I’ve never really been that competitive. I played at it in high school but it never really meant anything to me. Losing never seemed like that big a deal. Maybe it’s because of my stable middle class upbringing. Maybe it’s because I knew my parents would love me no matter what. Maybe it’s because I’ve been a Cubs fan and a Virginia Tech fan for so long that I just got used to the feeling.
And I always feel bad for my opponent. Especially those people who are like uber competitive assholes and have to win at all costs. They’re like “I hate to lose!” I’m like “We’re 38 and playing Go Fish.” I feel sorry for them because what is it that makes them hate losing so much? They’re obviously afraid of something. Not being good enough? Their father not loving them?
Sometimes if I’m playing something against someone and I am winning early in the game I’ll let them get back in it just to make things interesting.
Then I get cancer. Something I have to beat and still some small part of me is like “I hope it’s close.” Maybe it’s because I’ve been writing theatre for so long that I judge everything based on their dramatic components. The human in me is like “cancer is so lame” but the writer in me is like “cancer is so interesting. What is that? Stage 4 you say? Oooohh, way to raise the stakes.”
But cancer has no chill. It likes to spread. It likes to get out there and go where it isn’t. It’s a very ambitious and eager little cell. I admire its spunk. But this whole thing reminds me of a game of Monopoly. One side winning means everyone else has nothing! Isn’t the exciting part of the game in the middle when you don’t know how things are going to go? Not the very end when you’re praying to land on Connecticut Avenue because your opponent literally has everything else.
But cancer is inherently stupid. It attacks the very thing keeping it alive. Like a dog biting its owner or someone in rural Kentucky hating Obamacare. And you can try to reason with it but it doesn’t listen:
Me: Hey buddy, don’t you think we can find some sort of compromise?
Cancer: Fuck your face.
Me: You know if I die that’s it for you, right?
Cancer: Your shirt is stupid.
Me: Like you die too.
Cancer: Salt life!
Me: Oh dear.
End of play.
What I’m saying is that this whole thing feels like life is a game of Monopoly. And all my organs are having a grand time playing. My lungs, my liver, my brain, my skin. But cancer is that uber competitive Go Fish guy and wants it all. So chemotherapy is just my body getting together and colluding against this prick. The drip drip drip of Folfox is us not charging each other rent for Marvin Gardens with the express goal of bankrupting cancer. He doesn’t even get Mediterranean Avenue.