The Absurd Epistolary Adventures of the Astonishing FartMan chronicles the amusing escapades
of the lovable, stinky, and obnoxious Cape & Tights Super Hero, and his maudlin Alter Ego, W____,
as they learn to cope with Stage IV colon cancer, each other, and their annoying fellow human beings.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Deep Fried Liver

From: The Astonishing FartMan
Sent: Wed, January 19, 2011 11:15:27 AM
Subject: Deep Fried Liver

Hey everybody,

As you might recollect, tomorrow (January 20) the
stretch limo will arrive to take us to L____ Hospital for the big 2011 Liver Fry-Off and Filleting Contest, featuring Yours Truly in a once-in-a-lifetime command performance, with Dr. G_______ J________, as the Master of Ceremonies, and a huge supporting cast, all wearing their traditional native costumes with matching masks.

Actually, I‘ve heard that these star-studded mega-events, just like the Oscars and the Emmys, are usually pretty boring, so I might try to sleep through it. (Somebody poke me if the camera catches me snoring, drooling, scratching, or worse!)

S______ or I will be in touch with an update as soon as we recover from the “
after-party” hangover, which could take a few days. Meanwhile, no news is good news.

(BTW: They finally nailed down what caused
my cancer. As everyone already suspected, it was indeed Sarah Palin’s fault. Okay, if not entirely her fault, then certainly she bears a major share of responsibility, because of all the inflammatory things she’s said about how cancer should be ”targeted for defeat,” . . . . or something like that.)

See You on The Other Side,
Your Astonishing FartMan

Monday, January 17, 2011

To The Kindest, Gentlest, Best, and Most Loving Father

From: W_____
Sent: Monday, January 17, 2011 10:16 AM
To: Dad
Cc: All My Sibs
Subject: Re: Enjoyed your visit


Thank you for your beautiful message. I’m so glad we got to spend some time together. I really enjoyed it, too.

You are the kindest, gentlest, best and most loving father a son could ever have. Never in my life has there ever been even one moment when I doubted the love I received from you and mom. The unending love from you and mom is a great blessing in my life, and makes everything easy
Dad, I’m so sorry to have to have told you my bad news. It was so hard for me to tell you because I knew how much it would hurt you and scare you because I know how much you love each of us kids. After I told you, I could see you were completely numb and in shock. It’s a lot for a father to absorb.

I’m sorry for waiting so long to tell you, but I knew that I had to see you in person to tell you. I couldn’t tell you over the phone, and this was the first chance I’ve had to travel across country. Since they gave me the diagnosis in August, things have been extremely busy—first the bowel surgery, then seeing doctors all the time to make a treatment plan, and then doing chemotherapy for 12 weeks, all of which very much limited my ability to get away from Houston for more than a day or two at a time.

Really, dad, the first thing you need to know is that I am not unhappy—I am happy. I’m still counting life’s blessing, of which I have had more than my share, and still enjoying life. That that’s what I intend to keep doing.

And I’m not afraid. Of course, I’m not looking forward to some of the things I’ll have to go through, but I can manage it. I’ve got a good wife, and a good family, and good doctors, too. They say an optimistic attitude can help, so I’m really counting on you and the rest of the family to STAY POSITIVE and not get down in the dumps, and not to let me get down in the dumps. We might have some tough times ahead, but we can manage it. We absolutely must do our best to make the best of things no matter what happens.

I’ve already completed one surgery and 12 weeks of chemo, and it really wasn’t all that bad, not nearly as bad as I had expected. And, as you can see, I’m rolling along just fine, so well that nobody would know I was sick just by looking at me.

So please have faith that no matter what happens, I will be okay. Nobody gets to live forever, at least not on this earth, and nobody knows when their time will come, so we have to try to be happy and make the best of the time we have. That’s what I intend to do, and I want you to help me do that. So let’s all keep counting our many blessings, and not get down in the dumps! I am happy still, and it will be easier for me to stay happy if you and everyone else will stay happy, too.

Life is good and precious, so let’s not waste it by being sad for no good reason! (But sometimes we have to remind people, “Hey, just because I’m crying it doesn’t mean I’m sad! Those are happy tears!)

Dad, you know I believe in God, although the other details beyond that are not within my power to understand. I do have faith that God will take good care of me and all of us, and that we will all be brought back together again with mom and all our other loved ones who finish this earthly life either before us or after us.

Now I’m the one who is rambling!

I know you are going to have to worry about me some, but please don’t worry too much, because that’s not what I want you to do. STAY POSITIVE NO MATTER WHAT!

I love you and am proud to be your son,