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The Cancer Engine



 
 
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  #1  
Old July 12th 08, 03:52 AM posted to rec.aviation.homebuilt
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Posts: 472
Default The Cancer Engine

Cancer is Bad Stuff. Cancer does not deserve a Good Fight nor going
down with the ship whilst keeping our Spirits Up. Yet I've been urged
to do all those things as if Cancer is an honorable opponent. It
isn't. And that means it does not deserve being treated fairly. If
the Cancer Man was looking for an easy mark he's already lost this
war. Pointing out this fact may have cost me a couple of friends --
good ones -- and I think that justifies a word of explanation.

First off, things tend to happen fast when cancer comes to play. I
was diagnosed on my birthday, the 20th of June, when I turned 39 for
the thirtieth time. (Hey! I only write this stuff. I've no idea
where it comes from to begin with.) Today, 11 July, I drove myself
very cautiously to a cancer clinic where some very nice people did
some unspeakably painful things to my body. Not because I'm a
masochist but because I was able to convince them I was actually in
pretty good shape, able to get around by myself (a first) and even to
encouraging them to consider a more aggressive plan of attack.

They've already got me doing steroids and take if from me, this is NOT
good stuff. But it is even WORSE stuff for the Cancer Man. I'm not a
physician -- hell, when it comes right down to it, I'm not even a very
good mechanic. And if that raises a few brows, if there is any SECRET
to being a good wrench it is in being CONSISTENT. An engine won't
fail because of something I did... although it might because of
something I DIDN'T. So I have developed the keenest possible interest
not in in WHAT the cancer crew is doing to me but in the details
describing how & when those things are done. Indeed, I've been
keeping case-notes so damn near perfect that when it and I've really
very little interest in the details of the procedure they are using.
But I do have the keenest possible interest in its results. So I've
been keeping case-notes so damn near perfect that even I can
understand them.

Will it help? In the long run, probably not. The cancer crew are
pros, seriously dedicated to the imposition of professional treatment
against what can best be described as an Infinitely Variable Mode of
Failure, a task far beyond the kant of any professional mechanic.
Think about it for five seconds and you'll realize you're seeing a
unique brand of professinalism that is as surprising as it is
encouraging.

My copious notes tell me the cancer crew was willing to tackle my case
a bit earlier. They did this because I've been Cheating. I am NOT
playing fair. I have convinced the cancer crew I'm more assit than
liability, able to handle a little pain, resolve mobility issues and
generally FACILITATE the most aggressive treatment they are willing to
prescribe. And that plays hell with Mr. Cancer's game-plan. I'm
fighting dirty. No level playing field here. Cancer Man doesn't know
it but he's picked on a junk-yard dog.

I think that pretty well does it for the Cancer Song. Come my next
birthday mebbe I'll give you an up-date... if anyone even bothers to
ask. But the odds are we will all be up to our arm-pits in various
projects and PAST history about a SUCCESSFUL project is really kinda
boring.

One thing the Big C has done is to make it painfully clear that I've
about five too many engines under conversion, plus all sorts of gee-
whiz stuff that's interesting as hell -- at least, to me -- but it
tends to clutter up the shop. Big C turned that around in a hurry.
My wife is a lovely girl; an artist, mother, lover and friend. She's
driven the Baja solo and damn few females can say the same. She's
also got enough hours in her log to know when to do a 180, which puts
her ahead of at least half the dentists in the nation :-)

But she ain't no mechanic.

Scheduling the medical appointments has proven surprising difficult
when you must factor in the logistics. Even a well-appointed suit of
software is hard-pressed to maintain the logical flow of schedules,
changes to medications, tests to be performed AFTER this but BEFORE
that and at a lab an hour away from THE OTHER.

Wanna guess what happens when you get down to that level of
scheduling? Your engines come creeping out from under the bench.
"Lookit that! You got ninety whole minutes on Friday! That should be
enough time to finish that second head! (No, not THAT second head,
the OTHER second head for engine #3.) See? Right there. Blank time
from 1430 to 1500."

So the engines are getting done. At a rate so slow I'm ashamed to
give it numbers. But progress IS being made, thanks to the Big C's
schedules. (But to laugh: An 11 pound head -- something so light you
never even considered the mass when moving it about on the bench --
has become equal to about forty pounds. And you definitely know
you're pushing mass when you have to rig a set of levers to safely
handle an assemblabge of crankshaft and flywheel :-) "What's
oneanyour engines weigh?" the Nice Man asks. "Um, about three hundred
pounds today; less when I'm feeling better." Now I think THAT's kinda
funny :-)

-R.S.Hoover



But it also
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  #2  
Old July 12th 08, 04:25 AM posted to rec.aviation.homebuilt
Morgans[_2_]
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Posts: 3,924
Default The Cancer Engine


wrote

Cancer is Bad Stuff. Cancer does not deserve a Good Fight nor going
down with the ship whilst keeping our Spirits Up. Yet I've been urged
to do all those things as if Cancer is an honorable opponent.


You, by facing this adversity, playing dirty with it, inspires me. If "Mr.
C" ever calls on me, I'll try to remember your philosophy.

Keep on helping the docs play dirty with the dirty C.

It sure can't hurt, and can certainly help. And keep on with the
distractions, too. (pleasurable, though some could call it work) Better
than sitting around thinking about the next appointment, I would think.

Perhaps your lovely wife could help you pick up your Crescent wrench, when
it gets too heavy! g

She might be grateful for the opportunity to help.

And thanks for keeping us informed. You are in my daily thoughts, and
positive energy is sent your way, at least daily.
--
Jim in NC


  #3  
Old July 12th 08, 11:59 AM posted to rec.aviation.homebuilt
Stealth Pilot[_2_]
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Posts: 846
Default The Cancer Engine

On Fri, 11 Jul 2008 19:52:49 -0700 (PDT), "
wrote:

Cancer is Bad Stuff. Cancer does not deserve a Good Fight nor going
down with the ship whilst keeping our Spirits Up. Yet I've been urged
to do all those things as if Cancer is an honorable opponent. It
isn't. And that means it does not deserve being treated fairly. If
the Cancer Man was looking for an easy mark he's already lost this
war. Pointing out this fact may have cost me a couple of friends --
good ones -- and I think that justifies a word of explanation.


keep up the fight mate.

now the reason that we tell you to stop feeling sorry for yourself and
get out there in the workshop, even if it is to collapse in that
comfortable chair I suggested is because of the way the human senses
work.

you may never have noticed this but when you listen for something the
amplifiers in your head turn up the sensitivity of your hearing.
when you are looking for something your sight gets keener. when you
feel for something your touch sense gets amplified.

so if you sit there thinking about the cancer it will get the sensory
volume turned up. it's a bugger but we cant control the volume.
it happens automatically when we are doing something.
the only way to have it work beneficially is to go and do something
interesting ....out in the workshop.

btw give your wife a tender pat on the bum as you go out :-)
cant have her thinking you've forgotten.

Stealth Pilot
  #4  
Old July 12th 08, 02:03 PM posted to rec.aviation.homebuilt
COLIN LAMB
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Posts: 94
Default The Cancer Engine

I was there - once upon a time, now 12 years ago.

I made the following observations:

1. Take advantage of it and use it as an excuse to avoid going to events
you never wanted to go to in the first place. LIfe is short, take advantage
of excuses.

2. Use it as an excuse to clean up your desk - that will give you a few
years after recovery of good work space.

3. Steroids makes everything taste like cardboard. There will be some
items that you will never want again, because they still taste like
cardboard.

4. Junk food, with lots of salt, generally tastes much better. I figured I
had been eating healthy all my life and it did not work, so I changed my
diet to junk food during chemotherapy. To hell with guilt. Milk shakes
were very good!

5. If you get rid of many of your toys, it will take many years to
accumulate others, and your wife will longingly talk of the good times as
when you had the big C and finally cleaned up your shop.

6. I adopted the attitude that death was an irrelevant event. All it does
is stop the aging process.

7. After recovery, you can decrease your odds of dying from cancer by
changing your lifestyle. I started flying helicopters. People wanted to
know wny and I told them it reduced my chances of dying from cancer. They
shook their head.

Been there, done that. Colin


 




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