Sunday, September 14, 2008

An Unwanted Journey: Day 1026 - 'Gimme That Old Time Sarcasm'

"How many languages do you speak?"

"Two. English and Cancer."

"Cancer? What do you mean, Cancer?"

"Carcinoma - repeat after me - KAR-sih-NOH-muh: a cancer that begins in the skin or in tissues that line or cover internal organs."

"I know what cancer means, but I was asking how many languages you speak?"

"Two. English and Cancer."

"Uh...OK. Let me put it this way. Cancer isn't a language, sir."

"What do you mean, 'Cancer isn't a language'? It has a vocabulary. 'Adenocarcinoma.' It has a grammar - subject, verb, predicate - 'Cancer sucks the big one.' You have to learn it, right?"

"I'll put down one - English."

"Let me ask you a question."

"OK. What would you like to know?"

"Do you still beat your wife?"

"Aaaah. Let me jot this down. Patient exhibits signs of hostility and anger."

"Jot this down too. 'Patient has a sore ass from a low anterior resection and from talking to too many bureaucrats with shit for brains.'"

"Patient is becoming abrasive and insulting."

"Did you graduate from kindergarten, or did they just give you a social promotion?"

"Maybe we should do this another time, sir."

"Can you find your way out of the room, or should I call for a travel guide?"


ken coe said...

It was sad to read your most recent narratives. It appears to be certain that you and those close to you will deal with this with the courage, determination and affection that has supported you along this most painful journey.

Leonard Cohen, perhaps not the appropriate troubadour for times like this, wrote in Anthem:

You can add up the parts
but you won't have the sum
You can strike up the march,
there is no drum
Every heart
to love will come
but like a refugee.
Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack in everything
That's how the light gets in...
That's how the light gets in.

Don Spencer said...

Thanks again for writing, Ken, especially for the very relevant and useful lyric from Cohen. How pertinent too - "there is a crack in everything" - you know, for a guy with rectal cancer :)