more food movies

This was dinner last night.

Bracing myself today to head back in for more juice.
Sunday is always a little mixed. It’s about as good as I can feel, but with a twinge of anxiety about monday morning. Oh well. Another round will be over before I know it.

Hill is back!

What an amazing relief.  Emily did an excellent job while she was gone of helping with the dog, and doing grocery runs, and being a generally awesome roommate.  Still, it is awfully nice to have my wife back.  And it creates many more snuggle opportunities at night for putney.  Twice as many and twice as LONG legs to get tangled up in.

I made her some pretty nice welcome home food.  Braised/grilled octopus on top of some nice mache and chickpea confit.  Cornmealed cod and nova scotia pan roasted potatoes with greek inspired olive caper sauce that was outrageous.  That really sounds like “with a” food..  which I’m generally against.  I guess if I were serving this in a restaurant it would just be called, octopus salad, and cod with potatoes.

I shot the mise en place for this one..

Missing is the cara cara orange reduction vinaigrette for the mache.  ooooh…  faaancy.  Oh well.

As a brief side note I would just like to say, that while I am not able to work these days, I AM able to put food on the table 13 nights out of 14.  It is only on the first day of a round of the heavy stuff that I am layed so low that I can’t cook.  A shred of usefulness that keeps me from feeling that I am purely a drain these days.

I have a cold.  GAH!!  It is somehow..  miraculously.. the first cold that I’ve had since my original diagnosis.  Seriously.  Last winter even, when I was “cured” (remember? ha!), I didn’t succumb to the winter flu.  Something that I have done at least once a year the whole time I’ve lived in NYC.  I thought perhaps that this was one of the strange upsides to having cancer.. and cancer treatment: no more colds!  Like maybe all that toxic shit just made my body too unwelcome a place for viruses.  Nope.  Bloody cold.  I’m hoping it passes through quickly on this off week before I start up the real stuff again.

I went in for the erbitux yesterday.  Pretty uneventful.  A nice walk across the park and back.  The stuff is ravaging my face and head at the moment.  I’m not looking particularly cute (so you get pictures of food).  The doc said I could do a quick round of tetracycline, which usually clears it up a bit.  Just so I don’t look quite so mangy.  I told him about the cold, though my voice was probably a give away.  More gleeful hand rubbing.

“You know, that’s actually GOOD?”

“Yeah yeah.. I’ve heard all about the fact the cold symptoms are really just a healthy immune system’s response to invading viruses..   bla bla..”

“Yes! but also it will encourage the growth of lymphocytes which are helpful in the….”

“you’re making this shit up.”  (though I looked it up just now, and in fact, one of the types of lymphocytes, NK cells (Natural Killer cells.. Not Kidding), DO actually defend the host from growing tumors!)

Had I known this earlier, I would have spent more time touching door knobs in public places and rubbing faces with snot nosed kids in the neighborhood..  (“HEY!  what are you doing with my kid!!??”  “Curing cancer, ma’am..  nothing to worry about”)

A note to those who requested that the snowy phone photo go up on etsy.  It is there.  Thanks for the encouragement.

from the ether

The following message appeared on my flickr stream last night, and I felt I should republish it here:

Dear Cancer, sorry for my bed english, bud I wanted to write you this letter for long time. You are not right here, because, not any of Ezras frient or any meber of the family including dog, needs you to come and test, if our love is strong enough. Ezra is working well, you fuck, and we need his photos and bikes. If you don’t like to ride bikes, it doesen’t meen, that others don’t like it, you know. If you don’t like dogs, it doesen’t meen that others don’t love them you fucking egoist. Ezra is here with us, and you, FUCK OF HERE!!!. Your sincerely Janis. Hold on Ezra.

Janis, your bed english is perfect.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

I’m guzzling down a cup of coffee and then heading off to see the doc about this bloody fistula.  News as the day progresses.


Already back from the doc.  There is nothing wrong.  He took a look at the pocket and probed a little, found that it was very shallow, and not in fact a tunnel into my insides.

His explanation about where all the blood had come from was pretty vague, but he was clearly not concerned..  So neither am I.

I walked home through central park.  It’s snowing.  Fresh beautiful falling snow in the park.  Walking around the reservoir, a whole flock of seagulls sitting on a piece of ice out in the middle.  What a beautiful world!  Hardly another soul around.

Now I think I’ll go play a little pool.


Thank you all for the encouragement.  For better or worse, this photo is now available on Etsy.  You said to print it.  I was skeptical.  I tweaked and prodded a little, and ended up with a print that I think is quite beautiful.  Who would have thought!!?  (well, I guess a few of you did..)

break’s over

I went back on the juice yesterday.  It’s not the worse round I’ve had, but I did wake up feeling like I’d been beaten with bats.  Hill took off for North Carolina this morning, to visit family.  My reprieve last week screwed up the schedule a little, and she was a little anxious about leaving while I was in the middle of a treatment..  so far so good, though.  She’s been gone for about 20 minutes.

Something strange happened last friday.  I got out of bed and scratched my ass on the way to the bathroom to take a pee..  My hand came up bloody.  “Hey baby, look at this!”  I showed her my hand.  “What on earth is that!?”  “Not sure,” I said, and tried the other hand.  Same thing.  Covered with blood.  Then I started noticing it running down the backs of my legs.  WTF!!  I jumped in the shower leaving a trail of blood on the floor, and stayed in there until it stopped.  There’s a spot towards the top of my perineal incision that isn’t entirely closed..  I’m trying to think of some simple sewing analogy to help explain it, but can’t really.  Anyway.  There’s a bit of a hole back there..  about half way up to the top of my ass crack.  And on friday it gushed blood.  Weird.  Then yesterday again as I was getting out of bed, though not as bad.  I showed it to the doc.  “Hmm… Looks like a fistula..”  (he heee!!!   A Fistula in my Asstula!!  How do you keep a straight face for that!).  Apparently we have to find out how deep it goes, perhaps by injecting some sort of contrast into it and taking xrays..  or another cat scan..  something.  Then it has to be cleaned out and closed.  More surgery possibly.

I’m feeling like such hell from the chemo, that I can’t imagine heading in to see the surgeon for a few days yet, but it may be out of my hands.  We’ll see what happens when I go in today.

I’m through the worst of this round.  I get the oxaliplatin on the first day, and that’s the one that really seems to knock me sideways.  Nausea, and numbness in the hands, and occasionally serious aches and pains.  Generally, though, by day two I’m able to see the light at the end of the tunnel.  I’ll go in today for Erbitux and more leukovorin..  Then home with the pump over night (I have pierogies and kielbasa waiting for me for dinner.  The only advantage to Hill being gone is that I get to cook stuff she’s not normally too excited about!).  Unplugged tomorrow, and with any luck straight to the pool hall for some meditation!  (that bloody fistula *te heeee!!!* might derail my plans a little, though).