Monty Python on the YouTubes!
Monday December 01st 2008, 3:07 pm
Filed under: Attack Of The Internet!

Awesome!

–Reid.



New Photos
Monday December 01st 2008, 2:00 am
Filed under: Friends, Me, Myself, and Reid

Today I put up some new old and some new new photos in my Facebook photo albums. There’s stuff as far back as when I was first diagnosed, all the way through today.

There are some great pictures. I left a few out from the hospital that are a little less inspiring (or downright gross), but what’s up is a good sampling for now. I can always add more later.

The new albums are called “The Hospital” and “Recovering At Home”. Check them out here if you have a Facebook account. If you don’t have a Facebook account, put away your abacus and ask one of your kids to show the pictures to you.

To those of you who are all hip to The Facebook, why aren’t we friends (on the Internet) yet? Friend me!

–Reid.



Mmm-Wow: An Act Of Unnecessary Lunch Kindness
Sunday November 30th 2008, 4:39 pm
Filed under: Friends

Amy, Jason, and I just ate lunch at Noodles & Company, where the food was just as tasty as always. The people are always nice and friendly and the restaurants always well maintained.

Today, for no apparent reason other than to be nice, the manager paid for our lunch. It didn’t take extra time, and as far as we know, there was nothing wrong with it!

Stranger than this act of kindness was the long time we spent trying to justify to ourselves why he would do this–maybe he knew us? Nope, he was just being generous. How shocking and unusual! And nice!

We are so unused to random acts of niceness that when they happen, we don’t know how to react!

–Reid.



The Fear of God in my Belly
Wednesday November 26th 2008, 4:45 pm
Filed under: Leukemia

During my first month of chemo, I will bet I searched the Internet more regularly for information about constipation than Leukemia. From an outside perspective, the former may not seem like all that big a deal, but I’ll tell you, it’s a lot easier to focus on survival when you are not having to worry about intestinal equilibrium constantly. More, but not too much more, about this in a minute.

First, a lesson about panicking.

Yesterday, I panicked. I was convinced the world was witnessing the second coming of hemorrhagic pancreatitis, that foul beast that nearly digested me alive like so many tiny enzymes and bacteria. My stomach felt asymmetrically painful on the left side… when the body does something asymmetrically, doesn’t that mean something is wrong? It hadn’t been bothering me when I went to clinic on Monday, so we didn’t test my amylase and lipase! Also, my oncologist had… mentioned… something? about PEGasperiginaise. Ohgawd! Pancreatitis!

It wasn’t pancreatitis. I was, in fact, FOS. What is FOS? I will give you a hint: I was full of “it,” but was given several liters of GoLightly, which is the commercial misnomer of a very potent (very potent) pre-colonoscopy drink. This happened to me before, and I’ve read on many forums that this happens to lots of chemo patients: stuff gets backed up, and it’s hard to get it going again, especially while on high doses of vincristine.

I think the lesson here is ultimately about panicking; it’s bad and should be avoided. Or maybe it’s about the importance of pooping; it’s good and should be done regularly.

–Reid.



Oh, Stupid, Steroid-Induced Diabetes, You Had Me At “Stupid, Steroid-Induced”.
Sunday November 23rd 2008, 11:54 pm
Filed under: Leukemia

I knew that my sickness over the past week, only intensifying by the day, felt frightfully familiar. I thought back to when I had first gone through DI1 over the summer, and although getting through the steroids had been a difficult time, my sugars had stayed within a predetermined acceptable range. For this second Delayed Intensification, phase 1 (I think that’s what we’re calling it), I wasn’t so lucky. Unable to sleep last night, from a combination of constant peeing, achenes, and yes, even fatigue, I still resisted taking my blood sugars this morning. I admit it probably had more to do with not wanting to give myself–or ask my parents to give me–insulin shots than it did with good judgment.

At any rate, my blood sugar was very high even after fasting all last night, and even higher this evening. 300-400 range. Since we hadn’t come up with a comprehensive plan beforehand (as the last DI1 did not seem to have this problem), the doctors on call felt uncomfortable setting me up to “crater” overnight–a situation in which I take a lot of insulin, but then (since I’m sleeping), I don’t eat and I go into shock. I’m good with not doing that too.

Becca, who is home for Thanksgiving Break–will be taking me to clinic tomorrow as both the second week of normal DI1 treatment and to be shown off to my friends. We’ll figure out this stupid steroid stuff while we’re at it. It’s not enough that they’ve basically made me want to have no social interaction all week, feeling grumpier and more remote than usual. It’s not that they will, as I go off of them over the next few days (only to go right back on them a few days later), give me intense bone pain. Ooooh ho, no. They have to give me this stupid diabetes with all the fun that entails too.

BUT, Amy’s coming in this week and I can’t wait to see her.

AND ALSO, I will get to spend time with Roo and Boo over the next few days.

AND I CAN’T FORGET, that it is Thanksgiving and I do have an extra special lot to be thankful for this year.

FINALLY, I have an end in sight, and I can get through all of this little stuff knowing that end is in sight. I’ll do my best not to sweat the small stuff tonight, though, because that would really only raise my need to take in more fluids.

–Reid.

—————-
Now playing: Andrew Bird – Heretics
via FoxyTunes



“Baseball Revenge”: A Look At The Evolution Of My Comedy Videos (if there has been such a thing)
Wednesday November 19th 2008, 10:46 pm
Filed under: Friends, Who Knows?

Since Better Than The Machine posted a video about Karma earlier this week, it seemed an opportune time to post one of the first sketch comedy videos I ever wrote (and co-produced with my friend Jason Shwartz), back in the summer before college since it just so happens to deal with karma, too. It’s a parody of those old “Caring: Pass It On” videos that used to play before movies.

Jason’s the base runner, I’m the umpire, our friend Matt Sullivan is the catcher, and Jason’s kid neighbor Ari played Jason’s innocent-looking son. I think Ari’s mom probably still wonders what we were filming her son doing that day.

It was filmed and edited digitally, but the technology to record DVDs had yet to be harnessed by anyone but the Japanese back in those days, so it made it onto a VHS tape which I just transferred it from to Windows, then to OS X, then… to YouTube. So forgive how it looks, beyond the fact that it’s one of my first comedy videos!

–Reid.



New Star Trek trailer….
Wednesday November 19th 2008, 3:40 pm
Filed under: Sodapopcornculture

Oaughshit…!!

–Reid.

—————-
Now playing: The Submarines – You, Me and the Bourgeoisie
via FoxyTunes



The Simpsons got good again.
Monday November 17th 2008, 10:32 pm
Filed under: Sodapopcornculture

Matt and Carlos were right (was there ever a question?): The Simpsons really did get good again. Over the past few days, I’ve been been watching repeats from last season (season 523? 732?) after ignoring the show for years. Complaints I’ve had seemed to be addressed: there’s more focus on the main characters doing sometimes crazy things, but not always crazy; characters are back to being the way they were as a family. No random popular celebrities playing themselves for no reason like during the Mike Reiss years. No Stupidification of Homer. Feelings with heart. Very exciting.


Between this and new Futurama moviesodes, Matt Groening has won back my trust… and is once again one of my heros.

That being said, you listen to me, Groening: I’m still not giving Snowball 3 back until you lift the restraining order!!

-Reid.



Karma!
Monday November 17th 2008, 12:09 pm
Filed under: Better Than The Machine

Presenting the first of a slew of new videos from Better Than The Machine: Karma!

Directed by Ballard C. Boyd and featuring our friend Katla. Hurray!

–Reid.



Strange Sleep Before Somnolence Syndrome and Happy Thoughts About The Machine & Ballard
Saturday November 15th 2008, 7:00 am
Filed under: Better Than The Machine, Leukemia

I’ve been following bizarre sleep patterns. Some nights, I can’t hold my eyes open past 10 pm, while on other nights I can’t fall asleep before 3 or 4 in the morning, then I’ll wake up at 6:30 am. Or maybe if I’ve gone to bed at 10 the night before, I’ll sleep until noon, perhaps having been put in some sort of carbon stasis. None of this seems to be tied to anything. I can have a perfectly active day with no sleep, or I can be a lump on the couch and feel overwhelmingly tired and ready for bed at 8 pm.

I sure can’t wait for the Somnolence Syndrome from radiation where I might sleep for 23 hours a day. That’s just what I need. I’m going to need some sweet prince to come wake me up. (Matt Gallo?)

Anyway, aside from my bellyaching (which I’ll admit is designed to hopefully help me fall back asleep… aaaanytime now), I wanted to say how excited I am for the upcoming handful/armful of BTTM sketches directed and edited by my close-personal-friend-even-though-we’ve-only-met-a-handful/armful of times Ballard C. Boyd. Ballard knows what he’s doing and adds a level of professionalism that we haven’t had before. Along with Paul’s ever-growing extremely impressive animating skills with After Effects, we kind of look like we know what we’re doing now.

You know, contrary to when we told people we were intentionally going for a sort of “rough around the edges” thing.

I’m very excited. I better refine my… er… whatever unique skills I bring to the table.

–Reid.