Sunday, September 23, 2007

You Need Money to Live

I'm not going to mention his name, cuz I respect the guy that much, but an acquaintance of mine from another course asked me last week if I could go through his group's thesis. My being a survivor, and having written about it before, made me, in their eyes, a good guy to ask if their the idea of creating a pamphlet for hopeless cancer patients would be effective. The answer is a sad no, and I say this somewhat disappointed in seeing brilliant minds put so much time and effort on something that was bound to be bullshit right from the start of its conceptualization.

The intended audience: breast cancer patients in their 20s and 30s from low income families--meaning no money for the drugs needed to get healed. But still, the theme of the group's thesis is that there is still something one can do. I say that this is true. You CAN do something--like wait to die. The very conception of this project was based on the concept of consuelo de bobo. Seriously, what good would a salad or drink concoction do--even if cancer preventing--if someone already has the disease? You can't diet your way out of the cancer.

This acquaintance of mine, again a man I have much respect for, also asked what the best way to console a cancer patient would entail. I was at a loss for words, not because of the question but rather because of this guy's need to box all patients into one personality type, so that a formula for counselling could be conveniently thought of. But of course each patient is different. Some need a fatherly figure, others need a priest, while those like me just need a good wake up call.

"You have cancer but you aren't cancer." This is one of the proposed attitudes the thesis says you should have if you're a patient with no money for treatment. Well, your supposed possession's going to kill you. That's the sad truth. Swallow the pill: you need money to live. It sucks. It's unfair. Why do you think this survivor feels so fucking uneasy about it all? And with all the complexities this issue brings forth, I can't help but feel a little angry about a silly little thesis, which despite noble intents, has no real value, no real worth.


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