On Smoking and Other Indulgences

Recently—a week ago—on June 1st, 2017 and (as one of the countless apps I have on my phone informed me) the 20014th day of my life—I finally received full absolution to do whatever I wish.

I can drink (which I never stopped), smoke (which I stopped—not quit, mind you, stopped—eleven years, four months and four days ago to date, but can start over with no effort whatsoever*), talk (if I suddenly want to), leave the toilet seat in an upright position, touch art in museums, and cross the street on a red light.

The last chemo cocktail—as it happens often—is poisoning me a lot faster than my pet alien (the son of a bitch is only 268 days old, he is young and determined to grow and blossom), which is resulting in successfully putting down whatever I still have that is—forgive the jest—not down.

The pet is working rather enthusiastically, too—the latest development in my condition due to his interference with my lymphatic system resulted in noticeable swelling of my lower body. I now look like a centaur which was put together on an experimental conveyor, where they use elephants or hippos instead of horses. My new physical incarnation makes it difficult to walk even with the cane, but without one, any trip around the apartment or office needs to be carefully calculated; much like a chess move.

Radiation therapy in my case is not applicable—just like it never was—my pet has grown and spread to the point that is is much simpler to amputate my head first (just to make sure not to nuke anything extra), and then see if it is worth to continue with radiation: amputation usually works right away, though, so they might just stop there.

But I am not completely out of options.

The next possible stage of treatment (and the last chance to change anything)—immunotherapy, the essence of which has been successfully explained to me many times and went just as successfully over my head. Something to do with my stem cells.

They did not give me an estimated time, likely because I did not ask. It will be clear—I hope—after the immunotherapy—if it happens, for I still have to be approved for it. It might take weeks.

Back to the much more entertaining (I hope) story:

The word count is now 538,495 give or take a few, and Chapter Twenty-Seven: Things at One’s Disposal is finished! Yeeee-ha. Go me. Atta boy.

And so on.

And I am not done with the first draft yet.

I am desperately trying to fit what I have left of the story into three more chapters so the total will be thirty—I like round numbers—and so far it looks feasible: I only have to describe the events of one night, one day, and another night. I can do that!

The rest will go into the Epilogue, I promise.

Time is pressing.

I remember, stop it, March.

* I found that mixing pipe tobacco—which, by the way, fills the apartment with a rather pleasant smell as an added benefit—with a certain substance makes that substance much easier to inhale in comparison with it in its pure form, and gives me much better control of the final effect on my body. Smoking Cannabis straight makes me cough and hits too heavily. So, the pipe it is—I still have mine after all these years, along with a trusty Zippo and even a steam-punk-ish leather holster for it, which at some point I repurposed to carry my iPod Nano; now the original inhabitant has returned and successfully reclaimed its place.

Also published on Medium.

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