josh: Today I finished the initial part of the Stupp Protocol, which means I get a few weeks break from chemotherapy and I'm *done* with radiation! No more mask! The mask is how they lock you in place to make sure that you won't move and get radiation in the wrong place - nobody wants that :)
The team who operated the treatment was great - very friendly and encouraging people (they even gave me the mask), and the environment for the treatment was nice too - lots of soothing pictures and music playing. You could request music, but I pretty much never did - more on that in a moment. To celebrate the end of the radiation portion of the protocol, they have a bell for you to ring:
OK - I keep going back to music with these posts. The music thing in the radiation room was really nice, but I always got stuck when they asked me what I wanted to hear, and all but once wound up listening to whatever the last patient request had been. It was mostly country music. I'm not a huge fan of recent Nashville based country (which it often was), but sometimes it was good. The treatments are pretty short if nothing goes wrong - like 10 minutes - so I couldn't get to picky about what was being played.
But I got unexpectedly hung up when I tried to think of what sort of music I, myself, for me, wanted to listen to while getting radiation zapped at the left temporal lobe in my brain. I would think of the cancer and how much I would like for it to get popped -- Geto Boys (locals - from just a couple of miles away!)? Hmmm... What about the overall attack on the enemy? One day I mentioned "Search and Destroy" by the Stooges. Is that really appropriate? Hmmm... looking for things and destroying them... with, um, technology?... actually mentions radiation in the lyrics... They played it, and I suppose I got a kick out it, even though my brain was the venue for all that aggression.
The actual song is even more complex in its own right - James Osterberg (Iggy Pop) had read an article about certain operatives in the Vietnam War and thought about the hopelessness, overwhelming abandonment, unacceptable reality of what they were charged to do, and other awful things the draftees must be going through, I think. Definitely not a pro-war song, but neither was it an anti-soldier song.
The most recent band I was in (shameless Stooges fanboys - almost a tribute band, really), Flying Monkease, covered the song. I just could not get over the fence about asking the radiation team to play our version -- just seemed like it would be going too far. We recorded and mixed the song in my studio - I think even closer to the radiation therapy center than the Geto Boys, with our notorious singer Ron Knice, our unstoppable bass player Urian Perez, me on guitar, and because we had lost our sixth (6th) drummer, I did the drums on the computer. This is neo-proto-punk rock (haha) and may not be appropriate for all listening environments: