One hundred and twenty-nine pounds doesn't give me much heft, but I thought I would throw some of that weight around in my appointment in Radiation and Oncology on Thursday.
I'm probably already pushing the buttons of some of the staff at Kaiser by asking them to babysit my stuffed frog overnight for the duration of my treatments.
On Thursday, I decided to go a step further by appointing myself as sound engineer for my daily treatments.
So far everything from flamenco to mushy love songs have been played at each of radiation therapy sessions I've had, and I've wondered whether the music is part of the broader strategy to clear my body of cancer, by torturing the toxic cells into submission.
Hearing "That's Amore" last week was particularly unsettling. Doesn't the Geneva Convention monitor this sort of thing? (By the way, a friend defended Dean Martin after I trashed him last week in this blog. OK, maybe it's time for me to finally forget that Hollywood Palace show from 1964 when the host treated the Rolling Stones shabbily when they performed.)
I thought that the music was being piped in from a remote location, but I realized that each treatment room had its own CD player.
So today, before leaving the office to head to Kaiser for my 5 o'clock appointment, I grabbed a random CD from my drawer and threw it in my backpack.
When I arrived at the treatment room, I held up the CD and pointed to the CD player. The radiation oncologist was all too happy to pop the disc into the player.
So on Thursday, instead of enduring radiation while "Don't Worry, Be Happy" or Barry Manilow played in the background, I got to hear Elvis Costello and the Attractions.
"Alison" got the session rolling, followed by "Watching the Detectives," "(I Don't Want to Go to) Chelsea," "Pump It Up" and "Radio, Radio." Just as "(What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love and Understanding?" was kicking in, the ThermaSplint mask was lifted from my face and the session was over.
I was so happy that I practically skipped to the parking garage, and as soon as I sat down, I sent a text message to a friend.
"Yay!" I reported. "I can bring my own CDs into radiation!"
My friend replied: "R U sure? Isn't that like putting foil in a microwave?"
I didn't understand what he meant at first. But once I got home I Googled "foil" and "microwave" and learned that it's really not such a good idea to put aluminum foil into a microwave oven.
Anyhow, I'm feeling much better about the 24 sessions of radiation remaining in my treatment plan, knowing that I'll be programming music selections for my entire residency in Radiation and Oncology.
For all I know, I may have rescued my ears from being assaulted by Celine Dion while my cancer cells are being cooked.
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