And I am thinking about just how far I am from where I was when this all began. I'm looking at a square of lukewarm Lou Malnati's and hearing about the Sitz Bath and no one is batting an eye.
Except for me.
It started over The New York Times. I see it via Facebook and they let you read 10 articles fer free and that's when the headline writers get really good and I am tortured because I can't see these delicious collections of letters lumped into paragraphs. Oh yeah no, not the political stuff or the front page or all those reporters risking their lives sprinkled across the globe. It's the ethics columnist or something like this one:
Going Under the Knife, With Eyes and Ears Wide Open
This I have to read. So, I asked two different people if they wanted to split a subscription and they both declined for different reasons which is absolutely cool but the second one (helpfully)suggested something like The Washington Post which I could get fer free by signing up for signing up for Amazon Prime and I was like(imaging me mentally stomping my foot) but I don't WANT the f-ing Washington Post and I don't WANT the stupid Amazon Prime. I want The Times, dammit.
And I recognized that feeling of like, Here Little Lady, you don't want that big ole nasty pick-up truck, do you? Why don't you come on over here and pick yourself out a nice Chev-ro-lay.
I felt like I was asking for permission. And that shit. Had to stop.
That's when I rearranged my life so I could go to improv. I took a cut in pay that I can ill afford but I never got to rest after the cancers moved in and I was really feelin' it. Can you believe next Wednesday is going to be the last Wednesday in this series? It's astounding.
The beginners group-which is what I signed myself up for-it took a long time to get to where we ended last week and that was-we were playing a game called Left-Hand Louie and the category was swear words(you have to go around and say different swear words and if you mention one that's already been said? You have to put your hand down. When your two hands are down, you're out.) but here are these people, who in some form or another, have found themselves mashed by cancer and we are saying reprehensible words and it was So. Funny.
There were a lotta frustrations along the way-like one woman who was clearly Too Sick To Be There or the guy who at the first class introduced himself as a registered sex offender-like that was supposed to be funny-and ya know, listening to the instructors who Are Young-hearing them complain about their day jobs and this quibbley minor life stuff to a room where there's a woman with who takes three busses to get to Gilda's Club starting near Central and Lake where the shootings have closed the BBQ place because the owner is too scared-she said as I hoisted her walker out of the back of my car the one night I gave her a ride home. She can't stand for very long but her improv is as sharp as a knife.
Maybe the instructors could work on their sensitivity possibly maybe or maybe that's the point of the whole thing. To not think about cancer for 2 hours a week.
I asked if our group could keep going. We'll see what they say.
I am watching a GoFundMe. They say it's 'in my network'. I say I'm way too nosy. We're both right.
It's woman with stage 4 colon cancer and her husband. He's asking for 45k. She's doing a 4 month chemo, them major surgery to remove her "colon, appendix and other linings", then a 2 month session with a different chemo and he says they're anticipating it will take between 8 and 10 months and I think of how glorious it is-that this man I do not know-has no idea of what he's in for and he's not even the patient.
I mean the blindness to the rest of the story-if you will-is a wonderful thing.
I had something wonderful happen. It's happened to me exactly four times so far. Where one of my friends has massively interceded on my behalf and it feels like when you see runway lights go on in a movie.
And all of a sudden all systems are go and you're running like hell to try and jump up onto that plane. It's the craziest thing.
I hope I can do that for someone else someday. And I hope I never have to.