söndag 17 mars 2013

Too young to die, to old to play Pokemon. You just can't win, can you?

Lately, I've been thinking a lot about death (Yes, it is going to be one of those posts. I truly am a bringer of joy to the internet), especially dying of cancer. Being the daughter of two doctors, I have always experienced the more gruesome side of medicine: when other children were told that babies are made when a unicorn blinks at a sunrise or whatever kids get to hear these days, I was told that I had been pushed through my poor mother's vagina, and if I wasn't careful, I would have to push the equivalent of a watermelon out of my vagina one day. No unicorns. Just vaginas. While other kids lived oblivious of things like incest, my parents told me that marrying my cousin would lead to me giving birth to dragons. Which was really the worst thing you can tell a kid - I ran to my cousin and told him this story, and we decided it was the coolest thing ever and that we should totally go through with the marriage. Man, we could have been  like Targaryens. And, to get to my point, while other kids were told that their grandfather passed away because he was tired, my dad showed me pictures of a cancer-ridden lung and yelled "IF YOU SMOKE YOU WILL ROT FROM THE INSIDE OUT". Needless to say, I am now and have always been frightened of cancer, beyond any other fears.

Now, when I have reached adulthood, I try to stay away from the obvious types of behavior that can elevate the risk of cancer: I try not to smoke too much, I try to restrict my bacon-intake to 5 days a week and I only sniff asbest at parties. The problem is, it seems to me like there is nothing you can't get cancer from nowadays: smoking, passive smoking, drinking, not drinking, not giving birth, eating meat, using makeup, eating sugar, not eating fibres, eating too much fibres, living in the city, not exercising, not drinking coffee, drinking too much coffee and so on.

Here is my list of things that probably also gives you cancer:

1. Hugging little children
2. Breathing on a regular basis
3. Staring for too long at a smoker
4. Enjoying life a little too much
5. Not helping old ladies cross the street
6. Laughing at jokes about WWII
7. Leaving the toilet seat up
8. Yelling at your TV
9. Under-tipping
10. Posting stupid lists about cancer in a blog which no one reads

My conclusion is that if I try to avoid all the things that might give me cancer, I would have to go Amish. I mean, is a life without whisky, bacon, getting restraining orders against my personal trainer and wearing lipstick to bed really worth living? I have been too cautious for too long (My bucket list consists of one paragraph: dying of old age. That's what.), and spending my entire life worrying that something might happen to me will do me nothing but harm - so from now on, I'll ignore all the cancer warnings and just go with what feels natural. If natural means eating an entire cake in one sitting, using snuff and drinking whisky in front of the TV and being a little bit too curious about trying opium (19th century drug addiction is just too retro to avoid).

Yes, this feels like a wise choice. What could possibly go wrong?