The "Hotel Melanoma" moniker is a metaphor for living with my particular brand of cancer. Except for those lucky few of us deemed "cured", all we cancer survivors are guests of one of the many, many branded hotels in the "Hotel Carcinoma" chain. We can check out any time we like, but we can never leave. Meanwhile, let's be livin' it up; and please support cancer education, prevention, and treatment research.

Tutu Brothers

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


We guests of The Hotel Melanoma share an involuntary, yet extraordinary kinship born of shared experiences, hopes and fears. Back in 2003 when things were quite crazy in my own fight with the beast, I was blessed with the love and support of my spouse, family and friends. But I didn’t know a single fellow melanoma fighter with whom I could “vent” or share some dark humor, knowing they’d “get” what I was talking or laughing about because they were walking, or had walked, in my shoes. Consequently, I often felt quite alone in a crowd of well-meaning and supportive, but largely clueless loved ones. And that was entirely my own fault, because I’d made no effort at all to reach out and find a support network of other guests of this Hotel. But, oh my, how things have changed since I came out of my room and met some of the other guests at this place.

With thanks and gratitude to all of my new pale friends and ‘molemates’, here’s a Thanksgiving version of Pink Floyd’s “Us And Them”…

Us, not them
And after all we're more than ordinary friends
Me, and you
God only knows it's not what we would choose to do
Forward we strive for more years
No more tanning hides
In the cool shade we sat, with sunscreen by the vat
Spread from side to side

Black’s our hue
And we know pale’s so rich and pink’s not new
Ups, some downs
But in the end it's only round and round and round
Haven't you heard it's our battle for cures
We Black C warriors cried
Listen son, said those fools in the sun
There's fun for you outside

Down, not out
It can be helped but there's a lot of this about
With, some clout
And who'll deny it's what our fighting's all about
Out of the way, it's a scanning day
I've got things on my mind
For lack of our slice of research’s price
This cancer’s thrived


  1. I am glad you found us! Hotel Melanoma would be much more boring without you.

  2. I also did not know single person with melanoma until I found your blog, MRF and other blogs. I enjoy your posts.