Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Climb or DIE

Hebrew beer stand at Great American Beer Festival in Denver, CO, on October 12, 20139:51 a.m.: I don’t feel like rock-climbing, but I had spent hours planning the event under the email subject “Climb or DIE” so I have no choice. After waking, I sip my protein shake and as much water as my wretched stomach allows. Our noon climb 30 minutes away in Golden, Colorado, isn’t nearly accommodating to recover from the Great American Beer Festival. I still must:

  • Wake Pumba next door
  • Get Pumba ready to climb
  • Get Pumba ready to drive
  • Get Pumba to pick up the rope
  • Get Pumba to pick up quick draws from McScuses
  • Get Pumba to pick up our other friend, Princess
10:26 a.m.: I email Princess, “Do you know McSteamy’s phone number? I need to pick up quick draws.”

10:39 a.m.: Princess emails me her and McLoaner's numbers, asks how Pumba is, and offers to drive us.

10:39:27 a.m.: I contact McRunningOutOfNicknames about his quick draws.

10:39:47 a.m.: I call Princess. “Pumba is alive I think. I’ll elbow drop her now. A ride would be awesome…You can pick up the rope?...You’re functional this morning?…You’re a lifesaver!…We’ll be ready for you to pick us up at 11:15.”

10:40:51 a.m.: “PUMBA!”

10:41 a.m.: McSomething texts his address and that he will leave the quick draws on the porch.

10:43 a.m.: Pumba makes three calls from bed and then says, “I’m texting Princess where to pick up the rope. I’m sorry I can’t climb with you. I feel deathly.”

10:44 a.m.: I lie on the floor in Pumba’s room. I probably don’t drool.

11:14 a.m.: Princess calls. “I’m here!”

11:15 a.m.: I call Princess. “I don’t see you…Pumba gave you the wrong address and you see me from the end of the street?...You’re wearing pink?...I don’t see you but my vision isn’t superb now…Ok I’ll wait here.”

11:17 a.m.: I enter Princess’ car. “Don’t worry, I’ve never once missed a toilet, trashcan or tree with my vomit. I’ll give you advanced notice if it is coming.”

11:30 a.m.: Mc??? mis-typed his address and the owner of the home we are staring it isn’t happy. Princess speaks. “We are looking for our friend who is leaving us his quick draws (homeowner looks more confused) on his porch. But you don’t look like our friend (homeowner looks frightened)…He just moved in, are you aware of new neighbors?...Across the street?...Thanks!”

11:40 a.m.: I choose Arby’s over 7-11, my only two options for sustenance, and order a plain turkey sandwich with lettuce and tomato. I eat a few bites. “I think it is staying down.”

11:42 a.m.: I had contacted every climbing gym in Denver and posted an inquiry on every climbing forum looking for a lead climber. The owner of one gym forwarded my request to his friend who was happy to lead our group. I email him, and our expert climbing friend who will also join, that we’ll be late.

12:15 p.m.: We pile into one car en route to Cat Slab in Clear Creek Canyon. I don’t feel like rock-climbing or even moving.

12:45 p.m.: We exit the car and I lag far behind as I traverse the steep trail toward our climbing wall. I take my gear, water and remaining Arby’s with me.

1:00 p.m.: Our expert climbing friend and new lead climbing friend set the routes. I can’t believe I’m about to rock-climb.

1:05 p.m.: I need to relieve myself. I have gone in many toilets, buckets and other collection containers, and many people have seen, measured and tested my waste, but I have never gone in nature. What would Bear Grylls do?

1:07 p.m.: I see some large rocks far down a steep, rocky path, next to a stream and across from a walking trail. There is no vegetation. I spot my Arby’s bag and open it. Clearly God had steered me towards Arby’s instead of 7-11 because of the three provided napkins. I pocket them and carefully walk down.

1:10 p.m.: I reach the rock formation and investigate.

1:15 p.m.: There is nowhere to completely hide so I settle on a small rock to slouch on, in front of a large rock to lean against. The crevice between them is my mark.

1:16 p.m.: I look in every direction for humans. Nobody is approaching or across on the walking trail. I turn back toward the climbers to gauge my visibility. I lean lower on the rock and hope just my head can be seen.

1:17 p.m.: Having no experience, I drop pants and drawers close to my shoes and hold my shirt high and tight. I’d rather cut off circulation than allow gravity to place extra shirt material where it doesn’t need to be.

1:19 p.m.: I stare at the three napkins in my hand and pray. The only alternative is sandy granite. (I will only need one napkin, will use them all, leave them there, and apologize to nature for my environmental offense.)

1:20 p.m.: I cannot find my result. I turn my clothes in every direction, check every part of me, double-triple-quadruple-check every part of me, nearly pull a neck muscle trying to confirm that I am not as ignorant as a toddler.

1:23 p.m.: I return to my group and hope the mental checklist I created from watching hours of Bear Grylls footage is not missing a critical step.

1:25 p.m.: I finish my turkey and bread. I hold the sandwich with my other hand.

1:40 p.m.: Full of food and water, clean and free of debris, I secure my harness. I’m up next. Climb or DIE.

Leia Mais…

Thursday, October 17, 2013

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Man of the Year

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Man & Woman of the Year
I don’t dawdle. Just days after my friend nominated me for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's 2014 Man of the Year for the National Capital Area Chapter, I accepted. The 10-week campaign will run from April 3 through June 14, 2014. The man (and woman) who generates the most funding for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society will be crowned champion of the galaxy.

I also don’t make decisions blindly. The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, founded in 1949, is the world's largest voluntary health organization dedicated to blood cancer. In 2012 it invested $68 million in research. Charity Navigator rates it 3/4 stars overall and 4/4 in accountability and transparency.

By the Grand Finale Gala on June 14, I will be 11 years cancer-free from my second cancer, which was (shocker) a cancer of the blood. Therefore, my goal is to raise $10,000 for each cancer-free year, totaling $110,000!

I will need help. Although donations to help save the lives of people like me are the primary support, I’ll also need:
  • Friendly conversation;
  • Motivation;
  • Candy for sustenance;
  • Coke Zero for elation; and
  • Most importantly, help reaching other communities for more donations to help save lives.
I’m looking for campaign team members—you won’t have to invest any money or too much time. Let me know if you would like to be part of this epic adventure!

Sincerely, your friend and hopefully future Milky Way champion,

Leia Mais…

Friday, October 11, 2013

If Other Things Shut Down

As published on The Huffington Post

The government shutdown has been rough on the hundreds of thousands of furloughed federal employees and laid-off contractors. But just think how much worse it could be if other things shut down.

If Facebook shut down, then fourth quarter GDP in the U.S. would probably grow by 39 percent.

If Google shut down, then I can't think of a scenario in which the world wouldn't end. Ditto for porn.

If Lindsay Lohan shut down, then courts, TMZ, Us Weekly, nightclubs, hair color companies, car and theft insurance companies, and the Promises, Wonderland and Cirque Lodge rehab facilities would all shut down.

If the NFL shut down, then God may not exist.

If coffee shut down, then Starbucks would only serve venti iced skinny hazelnut rum, sugar-free syrup, extra shot, light ice, no whip. God probably exists. Keep reading, here

Leia Mais…

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

If This Blog Reached a Shutdown

I am fortunate to remain working as 800,000 other federal employees are sent home without pay. I deal with catastrophe and hardship with terrible humor and I mean no disrespect…

What would happen in the event of a cancerslayerblog Blog Shutdown?

Its single author, editor, coder, formatter and publisher would have to stop work. He would also continue receiving $0.

Its seven loyal readers and 13 occasional visitors would be forced to reread previous stories such as Chemo Sprinkles and wonder why they ever visited this blog. They would then never visit cancerslayerblog again.

Now with extra time to read other things, one of this blog’s readers would devote himself to studying Justin Bieber. He would then enter depression and be unable to afford counseling. He would forget to clean his teeth and without access to preventive care, they would all fall out. Unable to chew, he would then subsist on Jolly Ranchers. Once his blood glucose exceeds 4,999 while crowd surfing at a Bieber concert, his heart would stop, he would die, and his next of kin would sue Bieber for all his wealth and end up settling on authentic replicas of Bieber’s owl tattoo. Screw tort reform.

All the blog’s stakeholders would bicker over why the Blog Shutdown occurred and pretend they are trying to fix it. In other words, I end up talking to myself a lot.

Media outlets would point fingers at the “bad” stakeholders. I think this means that on Twitter I would demand that health insurers not cover my hip and heart scans. On Facebook I would state that my Twitter account is simply a hindrance to me selling books. Instagram would post selfies and maybe some nudies. Google Plus would play impartial by posting nothing. Goodreads would create its own Twitter account just to post glowing quotes about my book. YouTube would forget it existed and just watch funny videos of guys in wheelchairs picking up chicks. About.me would…hot damn I have too many media outlets.

Without this blog for continued practice, my writing would suffer. I would then lose my actual job as a writer/editor in the federal government, lose my health insurance and then blame Twitter for forcing me to live in fear that healthcare would bankrupt me. I would then enter the health insurance black market by paying my pediatric surgeon-friend, NoCommonSense, Get Out of Jail Free cards in exchange for future surgical procedures. I would target calf implants in 2016.

Jobless and with ample time and no other skills, I would watch Breaking Bad start-to-end at least monthly in order to learn how to cook meth. I would distribute the meth to the 800,000 jobless federal employees. Now without teeth, skills and health insurance, we would all look forward to our respective shutdowns to end so that we could contribute to America again.

Leia Mais…