The Church of Cancer
(Warning: This is intentionally irreverent about cancer, as the title implies. If such attitudes bother you, leave now.)
Introduction: This was originally posted to one of the prostate cancer mailing lists back on 4/28/00. New York City Mayor Giuliani's diagnosis had prompted a variety of remarks,
even including some fairly biting ones, wondering if he will now seek the "prostate cancer vote."
The most caustic were being posted by someone calling himself/herself "Howard Stern," after the controversial New York City radio personality. One man couldn't take it any longer and said he resented this because Giuliani was now "one of us..." I couldn't bite my tongue any more and so this is what I posted, under the subject line, "Church of Cancer." I think it deserves repeating.
I'm not going to earn points or change your mind on
this one but I'm going to disagree with you on this
one, _______ . You said about our Mr. Stern:
As a CaP survivor, I deeply resent your childish
politicize the Mayor's problem. The dragon who
inhabits our bodies
knows neither friend nor foe. He is now one of us,
and I don't care
whether he is an R, a D, or an Independent.
If there is anyone who has the right to turn a tragedy
into a joke, it is someone who is there. In fact, they
need it most and when it comes to cancer, we need it
most. You may not like Mr. Stern's brand of humor but
I find it healthy and good roughage in the same way I
laughed at Lenny Bruce 30 years ago between his
arrests. Someone has to yank our chains occasionally.
As far as the Mayor being "one of us," is that now
said in hushed tones, as if there is some reverence to
it or special honor that now means I can't make jokes
about cancer in his presence?
If Rudy wants support, he's got it. From me. From you.
From Berky. And probably from every damned SOB on this
list because we know what it is like. But I'm also
going to warn this fellow SOB that he's now going to
find a few new cancer jokes floating around and I want
to thank him for them ahead of time because I need a
few irreverent laughs in the face of this Beast we
have in us. I want to spit in that Beast's face every
time I can and one of the best ways is laughing at it,
Laughing out of spite and if some other "survivor"
(gawd, I hate that term - that's another subject to
earn me points) wants to take me to task for my manner
of fighting this Beast, okay. I'll try to be polite to
the individual but on the subject in public forums,
then, stand back. I give this Beast no quarter.
Enough of these hushed reverent tones in respect for
this Beast, that we can't say certain things. Who is
this PCa, the Pope and Johns Hopkins [Hospital] is the Vatican?
(Stern would probably say so because he likes their
coffee.) What is this, the Church of Cancer? If so,
color me atheist. (But I'll try the coffee.)
And don't take it personal, ______. I'm willing to
live and fight with someone who resents my attitude. I
just want them to live and fight with me.
I just don't want to sleep with you, if you don't
PSA at Dx 1000+
and I am enjoying it!
[Note: As soon as I sent this, I decided to write why I am NOT a "survivor," which is also at this site.]