15 on the Fives no. 1

A note to my readers: 15 on the Fives is posted twice-daily at 5:16 a.m. and 5:16 p.m. These entries are what I call “vomit” or discovery drafts, where I write uninhibited for 15 minutes. There are no rules about topics, content, form, grammar, or spelling. The only rule is that I don’t stop writing. By following this one rule, I almost always discover something new in my writing, and more often than not, I find a seed or two for future pieces I feel I can take to publication. Give it a whirl; there’s nothing to lose (but 15 minutes, of course!).


The web that joins us all in this world, across counties, states, and continents as well as across days, years, and decades is so vast and deep that to even begin to say we understand it is just ridiculous. I was talking with Cindy, my sister, last night about this very thing. Well, actually, she was talking to me about it, telling me a story of how one of her oncologists handled a case similar to hers—actually it was nearly identical—where over 20 years ago, he too had lymphoma, and now he finds himself battling the same kind of cancer Cindy seems to be battling. Despite great efforts from the doctor to locate his files to be able to discuss more competently the similarities, she couldn’t find a single file. She was a little discouraged, for here was a patient that Cindy could relate to, even in a distant way, for they both shared this experience of being cancer free for so long, only to have this happen.

Well, as many such things turn out, who do you think was in the waiting room when Cindy wrapped up her meeting with the doctor? Exactly. The same person the doctor was talking about to Cindy not 15 minutes earlier. Cindy got the chance to hear firsthand what the treatment is going to be like. But more important: she got the chance to hear straight from the guy himself that it worked, and despite the pain of the chemo (she’ll be hospitalized for four days during each cycle of treatment b/c it is too rough on the system), it was all worth the great days that have followed.

Now, my sister is a naturally upbeat person, and so many people love her unconditionally because of this. She serves as an inspiration to so many and for so many different reasons. I hope I can steal the chance to get down to Florida (Tampa, specifically) and just be there for her during those hard treatment days. . . .
Who knows? Maybe it’s not too late to work something out to go down.

My first 15 on the fives didn’t save, and so I can’t even remember what I wrote about in that post. Oh well….it is vapor now, my friends. Pure, pure vapor.

Right now I’m listening to Miles Davis’ So What. LOVE IT. Actually, a student of mine, Chip, actually turned me on to Miles one day in class, when he started humming a few bars of it after I asked the class the very open-ended question: So What? What was the purpose of all of this, and did you take what you wanted so badly to be given to you? After a few students went the route of sharing what they had written in their Daybooks, Chip proudly took center stage (figuratively, of course) and just started humming Davis’ So What.

Beautiful, I thought. Simply beautiful.

I think maybe there’s something there in that, that one or two moments when Chip started humming a few bars, and nobody—I mean absolutely nobody, knew the notes to it. So, he finished his entry and we all moved on.

Maybe next year’s team will be much with all of this….
You think?