Saturday, July 7, 2012

How do you deal with waiting?

                On April twentieth 2012 I had a treatment called Chemoembolization. This is a Chemo session that works like this, first you find out that the last treatment stopped working something needs to be done. My Oncologist have me instructions to see my Liver surgeon, who sent me to see in Interventional Radiologist.  There was a visit to the Surgical Oncologist who treated me with Y90 microspheres, essentially the same therapy but instead of Chemo they use Radiation spheres that are so all they are called Micro, little tiny balls of Radiation. Both treatments are delivered the same way, guided directly into the Liver tumors thru tiny "tubes" that are guided by wired into the proper spots by the Interventional Radiologist. The guide wires are were placed in my Femoral artery to deliver the medicine. Chemoembolization protocols call for a maximum dosage of an amount I forgot, Dr Wiz said it was a large amount, it certainly felt like a shitload of yuck.
    The goal is to shrink and or slow tumor growth, the microspheres treatment worked well, lasting around fourteen months, seeming to be my saving grace.  The Dr. that did the Y90 had told me that it was a treatment that can be done over and over again, when I consulted with him about another round he looked like I pissed on his shoes. Shocking and scaring me and almost causing me to freak out right in his office.
This brings me to 4/20/2012 and the day of the Microspheres, I arrived at six am, drive myself by choice as I was staying overnight. Typically the keep you awake, I asked very nicely but forcefully to please put me out. A lesson learned from Y90, your laid on your back while it all goes down, the table has a 1# pad that offers almost no comfort causing my back to a for weeks.
Checking in to the hospital is like waiting for a table at Applebee's, you get a buzzer that lights up like a rave toy to let you know they are ready for your insurance info yet again. Then the hostess, oops nurse takes you back to the kitchen, darn it the prep area to get you in a gown and wired for the surgical team, they give you a mellow out shot that works wonderfully. 
        Now I am on the gurney, gown lines in for the drugs. If you have not experienced surgery this is a really complex part, Anesthesia whose purpose is to keep you out cold just long enough, breathing with all your vitals perfectly in line. The dance is now ready, since I was semi awake for the Y90 I can explain the next couple hours quickly. First they tap you artery, then they put the guide wires I'm while watching closely on special "X -Ray" type machines that make it possible to put them in the precise locations for maximum results. While they are doing this not much is going thru your mind other than when will it be over, there are flashes of how sophisticated or complex the whole procedure is. There are the feelings of vulnerability, lying there prone on your back with just the sheets covering you. You can’t see the Doctors while they work but you hear them. That was the Y90 for, this I was way asleep, unconscious or anesthetized or whatever you would like to call it.
So now comes the wait, 90 days this time until the scans and five more till the results are shown to me by Dr. Wiz my main man, love that guy. The funny thing about him is that he is so obviously brilliant that one might find him “cocky” I say dam skippy he is and let him stay that way for that is what I want in my Oncologists. Confident staid and sure his methods are the vest he can deliver.
So again I ask how you wait, would it be on your every thought, or would you think as I do. I cannot change the outcome, control the timeframe or have any choice in the matter so I wait, think positive thoughts and try to not watch the calendar. As yesterday passed so will today, they were both pretty good days tomorrow should be even better.

Scott VS Liver Cancer

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Monday, July 2, 2012

Randon again

Here we go the 4th on a Wednesday, party on blow stuff up TEAM America “F**K YEA!”   We are so patriotic, love it or leave it and by the way do not tread on me, thanks so much. It is great to live in a place where we feel free; talking to your neighbor about politics doesn’t end up with a visit by the religious police. Listing the world’s terrible places to be born is dull, redundant and obvious if you do not live in a hut.
If we truly are the greatest place to live why does Jerry Sandusky get to bang kids, worse yet groom these young souls through “charitable organizations’?” Or why our teachers are amongst the worst paid in the first world, causing our kids to slip to dismal placing in the worlds brightest. I think that I know why and it is something that will never be fixed, but it could be better.
When we are born it is simple luck or just the way that whatever forces control this life places us, some of us are born to privilege others not so much, and some into misery. Those of us who are fortunate enough to be raised in a place that is clean, civil and helps us to become stand up people may chose to stay in the society that we were raised in. those of those less fortunate may seek out a spot on in this world where they have a better life for them and their offspring. America is one of the few places on earth founded on these principals. I am happy to be here so my agreement is made so my best is done to stick to it.
What agreement Scott, you may be thinking as I hope you do. By staying in the culture I was born an agreement is accepted between myself and the community I live in, for this example it is the United States of America. The agreement is as old as civilization and described a long time ago by Socrates. The great philosopher had some impact on this world and his explanation of a Tacit Agreement is debated to this day. If you have the patience his argument is in Crito Google it, Socrates’ argument is presented to Plato while he is awaiting the death penalty. Socrates states that he has agreed to the laws of the land by staying within its borders he will not escape his fate, but accept it. This is a debate that has been going on for as long as societies have put laws into effect with penalties been put in place.
      What a Tacit agreement should mean to us here and now in my opinion is simple. If you choose to make your life in the USA, or for that wherever, you have made the choice to live you have Tacitly agreed to abide by and uphold an agreed upon way of life. This is why for me the guy who saw Sandusky in the shower is almost as shitty as Sandusky. By not making so much noise or dragging that sick fuck out by his ankles he broke his agreement, he must pay a debt to society for that. Shun him if not jail him make it clear that we protect those who cannot protect themselves not just your ass. So you can see it is not some patriotic love it or leave it view. I am not saying you should only speak English or some twisted tea party views, simply put what I am saying is do what’s right. If you choose to make your life here than please do as those around you do, be polite and neighborly. If we all follow the agreed upon laws of civility than truly where you live will be the best place in the world.
Or not cause I am ready for the Zombie Apocalypse

Saturday, June 23, 2012

 Doom ohh scary,,,,,

Hey ya’ all been a stretch before had me a chance to sit down at the old puter, procrastination is the curse of the many and I am no exception. Now the muse has tapped and my voice is awakened, no matter how insignificant the dribble. Heady words for a simple man, of course where does a guy like me encounter such verbose thoughts? Quite simply put the large world of Podcasts, where our contemporaries talk in a stream of free thinking. The lack of advertisers allows for pure opinions not tainted by the fear of losing cash flow. Find some you like it will brighten your day, much slicker than watching the box on the wall.
It has been brought to my attention that there is a condition that while can be a big part of ADHD; they are not exclusive to each other. Hyper Awareness is not just OCD behavior; it is the feeling of impending doom. Deconstruction of the statement is quite interesting to me and you if you have ever had this emotion. This subject is quickly debated, conversation many humans experience this if even for just a short time.  Not very fun, sure most cases are very manageable without any intervention. You can often keep this feeling buried for a short enough time, and it will pass. This is irking me since hearing about this “emotion”, why?
Deconstructing the description, “The Feeling of Impending Doom”. Feeling – causing a reaction that manifests itself, from a physical reaction all the way back to just a racing thought. Impending- its coming, do not know when but it’s coming. Doom – the end, as bad as it gets Kaboom! How can anyone deal with this, some medicate while others just live in it or the smartest of us seek a professional’s help.
This is something a Cancer patient lives with; they have gotten some of the most dreaded words a modern human can here. Fatal news, even in the most fixable circumstances it will scare the staunchest people you know. I have met many who are living this or have lived it, it is not always spoken about like some sort of tacit agreement amongst Cancer patients that we all feel this way.   
I am telling this because the person you know with Cancer, knew or will know feels this way. It is my hope that you recognize this and avoid contributing to the emotion. Be supportive and help where it’s appropriate to do so.
Universally people with Cancer have this feeling, most smile through it after all what can you do? Smile and move on to tomorrow is what I do!

Scott VS Liver Cancer
PS: No whining just an observation of fact.

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Thursday, June 14, 2012

Thank you guys!


        Over the last week or so I have been writing plenty, most of which will be posted at some point and it will be such a great release to put it out to the rest of the world, that might be a little grandiose so maybe it’s better said for those select few that take the time to read my blog.
       Except I cannot let go the events of this morning, so far my phone has rang almost a dozen times, Facebook is making the phone ding every couple of minutes, plus the people I have run into have all had wonderful Birthday wishes for me. I am so thankful experience what I have been putting out in the world coming back my way. My mantra has been loosely interpreted as you get back what you put out.
I have been making sure that I do the little things open doors, pay compliments, and leave a big tip or just generally trying to put out the right vibes. Today my theory is proven, while I have been blessed to have people in my life that are courteous, righteous and consciences of others, my behaviors have not always been so. Well today it is a sure sign that my philosophies work, this positive energy will carry me all year!

Thanks for the kind words, the time and effort that it takes to reach out and just being you, I am honored by your friendship.
Scott Vs Liver Cancer

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Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Please tell everyone!

      Oh No!

       My friends, my countryman lend me your ears news has reached our shores that need to be told through the land. This invaluable information should be spread from shore to shore, from the mountain top it must be screamed. In every place where good people gather they must spread the word. Our way of life is under attack, the fabric that has held our union so strong for two centuries plus is unraveled, perilous is our plight. The challenges before us will be difficult, some will die yet some will be saviors. You must not fear, you must not waiver face this head on with what you will, together we will defeat this heinous and fearsome foe.


Sever the spine,,,,,

From ZombieLand
Scott Vs Liver Cancer  

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Saturday, June 2, 2012

Chance Encounter, I think not!

My Uncle Martin whose first name is my middle name passed away in fall 2005, way too young at 62. Martin was very involved with me as a young boy, introducing me to the world if comic books, really good food and how to sell Fuller Brush products (the Avon for men back when). Martin used to work part time as a Car service driver that was my favorite because he hid me in the front seat when he picked up a fare. The details are foggy, I was only five or so, it involved us laughing that deep belly laugh that came so very easy to him. Martin had two daughters my beautiful cousins, who are now wonderfully smart, funny and beautiful. Missing him is very easy to do, there was are so many things that he would have answered for me.
What made me think of this was an occurrence that took place at work; I was working as a "Closer"* in a large dealership. This dealership is located was west in Broward county, so far west that only a highway separates’ it from the Everglades. Its location, while a popular place, it only draws customers from Broward County mainly. One of the salesmen on my team was working with a couple in their early thirties, they were interested in a very nice SUV. Nothing unusual this happens every day, only this couple lived about 45 miles from the dealership. That is unusual since they had to pass around four places that sold the car they liked, just not in the color they preferred we had it in stock.
The wife called earlier in the day and made an appointment for later in the evening, late for us around 7:30 (yet another reason why that business sucks). Upon their arrival the salesman was paged, he showed them the car that they wanted although they could not agree upon price. When this happens its’ my job to get up of my tush and go to work, simply fitting the car into the monthly budget that they now have to reconsider-do not hate the player as they say. When this takes place my training tells me it is important that we all get to know one another. After all it is a big purchase, plus it is how I made a living getting them to say yes.
Please do not think that this a sleazy buying experience with the typical slimy salesmen tactics, that’s just the thing it was a very natural, comfortable almost familiar conversation. His wives name slips my mind; his name is Carlton, who had recently begun working as a CPA. Our conversation went on, peppered with both laughter and lots of questions that led to us both learning about each other’s background, etc. Carlton worked for the USPS for around 14 years, my Aunt, two Uncles and quite a few friends have been career USPS. More specifically Carlton worked night’s downtown Manhattan. Martin worked night’s downtown Manhattan, my aforementioned Uncle.
The first thing I asked Carlton was if he knew him, he told me no and there were hundreds of people on shift there every day. So for a few more minutes we small talked, finally coming to agreeable terms. We were finishing up, thanking him for his purchase while thinking to myself how nice that he went to school, moved his family to a nicer place becoming a solid Father and husband. Then it happened; now this can be dismissed as coincidence but often in my life, coincidence is far from accurate this was from beyond my reasonable nature causing me to seem even Kookier in my beliefs. At almost 9:30 pm in Dump water Florida, butted up to the big Swamp a man in a mechanics outfit walks by me, slap’s me on the back, bellowing the name “RUDYYYYAAA”. Here is the thing no one calls me Rudy ever, but Martin was only called Rudy at work.

Carlton looks up from his Childs gaze and says, “your nickname is Rudy?” it’s not I replied, that is when he said I worked with a guy Rudy for fourteen years his last name is Rozinsky. Well after he told me that they played Knock Rummy every night and a few other bits, my cousins names  clearly that this man not only knew Martin they were close, Carlton said "Rudy raised me, taught me the ropes" He had only great things to say about my Uncle.  

So you tell me how do these things happen, here comes a man far from his normal travel area to wind up spending a considerable amount of time telling me all about a side of my Uncle that I would have not known and all of it good. Since Martin’s passing there have been many moments that it seems he has been right next to me. Once leaving a comic book store, another time in my home deep in thought yet again today when writing a different story to tell you. This was a thing while it was never forgotten; it was not in my every day thoughts although it was for a long time.
How did Carlton and myself meet, why did a stranger walk right by me touch me and finally calling me Rudy? Carlton's memories seemed so clear, concise, filled with insight about my Uncle? 

                  If perception is truly our reality, as my belief system tells me, then there is more to these chance encounters. I hope so, isn't it much more fun to think that we get to see some who went before us. Not to mention we get to go see some exotic locales, you know how I have been itching to travel 

  Scott VS Liver Cancer

* The asshole who comes out to get you to put more money down, or make higher monthly payments!
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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

This is the story of the first time I got Stoned, in the kidney!

What to write about, this is the fourth time sitting down, looking at the computer, putting my chain of consciousness to “paper” in the last couple of days. Politics, the coming zombie apocalypse (see Miami man eats face of other man) that dude really eat the other guys face! Another was just sad about dead people; OK some of those are really sweet stories about very brave Cancer victims for another day.
          So why not take the self deprecating funny route today, maybe just to me but comical missteps of me and kidney stones. My first experience with kidney stones started without warning, surreal at first then shocking. As with all good stories that start at the urinal, this one has a slight prologue. I was working at a Car dealership, after leaving another for a management position. My job there was called a Closer, the asshole that comes out when you say no to the inept salesperson who showed you the car. The salesmen whom sweated running around the building to find the one with leather in pewter, but they bring back a red one without a sunroof. Yup that’s me talking you into the red one because that one fits in your monthly budget. Yea I know you can see me doing that, well selling cars doesn’t make me a used car salesman, just a man who sold used cars!
    Now back to the stones, so standing at the pee tower, as a woman I knew called them, looking down at the stream of red, blood red talking True Blood red not that watered down orange. This never happened to me before, at that point in my life for the most part my health was very strong. Overweight, but for the most part still the young bull who hung with the best of them. It was 8:15, the sale meeting started at 8:30. My goal was to do the meeting and run to get a Dr. then the pain kicked in, straight to the Hospital I went.
          At the hospital they told me right away at the counter checking in, ohh honey you get them stones, me “Stones” she then explained what stones were. They take me in the back, CAT SCAN blood test, some very nice Dilaudid that made my cheeks warm, took away the pain and made it all bearable. Dilaudid is a hell of a drug, if you have kidney stones. After some time they sent me home scheduling an appointment for the next morning for Lithotripsy a procedure that requires you to be out under while they shake the shit out of the stones into small pieces so they can fish out the biggest ones while you expel the smaller ones later, at least they hope.
          So surgery day, at this time it was only my second time being put under. It was very nerve-racking, even though they give you drugs to calm you before you go in. Now remember what this is you in a hospital, in surgery with a room full of personnel, both Nurses doctors even some other random who knows what they do. Enough people that you realize you are about to display while unconscious, the most precious of body parts as well as the most vulnerable to the room. They in turn will stick a camera with a basket up, in and out, in again then out then back in as many times until it becomes too cloudy to see or they feel they retrieved the spiky little (relative people) bits of rock that you made. Think about that, they are like a short in the system no matter what it is a betrayal of the body to the mind. Yes we eat shitty food that causes stones, our body should know better. Brain says Ok let’s eat and be merry, do stuff that’s fun, makes you smile cause joy! Now the body, asshole that it is say’s hey brain “So you want to play, I’ll show you” and the body cuts off its nose to spite its face followed by a swift kick in the junk.
                  Recovery Room 1 :
       This was the best recovery ever in the many surgeries since then, around twelve procedures that required me being put under anesthesia. Four of them were lithotripsy, only once by this Quack son of donkey sadistic short savage. Up until this time Dr. Frankenstein had only talked to me when highly medicated or in extreme pain. In recovery he was kind; polite explained to me that he “got em all”. Cool two days in the hospital maybe one, then home to recover from the extremely draining experience. When lithotripsy is done they leave a stent in you to allow any pieces that need to pass, keep your urethra open so you can pee until the swelling subsides. The stent is attached to a black cord that is hanging out of the place it can only hang out from. I can barely keep a loose dollar in my pocket without dropping it this as puts a string in me for two weeks. The string is like sewing thread, needless to say it falls out causing me, big pause ,,,,,nothing because it slips my mind completely! My two week appointment comes up when he tells me about the dam string again, so in my simple mind this is simple you pee it out or it melts away like stitches, uh uh no dice pal. Mini Frankenstein explains, “It takes about five minutes, we do it in the office with a *(^&*9- which translates to a spear gun looking device with a long cable and on the end it has a Claw looks like a crane game claw, Colombo like he then turns and says oh I forgot it has a camera too. Recap: long wire, claw camera looks like a spear gun that shoots water up in you so it is comfortable.
    We decide to do it in two days as there was no way it was happening right there as a violation while having Propafal pumped in you is one thing. Wide awake before a work day is whole different thing, even though it’s a five minute deal, just a little pressure said that short lying IMP said. I get myself prepared but not really because there is nothing that rolled through my thoughts that made it easier.
Appointment day 9:30 am, usual wait then escorted to a room and told to disrobe waist down, no gown or modesty apron nothing but me and this chair with stirrups. Ladies you know the chair, except this one was old and sturdy like a electric chair. Sorry in advance for the mental image; in the chair open to the Dr. the two young nurses in the room, attractive at that one of which thankfully was looking me in the eyes to give me breathing instructions. WTF is going on is all that is going through my head, clench my teeth while staring at the ceiling. A critical mistake-my eyes betray me, open up and see the device a spear gun with a single scoop, a long thin wire with water shooting out, shit is about to as the kids say get real. I feel a pressure plenty while my bladder is filling beyond what they do, then the wire sliding down shooting water causing more pressure. The water is filling me up the claw is in with the camera, Frankenstein says “Calm down your making this hard” ten minutes in to a five minute procedure. Stomach in my throat all while my package has a spear gun attached with a short now angry savage peering thru a scope, just like a rifle scope with a savage Hobbit at the trigger. So after fifteen minutes of cast and retrieve this guy yelling at me, I kid not he had his foot up and was tugging, each tug pulling the entire region up and away, spear gun attached nurses shushing me him saying that I needed to calm down, the scene was now just chaos.
    Mercifully or maybe due to the tone in my voice he stopped pulling released the weapon, meekly saying it would be best if he did this in the hospital. I throw on my pants and tell them to have the nurse call me with the time and place. Hobbled, heading to the car my bladder cuts loose pissing myself uncontrollably till I drop trough in the parking lot making a puddle of very dark looking stuff. Back to the start pissing blood, only in a parking lot my life at this point is a Horror movie.
                Quick recap:  
Pee blood at work, get lithotripsy, lose string to stent and get severely violated by a mad dwarf with medieval weaponry starts me racing across town to the furthest ER possible.
    Here is the new mental image my shirt is pulled out of my slacks, tie around my shirt loosely hanging sweating profusely while obviously recently pissing myself. Bursting into the ER across the county as far as I was willing and able to go. Rather than safety my honesty caused e to be set up. These Dr’s who have a sadistic side to them, my seemingly sympathetic Dr. after hearing my story quickly called Dr. Hobbit Frankenstein, then instructing me to proceed to the ER right next to the Hobbits office, the one I just ran away from not where the spear gun is and the voice of Dr. Putz pulling at my junk telling me it is my fault, I needed to be calmer.
  Get to the Hospital; promptly get admitted for surgery that very evening. The Dr. Savage comes in, proceeds to yell at me for talking in a loud tone to his office manager, never happened causing him and I yet more tension! Going back to the O.R. ,a now familiar scene a room filled with now familiar masks. Who knows who is under that mask by the way, what if you’re in public and they see you. You do not know what they look like or who they are, yet they know you the dope that lost his string, the one hanging out of his penis, as  she chuckles to her girlfriend.
Recovery 2:
                     This was easy, not as the last time but they keep you pain free almost and bundled up like a baby only this time a catheter, nothing fun about Kidney stones-funny for sure fun, well not so much. Here is the punch line. DR Hobbit “Savage” Frankenstein is hopping up and down next to my gurney shaking a jar that was reminding me of a baby rattler. In the jar was a string, black string with what in his word was “BARNACLES”! This guy was pulling this string with all his gusto trying to drag those “BARNACLES” out of a hole that was never meant to pass anything put warm liquid. Moral if there is one besides avoid stones, don’t lose the string ever no matter what’s it is attached too.
Scott VS Liver Cancer

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Wednesday, May 23, 2012


I am daydreaming about my youth today!

       I have been exploring these thoughts all morning, what else carries over from our youth, under ten our “formative years”. Friends that I made then are still in my life, they know me better than most even if we only talk so often, when we do it is as if we never missed a beat. This theme has repeated itself over the years, particularly when the situation was immersive, school or work even the neighborhood that I lived in.  My opinion is that we begin to form our character early on. The way we will react to adversity or kindness.This also shows up in what our expectations from our parents and friends. We learn what we expect or feel is deserved to us may not be not reality, so we begin to live and we learn. The innocence of youth is what is most missed by me and many, of course you have to be self aware to know you are no longer innocent.
         As a kid in Brooklyn, then Queens the financial status of my family was lost to me. We could have been rich for all I knew, my Mom and Grandparents gave me everything that I wanted (food mainly) seriously toys and love. Who cared then about a backyard or swings we had schoolyards or the terrace, mostly there was so many kids to play with. That is what stuck the way we interact with each other that started at a time when we were like clay pliable and thick. Summers were the time that I looked forward to, the day when my Mom took me to that yellow line of busses in the Bronx. It started before that day, shopping for my trunk, the clothes that she sewed my name into or stamped on the sheets. Fishing pole some new sneakers. Not one of these things did I come home with, usually the clothes had some one else’s name on them everything else broken and lost to the great wilds of Copake. Camp friends are different than others, we had a bond that formed around some core issues, no parents having shacks with girls on the other side of our units. Camp counselors always seemed so much older than the kids that they were.
         I learned some things about camp that are so amusing to me know from the parents that sent us there for 9 weeks year after year. First thing is as soon as that last yellow bus turned off of Pelham Pkwy, our caring loving folks erupted into cheers, some going to celebrate their coming weeks of freedoms with cocktails and lord knows what else. Secondly the ones that I spoke to about this as an adult told me that they were so happy with the freedom that we were barely an afterthought for most of the summer. Back then the fears that we have now about safety, crazy bad things that happen to kids or so many modern worries simply did not affect them.  That ride to Copake is the longest two and a half hours, riding upstate watching the urban concrete of the Bronx fade into rolling hills of green grass kept me looking out the window in amazement.  
         These days there is not much that matches the emotion of wonder, with one exception, put me on a plane and drop me off in a different city. Then let me wander the streets, find the little haunts that that city holds dear all the while not really knowing where I am exactly.  With some more thought I will come up with some other stuff that might come close, but sadly my friends and I will never be divided into bunks, cabins or shacks again. Hey maybe we can just get some connecting suites at the Venetian, stroll around sin city and get tickets to Cirque de somehohahe.
Scott VS Liver Cancer
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Monday, May 21, 2012

          Where to go and what to do?

          The ebb and flow of having Cancer caused me to pull back from friends at times, seek out my friends at others. One of the first things that the obligatory Cancer books that were given to me made a great point, you cannot judge how your friends and loved ones act towards you anymore. The situation is such that it is hard for others to communicate with you, they feel they must spare feelings, watch what they say and generally all of that makes it awkward. It also lets everyone of the hook, as it should be to grow you have to let go. Letting go of expectations, projecting how you think others should act towards you because you’re sick is nothing but a pity party. From the experiences I have had with others with Cancer it has become painfully aware to me that it is hard to say the right thing at times. After all if a person with Cancer has a hard time figuring out what the right thing to say to another with Cancer, it must be even harder for a healthy concerned friend to always keep a conversation free of uncomfortable topics.
             This is another lesson that you need not get Cancer to learn from, stop expecting people to act the way you want them to, or get used to being disappointed or constantly annoyed. Pretty sure if you’re this way you know it or maybe this will turn on the light. We do not want to figure out what might offend you, so stop trying to be offended you selfish putz. Do not set us up for failure because you are so needy, lighten up drop the expectations let’s get back to being young at heart without the complexities of emotional baggage. If this is hitting home, sorry but check it out this is how we learn to be better humans. Now you know for me you cannot say the wrong thing, if you do I will tell you politely, we will move on and that’s that.
             The thing is that when my disposition had me not answering the phone, returning calls or communicating with people near to my heart it was a grave mistake. It felt hard to do, it was easier to just not deal with anyone.
      Well not any more I want to hear from everyone; life is too short when you have friends that are as amusing as mine. Half of you should be comics because you already act like clowns (just kidding), seriously travel great conversation this is what fills the soul. Life is not that hard as a matter of opinion it’s pretty easy you live every day. Short of you taking the big sleep on purpose tomorrow will come, the light of day will turn to night and yet day again.
     This blog needs to do one thing for me if at all possible, please send me some good ideas for short inexpensive trips. If anyone knows any travel agent type covert maneuvers pass them on, quickly please. Like I always hear someone tell me how they got comped at Harrah’s, why is it always Harrah’s by the way. No desire to zip line thru the Jungle and get flesh eating bacteria, or to sit in the sun all day we have that every day here in South Florida. This is why I need some help finding it out, by the way thank you in advance for the invitation, I am a shitty houseguest snore really loud wander in and out of the house at all hours and leave the TV on while I listen to podcasts. This leaves only Hotels, cabins in the woods or maybe an RV with a driver, or a Yacht yes a Yacht anyone have one they forgot about?

Scott VS Cancer
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Friday, May 18, 2012


It is so easy to do

       The truth is that there are no rules that are steadfast when it comes to our health, you all know the story about the marathon health nut who one day had a heart attack dropping dead at a young age. Then we say something to the sound of “When it’s your time”. When I say that Cancer taught me some valuable lessons this is one, one that makes me very happy to have learned.  A human can do everything with nothing but purity, a heart and soul of the Mother Theresa and change nothing
                   Steve jobs, Farrah Fawcet, Adam Yauch AKA MCA of the Beasties, and all three with unlimited resources, Doctors seeking them out to try to help cure their Cancer. Farrah documented her battle in a very public emotional way, she was surrounded by love traveled to different parts of the planet for help, desperately fighting. Steve Jobs was less open about his condition, for good reason but no less diligent in his efforts. I do not know very much about Adam Yauch’s efforts nut I do know this about him. He had the aforementioned resources; more importantly in my way of thinking he had something much more important he was right with the world. His fight to free Tibet while being a practicing Buddhist, charitable in money and spirit. Farrah the icon that had millions of fans, Jobs an innovator who employed so many creating a brand people the world over are dedicated consumers of. Yet they succumb to the disease.
                           Humbly without self deprecation thinking that the actions I take are better or different than anyone’s teaches me a simple lesson. There is nothing to fear or regret in this life, (unless you are a garbage human). What can you regret; we do good, sometimes not so much,----hey don’t be so hard on yourself . My friend’s family or people who I interact with, for no matter how brief let me know that my essence is good, as is yours.  This is a lesson to us all live life controlling what you can, be kind to strangers if you can afford it leave a big tip, if for you to leave 30% doesn’t hurt your budget why not give it to someone working hard whose day it just might change. I have a list of things that we can do every day that will make someone else happy. Hold that door, forgive others for their inability to understand this simple philosophy. Simply put be nice please, save your bad mood by putting someone else in a good one.
     You see the point, no matter what we all go, these Iconic people will be remembered for good. They put out positive energy, were taken early yet impacted millions in a positive way. Go through life being a creep and be remembered for just that. Me I would rather spread positive thoughts, when it’s time next week or twenty five years from now I will know that my time was spent well here.

Scott VS Liver Cancer
 Comments here!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012


Food is fun!

       We love food, if your reading this it is no secret that food has been one of life’s greatest indulgences. My first job was a bussing tables at the world famous Ben’s Best deli on Queens Blvd, here is a link to Bens Best still open after nearly sixty years. The greatest part of that job was the window to a bygone era, my grandparents youth by the eighty’s Deli’s were on the way out. Working there was a true Original career Deli Man, Howard his wife Beatrice worked with him as a waitress, an extremely sweet large Jewish couple Beatrice coddled me with food, Howard with stories about his youth they had warmth that felt like family. Comically straight out of central casting was Bob a waiter there who was probably sixty five plus, he surely had sleep apnea, he would fall out every time he sat for a break. With his gold jacket buttoned, climbing up over his expansive belly head doing touch and goes while Harold had a paper bag blown up tied and ready to pop, poor Bob always jumped out of his seat reaching for his trusty pad ready to take the next order.
      I got that job only because of my taste for those Hebrew National dogs grilled and crunchy, ordered simply as “one with” meaning deli mustard and kraut. When it was busy, the counter man would yell to the block man. An order comes in, the counterman yells to the Block guy 2 pistols with (pastrami with mustard on rye) etc, fast communication causing the men to move quickly with efficiency so the maximum amount of customers can be served fast.  Square Knishes, special cut fries bowls of pickles, sour half sour with sour tomatoes then the health salad. Even then I knew the health salad could not have been too healthy as they made it with a whole lot of sugar. Bens was a machine serving a loyal and large clientele. I to this day can make a living cutting Corned beef and Pastrami, and certainly would have fun doing it.
       My love affair with food from my neighborhood in Queens did not just begin and end with Bens, they was Pizza at Adili’s this and crispy that you can fold in half and it would crack down the middle., or a Sicilian slice from Tony’s a super thick light and airy dough with lots of sauce and cheese.  In between the Pizza places & Ben’s my young food addicted self found another indulgence at the Falafel king, Sol Levy’s family owned it, so maybe that is where my young palette had the nerve to try something so exotic at the time. This was falafel perfection each ball scooped and cooked when you ordered it hot and put in a soft pita with salad hummus and tahini. By the way all this food was under two bucks with a drink, try that now.
      I can go through every period of my life no matter where I lived; there is a comfort food there that brought me pleasure. Of course there are things in life I enjoy way more than food, not too many but a few. So now at this stage of my life all hat pizza is gone, ironically my dear friend owns some of the best pizza places in South Florida. I do not wish this on anyone, lactose intolerance is one mean son of a b**ch, it is truly like you have been poisoned. So Pizza nope, a hot dog, come on how can we eat hot dogs, nitrates lips butts and other unmentionable parts. Falafel is on the grid, Mr. Levy where are you because for sure you’re not near me. I am trying to just tell myself hey, self indulgence it’s just food and it is. It doesn’t mean that I can’t complain, often and loudly
        I will survive my kale shakes, gluten free dairy free pizza or whatever else may become my go to favorite, but it’s fun to reminisce.
        On another note thank you so much for the responses it is so great that you have read this, I look forward to doing this for a long time, so they will improve over time. I will be adding links to some great websites, podcasts or whatever that might be interesting. If you have a site or a blog and would like to trade links please email me.
Scott VS Liver Cancer

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Lucky or Not?

        There is nothing new to this situation of mine, so many of us if not all have been touched by Cancer or some other illness that takes our loved ones early. An illness a disease as horrific as it is most of the times gives some time for us to prepare our hearts and minds for what may come.  My particular situation is a long term thing, with care, luck and the support, not limited just to family and friends but caring health professionals my disease will be treated as a chronic one. This is going to give me time, hopefully a long time. This gives me a unique perspective of observation and reflection, often this leads to a positive change, letting go of the nonsense and living in the positive. So is this “luck”? Can’t be considered lucky to have Stage 4 liver Cancer, for sure it was lucky to be caught early. Extremely lucky that my Aunt Susan stopped on a TV station that I never would have and found my Oncologist. Even luckier he happened to be talking about liver Cancer at that exact moment. Some may call that divine intervention, others may call it fate me all of the above and lucky.
       Now when it comes time to feel bad for myself it only takes a moment for me to snap out of it, you see how many times in our lives was luck not even a factor. Just yesterday it was told to me that a healthy and happy man was on his way to work, he was the victim of another driver’s mistake. This mistake took his life leaving behind all of his loved ones. His family had no time to prepare their hearts and minds for this; he was just ripped away in a moment by a tragic mistake. I have many stories like this, so how dare I have a pity party for myself when this can happen, to any of us including me or you. Death comes for us all, for me it may or may not come sooner than it should. For sure being able to understand mortality is an advantage over the suddenness of a tragic accident.
      So luck is clearly about perspective, any situation can be looked at from many sides but how do you reconcile having your loved one ripped away. You don’t it is just life we grieve and we go forward, that is what any of us would want if it was us that passed over.

Monday, May 14, 2012

         Cancer: Improvement in Personal Habits?

 Cancer is a pain in the ass, while this can be the understatement of the week or a lifetime it really is. the Medicine, Doctors plus all the ancillary bullshit. You learn to deal with so many different things that you just would not expect to ever happen to you, I am only 45 not 90. So when I wake up creaking and grunting it is like someone else is in the room, an old version of Scott. Today I had somewhere to be at 8:30 am so of course, my alarm was set for 7, 7:20 & 7:45 none of these even stirred me. So when at 9:00 I get up jump in the shower and race within reason to my destination, it occurs to me that since this started my terrible habit of being the last minute arrival has changed. It is not at all common for me to get anywhere on time now I am always early. How did this happen, then more self reflection since. Cancer I am neater, better at follow through and almost a responsible guy. Now B.C. it wasn't like my habits were awful, but I was that guy late for meetings by three minutes, without getting into the ugly details lets just say there was a positive shift in my personal habits.

             I noticed this prior to today, here is why this is happening to me right now. When you here the news that you have a life threatening illness that most people do not survive three years with, most people I spoke to say they went through a bucket or two of personal reflection. It's gotta to be different for everyone, we all have such diverse experiences that it can only be such. What would you do? What would you ask yourself? Will you be scared or blame someone anyone including yourself. The answer is yes and no, with the grace of god you will not have to ask yourself these hard questions.
        Now I have stated that Cancer is a pain in the ass, but wait in some ways it has made me a better man. I am patient, a better listener, more giving of myself  and most of all a positive thinker. My appreciation and patience for other peoples quirks has gotten to the point where truly no blame exists in my heart. All this comes from letting go of the nonsense. What I can suggest to you is that when you get super pissed at some situation that is out of your control, take a minute to reflect about what is really happening. You got cut off at a light, some asshole didn't signal so you are ready to throw rocks at their car. Some one cut the line at the movie theater, getting their popcorn like a full two minutes before you. Now of course there is plenty that will still piss me or any sane human off, it is just simpler to let it go. Why waste the time in your day to spend one second reflecting on those who are simply less enlightened. Burdened down by the minutia in life is no way to live, find something you love and do it. Enjoy the the simplest things around you, the free stuff like a great conversation with someone you barely know. What ever it may be just let go of the trivial, embrace the light side of the moment while never letting yourself succumb to the petty bullshit that can come out of no where and ruin a perfectly great day.

  I am not perfect nor do I have any insight to how this works for everyone, for me right here and right now, my new found insight to letting go of the unneeded emotion of contempt or anger at some trivial bullshit is working great.

This blog thing requires that my commitment to it stay constant, I will be adding links to sites that you may find interesting. I have enabled comments so if you choose to leave any and can't email me right away at . Or email me just to say hello

Scott VS Liver Cancer

Saturday, May 12, 2012

One of the things that people tell me when they find out I have Cancer is that I do not look sick. I am so lucky to be in this position, so far into this not visibly ill. You see the cancer patient who is ravaged by Chemo, the disease with all it brings along. Often a patient is so filled with Chemo & other meds that the needed treatments cause so many shit side effects their general condition is rough. Appearance is often the first to go, losing hair weight and muscle tone. This is a result of what is called systematic therapy, IV Chemotherapy, Radiation and who knows what else. Dr #1 started me on Carpolplatin mixed with some other nasty stuff in bag, he was not very optimistic about my future. It was an instant road to feeling very bad.
When a person finds out they have Cancer it’s not like you can ever forget when you heard it first. Some people get the news from the family Doc. Some believe it or not hear it from a receptionist reading back results. Yet others must hear like a movie where the Dr. calls you in with the family and everyone sits on the edge of the chair, while Doc say we will do everything we can the team is in place fear not!
My experience was quite different almost humorous for sure surreal, it was week two of my extended hospital stay with a bacterial infection from kidney stones that have been plaguing me for months prior. A sharp attending physician ordered a biopsy of a troublesome spot on my Liver, when I asked him what he thought it was prior to the biopsy he said no idea. This lead to the slippery slope of Ok what is the worst case, he says Cancer but there are hundreds of things between a spot and Cancer. So I get the biopsy from a German Dr. with square glasses playing classic rock (fool in the rain played) while he took a really long tool that captured a piece of the spot. You’re awake for that deal, ultrasound and a big claw like needle thing the classic rock, German Doc low lighting strange but painless.
The time when you know things are wrong is when tests take too long to come back.* The Dr said that biopsy results take two days, mine took six. So now on my third week in the hospital around six o’clock is when we get the news. The details are just as surreal as the rest of this ride, that story is for another day. What is important to this is how after four and a half years with Stage 4 Liver Cancer how I still look decent and function daily. It is due to the treatments I receive, a resection, Sirs Microspheres or Y90, Chemoembolization and mostly Oral Chemo as opposed to a systematic regiment of Chemo and or radiation. My luck is strange, on the one side I have Liver Cancer the other is I function very well for a long term Cancer patient.
So in this part of Scott Vs Liver Cancer, Scott’s winning on several fronts: Outlived the original Diagnosis, still on my feet with more hair than ever. I have the energy to do life.

Scott Vs Liver Cancer
Thanks so much

So Why Now?

The opening shot

So Why Now?
        It has been over four years since the Dr. informed me that indeed the spot on my Liver was Cancer, not some innocuous fatty tissue or bruise but Stage 4 Metastatic Adenocarcinoma. Of course now my experiences have taught me what that really means while at the time I had no idea, really not a clue. I thought there were ten stages so 4 was under the 50% mark, people beat cancer all the time it would be dealt with that's that. Over four years later it's time to share what my experiences, my hope is that others can gain insight. My friends can see what state of mind, health and body that I am in. So many people just have a hard time communicating with that eight hundred pound gorilla sitting in the room. Therapeutically my explanation to what it is like to live under what can feel like impending doom. (I smiled big when I wrote that).
  This is the rub only 5% of all Liver Cancer patients make it past 5 years, the way I feel now is that 5 years is going to come and go with me still here. The multiple treatments, surgeries & medications have all done their job, not perfectly but enough to extend my life, allowing the Dr’s to treat my condition like a chronic disease rather than a fatal one. I have learned how deadly Cancer is, seeing others succumb within months. This is just reality, this is very important for any sick person to know the reality of the situation they face. When you learn what is possible you can mentally prepare for what’s coming.
  Right after I was diagnosed Patrick Swayze announced that he had Pancreatic Cancer, my ignorance at the time led to some dark thoughts about his reality. My initial emotional response was frustrating, here was a guy who not only had unlimited resources but great Dr's will seek him out to try saving him, I would be seeking out Dr's who would just get me a Pet Scan (my first Dr told me it was unnecessary treatment). So pissed off at Patrick Swayze for him getting Cancer Care that I couldn't yet not even understanding how deadly his disease was. When he died I wept like a baby, if he could not beat it how can I?
Four years and several months later, my luck is holding. I feel good more days than not, my spirit is strong while whatever treatment is presented will be pursued. My family is close by, too much distance between myself and many people that are dear to me, this has to change. This Blog is going to help with that, Patrick may be keeping baby out of corners, while making sure Demi is getting through her crisis but I owe him. His terrible tragedy taught me that it is not the money or the access to Dr’s, it is a mix of luck chasing down the right care while staying positive that you will keep pushing every day.
  Thanks for reading this I hope that you get something good from this one day, I will try to keep it interesting so stick with me.
Scott VS Liver Cancer