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

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Ripple Effects

Five years ago today I came out of my closet and published my first (rather long) blog post about life as a melanoma patient. Today’s is my 587th post. So what do I think I’ve accomplished with all of this verbiage and song?

I’ve ranted, I’ve whined, I haven’t ever come remotely close to going even slightly viral with a post, and I certainly haven’t succeeded in raising much money for melanoma research. But I’ve bared my soul and perhaps inspired or encouraged a few melahomies to do the same with their own blogs that have had a far wider reach and impact than mine. No one has sued me for defamation or copyright infringement. I may have succeeded in slightly raising melanoma “awareness” (a term I dislike intensely), although as near as I can tell none of my posts have been read by more than a handful of folks who don’t already live at The Hotel Melanoma. (Like, my wife asked me a while back whether I was still blogging.) But I’m pretty certain I’ve put a smile on the faces and a song in the hearts of some fellow Hotel residents, and that’s reason enough to keep on trying.

I suspect I’ll never know or see all of the ripple effects of stepping out of my room and blogging, but I do know one thing for sure. Writing Welcome to The Hotel Melanoma has drawn me into a warm, supportive and welcoming community of mole mates and meeting a whole bunch of really nice people. Thank you all for being here.

Just this once, I’ll leave a fine old song unmarred. The Grateful Dead’s “Ripple”…

If my words did glow
With the gold of sunshine
And my tunes were played
On the harp unstrung

Would you hear my voice
Come through the music?
Would you hold it near
As it were your own?

There is a road, no simple highway
Between the dawn and the dark of night
And if you go, no one may follow
That path is for your steps alone

Ripple in still water
When there is no pebble tossed
Nor wind to blow

It's a hand-me-down
The thoughts are broken
Perhaps they're better left unsung
I don't know, don't really care
Let there be songs to fill the air

Ripple in still water
When there is no pebble tossed
Nor wind to blow

You who choose to lead must follow
But if you fall, you fall alone
If you should stand then who's to guide you?
If I knew the way I would take you home


  1. You're speakin' my language. I have very much appreciated finding your blog and I enjoy it immensely. Keep up the posting - your wife may not read it (my kids have given up on mine too, and I sure haven't been five years yet!) LOL But I do read, and find comfort. And I like knowing I am not the only one in this place, that I can check out anytime I like, but can never leave. Best metaphor ever, I fully agree. Hang in there. Happy mole-iversary (cough cough) - more importantly: Happy Blogiversary!

  2. Wow, 587 posts! That's impressive! Now looking forward to #588. You are definitely on a roll so don't even think about stopping! I'm not sure I have even had that many thoughts in 5 years, never mind putting them in writing. :-)