Sunday, April 07, 2013

best self-appointed oncologist yet

Leafy greens are good for your health.
Friday morning I met Kathy and Bronwyn for a writing date at Buster’s while waiting for the chemo hangover to kick in. I caught up on Bronwyn’s new job and Kathy’s lizard adventures at the Natural History Museum and worked on a freewrite about how one of my characters first encountered a frozen rabbit fetus, in order to postpone outlining.

When Bronwyn and Kathy left, a guy with dreadlocks approached the table. “Do you mind if I ask you something?”

Not to presume what it might be, but let’s see, the last two strangers to strike up a conversation at Buster’s had said, respectively, “You’re so brave!” and “Why you not have hair?”

“I couldn’t help but overhear you talking about an oncologist,” he said. “Do you have cancer?”

“Yeah, I’m going through cancer treatment,” I said, because the chemo is for hypothetical, microscopic, undetected cancer. The only cancer we knew about for sure is gone, bitches.

“Have you tried medical cannabis?”

“Sort of…. I mean, I haven’t had a really hard time with chemo side effects or anything.”

For years, I would explain to people that I just didn’t get high when I smoked. Some benevolent pothead in the group would say, That’s because you’re not doing it right. I’ll get you high. Then they’d try, and I wouldn’t feel anything stronger than I’d get from a couple of sips of wine. Finally, I stopped taking drags when joints were passed around because I realized that to do so would officially mean I was smoking just to look cool.

“Is it okay if I pray for you?” Dreadlocks asked.

“Sure, thanks.”

He bowed his head and retreated. I kept working on my freewrite. When he left a while later, he handed me a lumpy, folded envelope and whispered, “For your health.”

That’s what I call faith in action, y’all.

6 comments:

lesbrain said...

I have no weed to give you but if you ever need to do research on the ways of rabbits, I've got two bunnies who'd love to meet you!!!!

Alanna Lin said...

How do I "like" this?

Sizzle said...

This is a sweet story. Though if the guy with dreadlocks is white, it's ruined for me. ;-)

bronwyn said...

this story gives me hope for humanity.

Claire said...

Aw, Dreadlocks sounds nice. And gets points for practicality even if it's a bit dodgy.

Cheryl said...

L: I may take you up on that! Still figuring out just how big a plot point the whole rabbit fetus thing is....

AL: I'll consider it liked. I like you.

S: You'll be pleased to know he was an African-American gentleman, or at least partly.

B: Humanity lives at Buster's.

C: Right? I was like, way to walk the walk!