Another rain-soaked week. Another day of procrastination with making that phone call to the court HR lady about the "final separation". They want to make sure I don't collect unemployment.
Thinking I should blog every day, the way Carolyn does. So what did I do today? I'm listening to Naomi's Breathe mix, boiling artichokes, roasting mushrooms, making dinner, baking apple-cranberry muffins. I read some cancer articles. I checked out some books at the library (a couple I'm thinking of sending to the uncle). Where I'll find the time to read, cook, start packing up the house, etc. is beyond me.
I think I've lost it. I've bought over a case of wine in the past week, ostensibly for my uncle in the Philippines, who's very into wine. I had great interest in wine until I got sick. Chemo drugs compromised my liver and alas, no more days of wine and roses. Being around an enthusiastic wine lover reminded me of the joys of wine, and now I think, to hell with it. I should drink a glass now and then, maybe every other day? This week I'll be "saving up" in order to drink a bottle with snacks on Sunday–the Oscars. Corny, I know. I'll probably have the worst hangover after three glasses.
I may have to start a wine closet at the next place. I'd like to drink some nice wine before I go. When I go, I'd like to leave a collection behind that someone will thank me for, every time they open a bottle. I enjoy that idea quite a bit. It calls to mind the time my friend and I raided her parents' wine cellar when she was lashing out at them for something I can't even recall. We drank three bottles of wine, each one over $75 in 1977. I bet they never even noticed, they had that many bottles. The fact I remember that says something (what, I'm not sure). And then there are the wine-soaked adventures with Jules…
I just saw a little piece of Oprah's show featuring the movie critic Roger Ebert. I didn't know he'd been battling throat cancer for four years and can no longer eat, drink, or speak. He communicates via his computer, utilizing voice conversion software. Apparently he's now cancer-free. Kudos to him and his wife for digging in and refusing to give up.
Back on the cancer front, Carolyn reminded me of a drug called Tovok (aka BIBW-2992) from German company Boehringer-Ingelheim. Some of Tovok's Phase III trials for non-small cell lung cancer have primary completion dates within the year. One study (LUX-Lung I) will hopefully be completed this month. This is important news for people (like yours truly) taking first generation EGFR (epidermal growth factor receptor) inhibitors Tarceva and Iressa, as Tovok is an irreversible inhibitor. Unlike first generation inhibitors, the hope is that irreversible EGFR inhibitors will overcome lung cancer's aquired resistance (through a secondary gene mutation) to the first generation drugs. It's supposedly effective on gene mutations not sensitive to Tarceva and Iressa (about 5 mutations), and on an additional front (HER2). Another drug in trials with Tovok is BIBW 1120 (Vargatef), which I know little about but is being tested in second and third-line settings (people who've had two or more chemo courses) for lung cancer. The UC Davis oncologist I saw felt Tovok was the most promising new treatment for a greater patient population (besides the EML4-ALK translocation wonder drug PF-02341066) than is currently served by Tarceva and Iressa. Now, for affordable genetic mutation testing…and to hang in until the FDA approves it (it's been fast-tracked).