Sad Songs Are Nature's Onions

"For the sickness, that be spreadin with the quickness Remedies, cousin I be doin on my enemies Penalty, then I drink forties to they memories" - "Release Yo' Delf" by Method Man

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Old And Busted: Live Aid

New Hotness: Lymphomapalooza

This Saturday! Be there ! Be There! BE THERE! Saturday, Saturday, SATURDAY! Come for the bands, stay for the Lymphomapalooza Solid Gold Dancers and TRUCKASAURUS!

Saturday, August 27th
The One World Cafe, 2412 Agricola St, Halifax, NS
Windom Earle
Juan Love
7 PM

On unrelated news, yesterday I made a totally kick-ass black bean soup and some jalapeno cornbread. I'm beginning to think that I missed my calling in life. If I thought for a minute that I could handle the stress of working in a busy restaurant kitchen, I would start training to become a chef in a heartbeat. Maybe I could just skip working in the restaurant business, and move straight onto getting my own cooking show. All Things Food And Boozy, with Master Chef Iain Gillis. I like the sound of that.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

That's A Big Negatory, Good Buddy. 10-4.

So I finally got the results back from the biopsy of the bone chip they took out of my hip while I was in the hospital. Peep dis':

Mr. Gillis: The bone marrow biopsy report of July 21, 2005 is as follows:

Normal bone marrow
Negative for malignancy

Signed Allam Shawna MD, FRCPC

Booyah. My bone marrow rules.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Meanwhile, Back At The Ranch...

A suitably crazy send-off for one of the craziest bastards to ever "stomp the terra".

P.S. - Go to the benefit show on Saturday. For every dollar raised, I'll eat a spoonful of cottage cheese. Honest. And I hate cottage cheese. I'll do it though, really. I'll just sit on the side of the stage and eat tub after tub of cottage cheese all night. It'll be like performance art. You don't want to miss that now, do you?

Monday, August 22, 2005

Give Me Back My Spinal Fluid

Friday's trip to the hospital was a trip to Spinal Tap City (also known as a Lumbar Puncture). Nothing like a needle in the spine to start your weekend off right. This was the second one I've had so far, and this one was much more enjoyable than the first. Mind you, I use the word 'enjoyable' here as a relative term, as in "getting hit in the face with a mallet was much more enjoyable than getting hit in the groin with a sledgehammer". The procedure itself if only a few minutes, and painless once the freezing kicks in, but can often come with the annoying side effect of constant headaches for a few days. This is due to the fact that your spinal fluid is being fucked around with, and the brain gets all pissy when that happens. So, most of the weekend for me was spent nursing headaches. Meh. They've stopped, and I'll take headaches any day over nausea, so it's all gravy.

Headaches didn't stop me from making a kick ass meal yesterday though. Thai-flavoured mussels with steamed jasmine rice (thanks to Kathryn, rice-cooker extraordinaire), and a Thai salad. My quest to become Iron Chef Cape Breton continues unabated.

Oh, and thanks to Jennifer, Kelly, and Amala for the fruit basket. Iain likey the free shit.

Finally, for those in the Halifax area, make sure to make it out to Lymphomapalooza this Saturday. The One World Cafe. 7 PM. Windom Earle. Juan Love. Hotshotrobot. Be there, square.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Idle Hands Are The Devil's Playground, Or Some Such Nonsense

I'm starting to get used to this non-working thing. With all this free time on my hands, I'm becoming quite the productive little person. I've been perfecting my cooking skills for one. Some of the highlights from the past few weeks: African Peanut-Pineapple Stew, Spicy Cajun Skillet Beans (both courtesy of my brand new Moosewood Restaurant cookbook), and some awesome Chicken and Bean Burritos, courtesy of my new slow-cooker. As I type this, my slow cooker is currently at work cooking up some Greek-style chicken with couscous. I'm thinking about starting my own cooking show: The Slow Cooking Cancer Patient. The title may need some work, but we're still only in the planning stages.

Also, I've been busy at work in an attempt to digitize my music collection. Yes, I am a huge nerd. Some random thoughts on that:

- I bought a bunch of electronica CDs in the mid-to-late-90's that are complete shit (Exit Planet Dust by the Chemical Brothers is still listenable, though).

- I don't own any Rick James albums. This needs to be rectified.

- My Parliament Greatest Hits CD is lonely. I needs some more Parliament/Funkadelic in there.

- My late-70's British punk collection is getting to be quite respectable. I just need some Jam, Wire, and maybe some Adverts to fill it out.

- I sometimes forget how awesome Public Enemy were. Whenever I catch a 50 Cent or Enimem video on TV these days, I weep for the state of hip hop.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Lymphomapalooza Update

The dude on the poster is my dad, in case anybody is wondering. Stephan is a big fan of my dad. Probably his biggest fan. If my dad had a fanclub, Stephan would definitely be president.

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"I love bald men. Just because you've lost your fuzz don't mean you ain't a peach." - Dolly Parton

Behold: Iain, Version 2.0:

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Luckily for me, my skull is a fairly uniform shape, with no major birthmarks, scars, or protrusions. I could get used to this bald thing.

And for shits and giggles, here's a picture of me and the little lady:

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Friday, August 12, 2005

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow

Hopefully by the end of this weekend, I shall be rid of my luscious locks (before they fall all over my pillows and shit). That's right, The Great Hair Migration Of 2005 has begun in earnest. Now I can finally get my chance to join my favorite steet gang: The Baldies

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You all have seen The Wanderers, right? If not, for shame.

The Post Chemo Weekly Wrap-Up Extravaganza

Third chemo session today. It was the same as last week. I was supposed to have another spinal tap today (they call it a "lumbar puncture", but "spinal tap" sounds much cooler, for obvious reasons), where they would inject me with intrathecal methotrexate. This was postponed because my white blood cell counts are a bit low. So, all sick people (and people who don't wash their hands... you know who you are) keep your distance this week. I need an infection or a flu like I need a cancerous mass in my chest (hey, wait a second...). Aside from that, everything else checked out fine this week, and I'm feeling peachy, so bully for me.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Judgement Day Is Nigh

So here is the first stab at a poster for the show. I like where this is going.

Stephan is insane. God and Baby Jeebus bless him.

Oh yeah, one more bit of news - here is the tentative band list so far:

Windom Earle
Sharp Like Knives
Juan Love


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Iain Aid 2005 (or maybe Lymphomapalooza?)

So it looks like my good friend Stephan, A.K.A. Windom Earle, has booked a venue for a benefit concert here in Halifax in honour of yours truly. I cannot begin to describe how cool this is. Whether I deserve a benefit concert in my honour is another thing, but I'll take it. As I get more information on this, I will post it here. If the date or venue changes, I'll also post that here. Either way, I encourage any of youse peoples here in the Halifax area to come out to the show. I have no idea who is playing, but I can assure you that it'll be a good time for the entire family (except maybe Grandma - her ticker might not be able to take it). I'll definitely be making an effort to attend, but that of course depends on how I am feeling that day. There have only been a small handful of days during my treatment so far that I have felt really sick, so I should be good to go then. We'll see. On another note, my brother is trying to organize a show in Sydney for me as well. Maybe we could turn this into a cross-Canada travelling revue or something.

The Date: August 27, 2005
The Place: One World Cafe
2412 Agricola St., on the corner of Agricola and West St.
The Bands: TBA
The Cost: TBA
The Time: TBA

Monday, August 08, 2005

"That's a pretty fucking good milkshake. I don't know if it's worth five dollars but it's pretty fucking good. "

I'm starting to feel a bit guilty. There is no way that someone undergoing intense chemotherarpy should be feeling as good as I do right now. I have felt better in the last few days than I have since I first started feeling sick back in early July. Ah well, I'm sure that they'll be days in the future when I won't be feeling too shit hot, so I might as well enjoy the good days now while they last.

My weekend was fantastic: Friday was dinner and a movie night with Kathryn (my girlfriend and occasional homecare nurse, for those not in the know), Saturday was a Bayer's Lake shopping excursion in the afternoon, with another movie and late-night snack in the evening. Sunday, myself and the little lady went out for some brunch and then down to the waterfront to soak up some busker action. However, the best part wasn't actually the buskers, but the super cool carichature guy we found. When he asked us what theme we wanted for our carichature, I just threw out the idea of putting us in the scene from Pulp Fiction where Uma Thurman and John Travolta are eating $5 milkshakes and bloody-as-hell burgers in Jackrabbit Slim's. He had never drawn that scene before, but I think that the result below speaks for itself. I threw in a picture of Kathryn and I (and Kaitlin) for comparison purposes. Kathryn is the one in the pink, and I of course am the handsome motherfucker on the right. He even threw in the Ed Sullivan-impersonator MC. I was quite impressed, I must say.

If anything, this weekend has taught me that I would look abso-fucking-lutely ridiculous in a ponytail.

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Friday, August 05, 2005

Zofran? We don't need no steenking Zofran!

My second chemo treatment was today. It was lighter than last week's, in that I just received one IV chemo drug (Vincristine), as opposed to two (the vincristine, and some long-named red stuff that turned my urine a nice shade of pink). The good thing is that nausea isn't a side effect of the vincristine, so this means that this week should go even smoother than last week. Another bonus is that I shouldn't have any need to take my super-expensive anti-nausea medication, Zofran, for a while. I'm not sure how much it actually costs, since I was given my first month of pills for free, but one nurse mentioned something along the lines of $30 a pill or some such crazy shit. Kind of makes you want to get into the pharmaceutical business. If I can help it, I'm sticking with cheepo over the counter Gravol, thank you very much.

In short, I'm feeling better now than I have been in over a month, and the treatment is moving ahead on schedule and with no copmplications so far. Thanks to everybody for all the well-wishes and shit. I'm out this bitch. Aight.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Fetch Me My Brain Medicine

So the chemo is in full swing. I've got more chemicals and pills inside of me now than Keith Richards, but I'm feeling okay so far. The occasional spell of nausea sucks ass, but most of the time I've felt pretty good. One of my chemo drugs turned my pee pink for a day. That was sorta cool. The good thing about all of this is that I'm getting hit the hardest at the beginning, so over time my body should adjust to the treatment and deal with it better. More chemo Friday. I'm fired up.

I am Godzilla, my lymphoma is Japan.