Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Wow. It's Been a While.

It's been forever since I've updated the old blog. Sorry about that.

The truth is, there's been not much going on.

I've been going to my doctor for my appointments, taking my Tamoxifen and dealing with the hot flashes it causes, and struggling with my weight. Apparently - hormone therapy makes it hard to lose weight. That and my incipient laziness.

So I've started training for a duathlon the weekend of 6/6... and will try to do at least one 5k in May (probably the Emerald Crossings Trail Run).

The thing is, the last month has been a crazy month.

So - the big news is that, apparently, despite a high tolerance for Irish Whiskey and an undying love for the Cleveland Browns -- the old Crowley genetics also have a predisposition towards cancer.

My dad was diagnosed a couple weeks ago with prostate cancer.

He'll be having surgery in a couple weeks to remove his prostate, and you can imagine my distress when I went to visit MY oncologist last week. I believe what I told her was that my dad had been diagnosed with prostate cancer and that, I suspected that meant things weren't going to end well with me.

She agreed -- and told me to contact my GP for a prostate check.

Shit.

In other news not related to getting a finger shoved up my ass...

I have been working closely with Komen of Northeast Ohio. In fact, I helped them out by writing their nominations to the national affiliate for things like affiliate of the year and volunteer of the year. As a testament to my writing skill -- or at least my willingness to actually write the darned things - Komen NEO was named Affiliate of the Year for all of Komen nationally.

Kind of cool.

I've also been working on their Education and Communications Committees. What I thought was going to be learning to speak 'Komen-ese' and helping out with some public speaking, turned out to be something completely different. I'm onthe actual committees and helping define policy and Komen NEO's plans for the year.

I'm in a bunch of meetings with people like the Executive Vice President of Women's Health from the Cleveland Clinic and the president of University Hospitals.

You can imagine my discomfort when I showed up in jeans, a Night of The Living Dead t-shirt under a long sleeve black button up, and my ubiquitous Maxpedition Kodiak bag slung over my shoulder.

But it's cool because I'm actually using some of my communication experience and actually making a difference in my small part of the world.

It's gratifying.

On other fronts - I got a call last week from Tova with Komen and they asked if I'd help them out on Mother's Day. She said she was asking because of my help with the nominations, but also to raise awareness of male breast cancer. She want me to come down to the Mother's Day Indians game at Progressive Field because it's their Breast Cancer awareness celebration with the Tribe. To that end -- they've asked me to throw out the first pitch. Let me say that again they want me to throw out the first pitch!!!

So - set your Tivo's! On May 9th - I'll be throwing the opening pitch at Progressive Field and trying to raise awareness for male breast cancer. I'll probably be wearing a pink shirt -- and will try valiantly to NOT throw the ball like a girl.

Seriously. That's a concern. I noticed this winter that I can't throw like I used to because of my mastectomy. I noticed it when my son and I were trying to peg my daughter with snow balls. So -- I'll have to ask the boy to play catch a few times over the next month. Let's hope I can get it over the plate. (Please please please let me get it over the plate and not embarass the hell out of myself!)

Finally - I just received a Facebook invite and an invitation to the Art Show in Baltimore I was asked to pose for. If you'll remember, I was contacted by a graduate student named Michelle Renay Wilson from the University of Maryland for a photoshoot. Her final project is a photographic exploration of male breast cancer. She came into town in December and took several shots of me. The show is in Baltimore on 4/28 - 5/17. Afterwards, the photos will be posted on line and I'll make sure I update with a link.

In the meantime, I've added a copy of the invitation. On the off chance that I have any Baltimore area readers -- check it out (I do know I have a cousin living there). You'd be supporting the arts and awareness of male breast cancer.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

WELW 1330AM Radio Interview

Met up with my friend Sophie Sureau from Kmen for the Cure for a radio interview yesterday morning.

Here's a podcast of the show. We're on the air at about the 14:50 point.

Important point -- there's a news piece earlier in the podcast about Komen for the Cure's current fundraising goals. It looks like they're actually a little short on their fundraising goals for the year... especially after the Race for the Cure.

There's a few different reasons for it... but the main is that people are showing up, but not paying to participate. It's awesome that people are excited and want to show up and show support, but people also need to realize that The Race for the Cure is the single biggest means Northeastern Ohio's Komen for the Cure has to raise money.

So, the point here is... yes, the Race for the Cure is a great celebratory event. It's great for raising awareness. It's even wonderful that you want to come down and walk or run. But you need to pay for it. 75% of the money raised needs to go to 22 local counties supported by the Northeastern Ohio affiliate of Komen for the Cure and that money goes to help women (and some men) get breast cancer detecting tests. Early detection is the key... but Komen can't help if they don't have the money.

Seriously. Don't be a douche. Celebrate, but spend the money!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Even Rock Stars Get Moob Cancer

Saw this article on CNN today.

It's actually a rehashing of a lot of the things I've been saying... but the more celebrity or recognizable male victims we get to speak out about their fight with male breast cancer, the more people will know that dudes get it as well.

And for the record, when I was growing up, every kid loved KISS. And Peter Kriss was my favorite!

For my part, I met with Sophie Sureau -- the executive director of Susan G Komen here in Northern Ohio. I actually knew her before the moob cancer through my sister, which is kind of funny in a 'it's a small world' sort of way.

Anyway, we had coffee and discussed my helping spread the word about male breast cancer. She was awesome and encouraging and convinced me to volunteer with Susan G Komen and help out where I can.

It's cool because I'll get the opportunity to talk to other men, and women as well, and give - I hope - a different perspective on breast cancer. In fact, she's invited me to join her for an on-air radio interview on WCLW 1330 am next Wednesday morning. She was there this week talking about breast cancer in general and the host asked her to come back and speak about men and breast cancer as well. The interview's at 7:10am.

If you're in the car and on your way in to work... tune in. I'll try to not sound like a total douchenozzle.

I promise!

In other news... I sold my latest novel this week. The publisher's out of Texas and is really, really small... but it's a real publisher and I'm super excited. Proofs will be done around the beginning of December and I think it'll make a great end to a not so great year.

All right, actually, it was a pretty crappy year. But at least it's almost over.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Advocating

So - the Scene article has come and gone. My family managed to snag several copies and I've actually been getting all kinds of emails and calls as a result of the article. I'd say it was a wild success... and raised awareness some. Or at least I hope it did, because it would kill me to learn that I had a nude picture of my fat ass on a major publication for nothing. Seriously.

A quick update on my current health situation...

I started physical therapy two weeks ago. It's going all right and, once again, they're not sure what to do with me. Physically, I'm not what they're used to dealing with. I'm only doing the physical therapy because my surgeon insisted... but I think that the therapists are a bit flabbergasted when I tell them that I want to get back to bench pressing 100% of my body weight. They're used to dealing with women, many of them older, who have trouble lifting more than 20 or 30 pounds. Add to that the fact that I've kept up on my cardio and ran a 5K a few weeks, and they're truly at a loss. Today, one of them told me that I was, for all intents and purposes, an athlete and they needed to approach it from that point.

Oh, and they're really concerned about lymphodema. So much so, that they've got me doing stupid stretches to 'improve my plymphatic flow.' In other words, I'm doing stupid stretches that have little value other than to waste my time. (And, as always, the flier they gave me had pictures of women doing the stretches because... wait for it... men don't usually have this problem. Sigh).

So I went today and got fitted for a lymphodema sleeve. It's an elastic support sleeve that's supposed to prevent lymphdema and I now have to wear it whenever I work out, do anythingespecially strenuous, or fly.

Sadly, they didn't have any cool ones. They had colors (Flesh-colored, pink, pastel blue, and brown)as well as black. I asked if they had any that looked like, I don't know, full sleeve tattoos or something. They laughed. I went with a black one and will just suffer under the fact that, when I work out, I'll look like I just came from the Hot Topic. Imprinted lymphodema sleeves that look like you have a full sleeve tattoo is a wide open area for development, by the way. If you're looking to make a million dollars, run with it. I don't time myself...

I was also told by my thearpist to start working on my core. What they really mean is ab work. According to the therapist, my core strenght is seriously lacking. I didn't arguw with her because I know that my abs suck. I hate ab work with a passion and have always neglected it. Unfortunately, I mentioned it to Michelle, and now it looks like I'm doing crunches every night from now on. Damn it.

So, I'm also busting my ass to lose weight because my 20 year reunion's coming up at the end of Neovember. The working out will, I hope, work.

Fingers crossed...

One final note... I received an email from Cathy Reid at outoftheshadowofpink.com. See the full transcript of her email below. Please take the time to head over to her site and sign up to make the thirs week of October National Male Breast Cancer week.

Thanks!


Hi! I’ve been working to have the 3rd week in October designated as Male
Breast Cancer Week in memory of Joe. The information below is a rough draft
of our proclamation. It would be greatly appreciated if you would be
willing to sign this proclamation. If you are willing, just let me know and
I will add your name to the list. Please feel free to forward this to
anyone else that you believe would be interested in helping to establish
this vital awareness campaign.

Please send your response to creid@outoftheshadowofpink.com

Thanks so very much!

Sincerely,
Cathy Reid

Proclamation for the Third Week of October

MALE BREAST CANCER AWARENESS WEEK*

*Be It Resolved…*

*WHEREAS*, each year 450 men will die from male breast cancer and the
numbers are increasing. Men are typically diagnosed at a late stage and we
believe this is primarily due to a lack of awareness that men too can
develop the disease.

*WHEREAS*, it behooves each of us, men, women, parents, siblings,
educators, physicians and citizens to promote awareness of the disease and possibly save men’s lives.

*WHEREAS*, we must educate the world to the reality of this disease, and

*WHEREAS*, in remembrance of the many men who have lost their lives or are
fighting for their lives, due to a lack of awareness, *it is appropriate
that we designate the Third Week of October as Male Breast Cancer Awareness
Week.*
*********************************************************************

*2009 SUPPORTERS*

- Cathy Reid (Walkersville, MD), Executive Director, Out of the Shadow of Pink, www.outoftheshadowofpink..com - Wife of Joe Reid who died of Male Breast Cancer in 2009
- Monica Stevens (Walkersville, MD), Director, Out of the Shadow of Pink,
Daughter of Joe Reid, mstevens@outoftheshadowofpink.com
- Brandon Greening, (St Leonard, MD), Director, Brandon Greening Foundation
for Male Breast Cancer, www.breastcancerinmen.org - Male Breast Cancer
Survivor
- Connie Greening, (St Leonard, MD), wife of male breast cancer patient
- Jack Reid (Beallsville, MD), brother of male breast cancer victim
- James Reid (Laurel, MD), brother of male breast cancer victim
- Jack Reid Jr (Beallsville, MD)
- Jay Reid (Charlestown, WV) brother of male breast cancer victim
- Cynthia Reid (Bowie, MD), sister of male breast cancer victim
- Cheryl and David Mikulka (Crofton, MD), sister-in-law of male breast
cancer victim
- Michael Mikulka (Crofton, MD)
- Becca Williams (Crofton, MD)
- Debbie Radzilowski (Crofton, MD)
- Shawn Radzilowski (Crofton, MD)
- Brandon Radzilowski (Crofton, MD)
- Kristin and Brandon Bubar (Bath, ME)
- Denise and Gary Meese (Germantown, MD)
- Steven Call (Germantown, MD)
- Erin and Mike Colacurccio (Jacksonville, FL)
- Janice Beckham (Salisbury, MD)
- Christine Smith (Salisbury, MD)
- Kim Ortega (Salisbury, MD)
- Denise Payne (Oxen Hill, MD), breast cancer survivor
- Kevin Payne (Oxen Hill, MD)
- Kirstin Washington (Germantown, MD)
- Robert Stansbury (Wheaton, MD)
- Jen and Phil Nicholson (Germantown, MD)
- Jason Bradford (Germantown, MD)
- Pasquale Luciani (Bowie, MD)
- Jody Buyck, RN (Endicott, NY), breast cancer survivor
- Karen Luciani
- Ralph Luciani (Vestal, NY)
- Carol Addison, RN (Pinellas Park, MD)
- Becky Hildebrand (Lititz, PA)
- Stuart Bridges (CA)
- Nanette and Richard Levy (Las Vegas, NV)
- Sue Lewis (Hyattstown, MD)
- Heath and Nicole Hykas (Hagerstown, MD)

Advocating

So - the Scene article has come and gone. My family managed to snag several copies and I've actually been getting all kinds of emails and calls as a result of the article. I'd say it was a wild success... and raised awareness some. Or at least I hope it did, because it would kill me to learn that I had a nude picture of my fat ass on a major publication for nothing. Seriously.

A quick update on my current health situation...

I started physical therapy two weeks ago. It's going all right and, once again, they're not sure what to do with me. Physically, I'm not what they're used to dealing with. I'm only doing the physical therapy because my surgeon insisted... but I think that the therapists are a bit flabbergasted when I tell them that I want to get back to bench pressing 100% of my body weight. They're used to dealing with women, many of them older, who have trouble lifting more than 20 or 30 pounds. Add to that the fact that I've kept up on my cardio and ran a 5K a few weeks, and they're truly at a loss. Today, one of them told me that I was, for all intents and purposes, an athlete and they needed to approach it from that point.

Oh, and they're really concerned about lymphodema. So much so, that they've got me doing stupid stretches to 'improve my plymphatic flow.' In other words, I'm doing stupid stretches that have little value other than to waste my time. (And, as always, the flier they gave me had pictures of women doing the stretches because... wait for it... men don't usually have this problem. Sigh).

So I went today and got fitted for a lymphodema sleeve. It's an elastic support sleeve that's supposed to prevent lymphdema and I now have to wear it whenever I work out, do anythingespecially strenuous, or fly.

Sadly, they didn't have any cool ones. They had colors (Flesh-colored, pink, pastel blue, and brown)as well as black. I asked if they had any that looked like, I don't know, full sleeve tattoos or something. They laughed. I went with a black one and will just suffer under the fact that, when I work out, I'll look like I just came from the Hot Topic. Imprinted lymphodema sleeves that look like you have a full sleeve tattoo is a wide open area for development, by the way. If you're looking to make a million dollars, run with it. I don't time myself...

I was also told by my thearpist to start working on my core. What they really mean is ab work. According to the therapist, my core strenght is seriously lacking. I didn't arguw with her because I know that my abs suck. I hate ab work with a passion and have always neglected it. Unfortunately, I mentioned it to Michelle, and now it looks like I'm doing crunches every night from now on. Damn it.

So, I'm also busting my ass to lose weight because my 20 year reunion's coming up at the end of Neovember. The working out will, I hope, work.

Fingers crossed...

One final note... I received an email from Cathy Reid at outoftheshadowofpink.com. See the full transcript of her email below. Please take the time to head over to her site and sign up to make the thirs week of October National Male Breast Cancer week.

Thanks!


Hi! I’ve been working to have the 3rd week in October designated as Male
Breast Cancer Week in memory of Joe. The information below is a rough draft
of our proclamation. It would be greatly appreciated if you would be
willing to sign this proclamation. If you are willing, just let me know and
I will add your name to the list. Please feel free to forward this to
anyone else that you believe would be interested in helping to establish
this vital awareness campaign.

Please send your response to creid@outoftheshadowofpink.com

Thanks so very much!

Sincerely,
Cathy Reid

Proclamation for the Third Week of October

MALE BREAST CANCER AWARENESS WEEK*

*Be It Resolved…*

*WHEREAS*, each year 450 men will die from male breast cancer and the
numbers are increasing. Men are typically diagnosed at a late stage and we
believe this is primarily due to a lack of awareness that men too can
develop the disease.

*WHEREAS*, it behooves each of us, men, women, parents, siblings,
educators, physicians and citizens to promote awareness of the disease and possibly save men’s lives.

*WHEREAS*, we must educate the world to the reality of this disease, and

*WHEREAS*, in remembrance of the many men who have lost their lives or are
fighting for their lives, due to a lack of awareness, *it is appropriate
that we designate the Third Week of October as Male Breast Cancer Awareness
Week.*
*********************************************************************

*2009 SUPPORTERS*

- Cathy Reid (Walkersville, MD), Executive Director, Out of the Shadow of Pink, www.outoftheshadowofpink..com - Wife of Joe Reid who died of Male Breast Cancer in 2009
- Monica Stevens (Walkersville, MD), Director, Out of the Shadow of Pink,
Daughter of Joe Reid, mstevens@outoftheshadowofpink.com
- Brandon Greening, (St Leonard, MD), Director, Brandon Greening Foundation
for Male Breast Cancer, www.breastcancerinmen.org - Male Breast Cancer
Survivor
- Connie Greening, (St Leonard, MD), wife of male breast cancer patient
- Jack Reid (Beallsville, MD), brother of male breast cancer victim
- James Reid (Laurel, MD), brother of male breast cancer victim
- Jack Reid Jr (Beallsville, MD)
- Jay Reid (Charlestown, WV) brother of male breast cancer victim
- Cynthia Reid (Bowie, MD), sister of male breast cancer victim
- Cheryl and David Mikulka (Crofton, MD), sister-in-law of male breast
cancer victim
- Michael Mikulka (Crofton, MD)
- Becca Williams (Crofton, MD)
- Debbie Radzilowski (Crofton, MD)
- Shawn Radzilowski (Crofton, MD)
- Brandon Radzilowski (Crofton, MD)
- Kristin and Brandon Bubar (Bath, ME)
- Denise and Gary Meese (Germantown, MD)
- Steven Call (Germantown, MD)
- Erin and Mike Colacurccio (Jacksonville, FL)
- Janice Beckham (Salisbury, MD)
- Christine Smith (Salisbury, MD)
- Kim Ortega (Salisbury, MD)
- Denise Payne (Oxen Hill, MD), breast cancer survivor
- Kevin Payne (Oxen Hill, MD)
- Kirstin Washington (Germantown, MD)
- Robert Stansbury (Wheaton, MD)
- Jen and Phil Nicholson (Germantown, MD)
- Jason Bradford (Germantown, MD)
- Pasquale Luciani (Bowie, MD)
- Jody Buyck, RN (Endicott, NY), breast cancer survivor
- Karen Luciani
- Ralph Luciani (Vestal, NY)
- Carol Addison, RN (Pinellas Park, MD)
- Becky Hildebrand (Lititz, PA)
- Stuart Bridges (CA)
- Nanette and Richard Levy (Las Vegas, NV)
- Sue Lewis (Hyattstown, MD)
- Heath and Nicole Hykas (Hagerstown, MD)

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Man Up! Cleveland Scene Article

The article in the Cleveland Scene has been published. It went up this morning online and paper copies wtill be available Cleveland-wide tonight.

Check it out!!!

(And never mind the pictures of my blubber!!!)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Sneaky Video...

... of Mark Nolan.


Posted in deference to the longstanding internet meme... "PICS OR IT DIDN'T HAPPEN!"



video