements about people's choices or whatever, I just don't want to be anywhere near that shit. 

I think that's fair. 

And they countered with this: How do you even get through life? 

This from someone who's probably not even 23. 

And in the deepest depths of my head and in my best Brooklyn accent I thought: Get away from me, yahhhhh little fuck. 

------

I was talking to some people at my other work and a woman sort of casually introduced me to someone else and she said, "Ann has survived two different cancers." and I don't think I've ever actually heard that in a sentence before and it took me a minute but I thought, oh yeah. That's right. I did. 

Huh.