Deserts, Kathleen, and the Aneyoshi tablet

You’ll most likely drown in the desert

Pac hit me up the other day:

Him: I’m looking to buy a product that has polyurethane as a material, but it’s got a P65 warning on it. how much should I be worried about this product?
Me: Hard to say; lots of people think that Prop65 goes overboard but the rise of cancer throughout the nation means that something is definitely not normal. For me, I tend to err on the side of safety whenever I can.

Pac’s an athlete. He boxes, has a purple belt in BJJ, a black belt in judo, and was a high school wrestler.

I know a lotta athletes – obviously Chad is one, as is Mouse. Alison was one too.

None of them, however, is or was in as good a shape as Kathleen Heddle, who was an Olympic swimmer. She died recently, of cancer.

When I tell people that Alison died of cancer, I wonder what pops into their heads. Someone with a poor diet that was probably overweight and had bad habits, maybe?

That wasn’t her at all. She was absolutely gorgeous with a resting heart rate of 55 and a sleeping heart rate of 35. You read that right: 35.

Whenever we stayed at the ER, I could never get sleep because her alarm would go off at 35 and I would spring awake to press the silence button to give her an other 15 minutes of rest.

I pressed that fucking button at least 20 times a night, every goddamn night.

But I digress.

She used to run from my apartment to the George Washington Bridge more than once – ten miles roundtrip. She ate like an athlete too.

Yet she and Kathleen Heddle died of cancer. It’s madness. Alison was barely 35 when she was diagnosed; Kathleen died at 55.

If you think you can’t cancer, dude, Alison and Kathleen were the last people on the planet you would think would get cancer.

If they could get it and die, you absolutely can. So could I.

People think I’m peculiar because of how I live my life and what I eat. When Chad came by for his birthday, I made him a chocolate cupcake with almond flour.

You see, experience makes us act one way over another. So does the acceptance of information. As does willful ignorance.

When I read about Kathleen dying, I immediately thought of the Aneyoshi tablets. See, they’re these stones, hundreds of years old, that dot Japan’s coastlines. They simply say, “Remember the calamity of the great tsunamis. Do not build any homes below this point.”

Because if you built a house below the stone markers, you would die when the next tsunami hit.

Yet people did just that, despite the warnings that these ancestors laid out for them.

Alison is a warning to you. Kathleen is a warning to you.

This whole blog since December 2015 is a warning to you. If you think you can’t get cancer, think again, because what you think you know about yourself and the world is probably bullshit.

Like the desert. You see all the films and television shows about people dying from heat and thirst; it’s logical yeah?

Of course people die of heat in the desert, Logan.

Are you ready for some crazy? Most people die in the desert by drowning. Legit.

That’s because, people assume the danger is dying of thirst so they prepare for that. They don’t – at all – prepare for the possibility of flash floods, which kill more people in the desert than the heat.

It’s just like the lawyer that told me I was stupid to buy International Paper during the dot-com boom.

The stupider people are, the more sure they are of themselves. But you don’t know what you don’t know, until you know that you don’t know it.

Me? I’m smart enough to know that I don’t understand shit. All I know that I have to do everything I can to try to keep my family safe. Somehow.

Boy: I want candy.
Me: Here’s an oatmeal cookie I baked instead.
Him: OK! (eats it) Yummy!
Me: Good. (sighing) Good.

Location: Riverrun, pushing my son on a swing, wishing everything was different
Mood: pensive
Music: I don’t think you know how I feel (Spotify)
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