January 29, 2007

I am such a Wii-Knee

Perhaps I'll be the first to post a story about such a phenomenon? I have to give credit where credit is due however, it was my brother-in-law that coined the term.

Yes, I was suffering from 'Wii-Knee' over the weekend. For those of you who may not be familiar with the term 'Wii' [pronounced 'we'], it is a new video game console from Nintendo. It was sort of a run away hit over the holidays. What makes it unique is that you wave the remote control around to play the game. Tennis, swing the remote like a tennis racket, bowling, golf, baseball, etc. swing the remote like the club, bat or racket.

Well Friday night I played a few games of tennis and towards the end, I twisted a little too much and 'tweaked' my knee. I thought nothing of it but then Saturday morning when we played disc golf I noticed I was having problems squatting down. It didn't effect my game (more on that later) but occasionally there was a twinge of pain. (side note, Mary has forbid me from playing for awhile! Just when I was getting the backhand kill shot down!!)

I mentioned it to Rich while playing disc golf Saturday morning and his response was "You have Wii-knee!" which led to 'you are a wii-knee' etc., all directed my way with the light heartiness I have come to expect from our group.

Saturday we played birthday disc golf. We played teams again because the group was large enough. After flipping for partners I realize Joe and I are partnered again. Usually this would be good news as Joe is the best player in the group. However, over the last three or four months Joe and I have been paired together and the results have been horrible. We'll play well in every aspect of the game, except when it comes to putting. I think the last time we might have even finished last!

I looked at Joe and said 'not today, not on my birthday!". In an attempted to shorten this post, we came through shooting a '-4', winning by five or six strokes!
Saturday night I had dinner with my favorite person in the world, Mary and four other people that rank right up there, my brother and sister in law (who shares a birthday with me...although her first birthday came a couple of years after mine.) and Pete and Joe.
It was fantastic! A great meal (Ahi Tuna for me) with great company! I couldn't have hoped for a better birthday!!
Sunday we got up and played in the 'Ice Bowl'. The Ice Bowl is an annual international event where each local disc golf club holds their own tournament. The money raised goes to a local charity of choice (the Bishop Sullivan Center here in KC). There are three rules for the Ice Bowl: - It cannot be canceled regardless of the weather
- No wimps, No whiners
- No excuses

We played last year as well when the weather was a balmy 60 degrees. Yesterday at 8:30am the temperature was a little different; 13 degrees!! The only thing that made it bearable was the fact there was little to no wind. I was never cold though. With four layers of clothes on top, a ski mask (thanks to Rich), two pairs of socks and 'hot hands' pocket warmers it was an all together beautiful morning. Our group of six was the second group out so we were done by 10:45. I ended up shooting +1 (55) which was good enough for about 30th place out of 210 players. We left for a few hours, enjoyed some steaming hot chicken chili and returned for the last nine holes at 3pm. Joe and I struggled in the woods and ice, Rich shot even par and likely placed in the top 20!! Official results have not been published.

We ended the day with a nice family gathering and enjoyed a great dinner complete with a delicious angel food cake that Mary made topped with fresh berries. All together, it was the birthday weekend I was hoping I would experience; full of family, friends, great food and good times!!!!

January 26, 2007

For other reasons.....

Tomorrow I turn 44. Usually not a real eventful or 'milestone' birthday. After 21, what else is there to look forward to? For me however, they've become more important milestones once again. the feeling reminds me of when we were little and you looked forward to being ten, or thirteen, etc., it didn't matter, it was still an important accomplishment.

Now for me, every single year becomes an important milestone, another year older, another year filled with time shared with family, friends, life and of course, another year of beating this monster back!

So I submit this blog, on my Birthday Eve. I am thankful to God for another year and I pray to that same God for many, many, many more.
As to not end this on a somber note, let's all think of the Geiko commercial. The little short guy (I guess it's not PC to call him a midget? "Height challenged" perhaps? Whatever, it's my blog!), so the midget is standing there,and he sings "Oh, yeah, it's my birthday....." Everyone together now, "Oh, yeah, it's my birthday....."

January 23, 2007

Our own little 'Band of Brothers'

There is a friend of mine, I've mentioned him before, he's a guy that I've worked with in the past, and now he has PC. He's much more private about the whole affair than I am, but then again, who isn't!! Anyway, in response to my last post, he sent me a long note that included this passage. With his permission, I would like to share it with you:

"I've been a soldier who has given as good as he got, I've been a cop.. I've had 2 heart attacks and 1 mini stroke.. Now I have PC... If anyone says they are not scared, they are a fraud… Some, like me, don’t like to show it on the outside…. But we are screaming on the inside."

I couldn't have said it any better myself. Thanks RT...I'm screaming with you Brother!!!

January 20, 2007


I've been published!!
I wrote an article last fall for a competition in 'Disc Golf World' magazine. I recently found out that my story won for the 'travel' category! For regular readers, some of this article may seem familiar, as it draws from my trip overseas last summer.

Here's the link, I have added it to the right as well.


We are deep in the throws of winter, a snow storm that is expected to bring us 3-6" by morning is well under way.

Mary and I had a date night last night. We had a lovely dinner at Bravo, a local Italian eatery and then went to see the new Will Smith movie. 'The Pursuit of Happyness". It was really good,
moving, but not real uplifting. I thought the ending was rushed.....

I've been watching "The Band of Brothers" the last few weekends. If you are not familiar with the series it was a ten part HBO series that originally aired back in 2001. It tells the true story of Easy Company, part of the 101st Airborne. The series follows them from boot camp, to D-Day and across Holland, the Battle of the Bulge and into Austria as WWII concludes. If you've never seen it, you must. I had forgotten how the story and the characters just suck you in and break your heart.

For me, the most emotional part was in episode nine. After crossing Europe with these guys, watching as theu get injured, watching them die, watching them break, I felt sucker punched when they come across a concentration camp.

While I remember seeing films in grade school and watching Schindler's List, etc. and being moved, this morning for some reason I was brought to tears? Watch it some time; let me know if it affects you similarly.

January 17, 2007

Left in the hands of bureaucrats.....

The FDA is going to "Fast Track" Provenge....

My fingers are crossed but it looks like we might not have an answer until May.

I'm just hoping I won't need Provenge for a long, long time!
On another note; I received another reminder the other day of just how fortunate I am. I know a women who is battling cancer, as is her husband and now so is her mother. Remarkably she is so stoic, strong, together. It is her strong belief in God that gets her through day to day.

I can't imagine? Couple this burden with two more....
It's cold here in KC, overnight lows near zero. It is supposed to reach a balmy 38 by tomorrow.....just over eight weeks until Spring! Green grass, tulips and hyacinth....I can't wait.

January 09, 2007

Something more important than the Hall of Fame

Every month we go through the same thing, blood tests, meet with doctors, infusions, etc. What I haven't been sharing a lot of is the anticipation, worry, etc. Between the time the lab sticks my arm and draws a sample of blood to the moment the words that contain the PSA number actually cross the nurses lips, can be an eternity of worry, doubts and prayers. This can range from twenty four to forty eight hours. One to two days of hell!

I would bet I said one hundred "Hail Mary's" since the weekend. If you don't believe in the power of prayer, I can't explain it to you. I sometimes (but rarely) ask for a cure. Mostly, I ask for good test results, and time, more precious time. We know that chemo will come, but I pray each month that it's time has not yet come. Not to be repetitive, but I'm not scared of the process or procedure, BRING IT ON! What scares me is that starting chemo takes me one step closer to ___?

Now that I've drawn you in, here are the results from yesterday [drum roll.....]: 18.90 !!!!
Here is a re-cap of the last twelve months:

Date PSA
1/8/07 18.90
12/11/06 24.86
11/13/06 43.61
10/16/06 51.48 (Started Ketoconazole and Hydrocortisone, 10/01)
9/11/06 83.97 (started Zometa)
8/23/06 41.77
8/18/06 54.66
5/19/06 11.37 (stopped Casodex)
4/3/06 4.25
3/5/06 1.45
1/27/06 0.44
12/28/05 1.85

They're alive!

Timing is everything in life and in blogging!

In my last post I rhetorically asked "What ever happened to R.E.M.?"
Then yesterday, what do you know, they get elected into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame!!


Yesterday I had my monthly check-up, blood draw and 4mg infusion of Zometa (treatment #5). Nothing to report right now, the PSA results won't be back until Wednesday. I am still feeling great, except for this mild discomfort in my neck and upper back. It didn't start until I returned to work and it is not persistent (I haven't even reached for the Advil!). I think it is related to the concrete floors at work. For now we are just keeping tabs on it.

Winter apparently is going to visit us again this weekend, they are predicting twenty degree temperatures and ice! Not sure about the rest of the country, but in Kansas City the weather people get way to excited about this stuff!!

I myself, am already looking forward to Spring!

January 05, 2007


Over the holidays I rediscovered an old friend. It must have been ten years or more since we were together on a regular basis. We were close. I speak of the band R.E.M. What ever happened to them? I'm sure they are still out there. I still like their older stuff from the late 80's.

To the best of my recollection, I owned the album 'Document' three times. Once on a tape I wore out, and twice on CD. There it was, along with the album 'Monster', hidden away in our infrequently used sixty CD changer. I ripped both to our PC and transferred to my iPod. At this point I think I've listened to it three times through.

Daysleeper, Losing My Religion, Can't Get There From Here...and on, and on.

I think it's the ability of this music in particular to take me back to a time in life. A time with less responsibility, pressure, worries, cancer. Music can be a temporary escape from reality....

And so I conclude blog entry number two hundred with these thoughts; What lies ahead? What will happen to me? How long will the good news continue? When will things change? How hard will the battle be?

I hope most of these questions remain unanswered for a long, long time.

January 04, 2007


With the next installment of my blog, I will reach two hundred entries. This doesn't sound like much, but two hundred entries in twenty three months, this equates to about ten per month or one every three days. Wow, I never thought I'd have so much to say about any subject!

It's been a long road but the road that lies ahead is sure to be both longer and at times bumpier! Two years ago Mary and I were clueless and petrified. Now, well I'm not sure how to describe it? Content? At peace? Accepting? I'm not sure? As I've said before, it is what it is. We just go day to day, not too much worrying, not too much thinking far ahead.

My next meeting with the doctor, PSA test and Zometa treatment is Monday. Time is flying by!Perhaps it was the holidays, but it seems like it was just November! I still feel great, no changes in my health. We are praying for another drop in my PSA number.

January 01, 2007

Two Thousand and Seven

Just a quick note to kick off the new year.

I wish you all a healthy, happy new year~!