Over the past week, I took part in one of those Facebook things where someone tags you and you have to post for seven days about what you’re grateful about, and each day tag someone else to participate. I rarely pay much attention to anything on Facebook except LOL cats and how many likes my posts get, but I decided to take on the grateful challenge because it seemed a lot less questionable than many others I’ve received.
I think the point of the grateful challenge is to make us stop and think about our lives, and how much we have to be thankful for. Either that or there is no actual point and it’s just a ploy to get us to keep us interested in Facebook, because they make around $10 per user per year from advertising in the US alone. But I can’t believe that. I mean look at Mark Zuckerberg’s honest, baby face:
Anyway, I digress. Over seven days, I had to write down three things for which I am grateful. You probably think that someone who has (to this point at least) survived cancer, would have a heart full of gratefulness and an unlimited number of meaningful things to share and make all my Facebook friends misty-eyed and full of admiration at my pluck, but it just isn’t so. Yes, I am grateful to be alive, and that was in fact the first thing I posted. But most days I get shitted off by something or someone and I wish I had more of something (free time, money, chocolate) than I do. I feel impatient and tired and annoyed at the world at some point pretty regularly. I feel sad about having cancer hanging over me. I forget to be grateful about the good stuff because the bad stuff sometimes seems so much bigger and louder and in my face. Cancer has not made me saintly; I have not risen above it all.
The only light-bulb moment I had during the whole awful process was the giant dome-shaped, circular one in the operating theatre just before they chopped my right breast off. Cancer is bullshit! I am happy to be alive and most definitely grateful that in the random lottery of life I was one of the ones for whom the treatment has so far worked. But there is plenty of stuff about which I am not happy, and that is most definitely no cause for gratefulness. In the spirit of this, I present you my list of the top 10 things that have recently given me the shits:
- People who say ‘so you’re cured?’. Firstly, in case you missed the fucking memo people, there is no cure for cancer. Secondly, we are casual acquaintances. What if I’m honest and answer no? How are you going to wrap up that awkward little conversation?
- Telstra. Two years ago they gave our home phone number and address to someone else, who is most likely actually not a real person. All the evidence points to this person not being real, but to this day if you look up his name on Telstra white pages, there he’ll be living in our house and using our telephone number. Oh and we haven’t been Telstra clients for almost six years, which just adds to the total fuckwittery of the whole situation.
- People in my workplace who say ‘that’s not in my job description’. Well, dealing with lazy-arsed pen pushers is not in my job description either, but here I am talking to you about what’s not in your job description.
- Random pains that have no explanation. Sudden stabbing pain to the abdomen that happens once for six minutes and then never returns, I’m talking to you! Thanks for introducing the idea of secondary liver cancer into my head, mentally going over that pretty much constantly for three weeks was fun.
- Christopher Pyne.
- And whilst I’m on a political tangent, Senator Eric Abetz. In case you missed it, this clueless arsehole (who incidentally speaks like Reverend Lovejoy from The Simpsons) said on national television: “I think the studies, and I think they date back from the 1950s, assert that there is a link between abortion and breast cancer.” And I think there’s a link between Liberal politicians and being dumb as dog shit, but I guess I don’t have any solid research from the 1950’s to back that up.
- Reality makeover shows where people say things like ‘I want to go back to being the man she married’. You are the man she married, just older and fatter.
- The fact that I paid the best part of $200 for some fancy shoes that are supposed to be ‘luxuriously comfortable’ but have given me blisters. If anyone who works at Zeira is reading this, I will accept multiple free pairs of shoes as compensation for my pain and suffering.
- My ridiculously dry skin. Thanks to a combination of the anti-cancer drugs I’m on and being a dried up old bag, my skin is so dry that it hurts, and even the most gentle, natural moisturisers just make it hurt more. I am considering covering myself in goose fat for the remainder of winter, but I don’t want the expectation that I’ll then swim the English Channel hanging over me.
- The word ‘amazeballs’. How is it pronounced? Is it ‘amaze – balls’? ‘Am-aze-eh-balls’? ‘Ama – zeballs’? Or ‘I’m a pretentious hipster twat’? In November last year amazeballs was added to the Dictionary of the Most Annoying Words in the English Language, where it was defined as “an exclamation inviting someone to hit you.”
So there it is, my shit list as at Wednesday, 20 August. Feel free to add your shit list as a comment, or even better, on the Boob in a Box Facebook page. I’d be ever so grateful.