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40 is the New 50...

In my last post, I referred to my original logic in naming this blog “5 Years; 500 Words at a Time,” which was to live at least five more years with advanced cancer - and to chronicle my journey along the way in hope of helping people. I just checked and my kickoff blog post was written almost two years ago today, so I am well on my way to making my goal. That said, it’s not a layup.

Ten days ago, a spinal MRI, in combination with the PSMA PET scan I had less than a month ago, conclusively determined that the cancer had progressed (for the first time) to my bones. In this case, cancer was found in vertebrae L2 and T8, which explains the intense back pain I have been experiencing for the last four months. The scan revealed “pathologic compression fractures” in my spine.

With reckless disregard for the advice I gave in blog post #3 on February 16, 2022 (“The Median is Not the Message”) I of course immediately looked up pathologic compression fractures and found that they are “associated with end stage cancer” with “high morbidity and mortality” and – according to the website I found – that 30%-40% of people with pathologic compression fractures last one year following diagnosis.

For the first time in a long time, I let some random website ruin my day. It was a mental setback that took consultations with my wife, mother, doctor, and a few glasses of wine to overcome. But I did indeed overcome it, and now re-emphasize that your life is your life… it’s not a bundle of statistics that predict your demise.

Nonetheless, I am using it as jet fuel to plan a trip this summer for which I cannot wait! On June 9, 2024, Diana and I will celebrate our 40th wedding anniversary. Given the current landscape with respect to outcomes for advanced prostate cancer patients who have failed nearly every available, FDA-approved therapy, I do not expect to be here for my 50th wedding anniversary. I hope I am (pardon the pun) dead wrong about that but in the meantime, I am going to use it as an excuse to plan an amazing trip for our 40th wedding anniversary.

We will make our first ever trip to France, and we splurged for the flat bed “Delta One” seats (tonic for my aching back). Four nights in Paris, followed by four nights on the French Riviera (well, Monaco if we want to split hairs). As a lifelong tennis fan, I’d love to get to Roland Garros for a day at the French Open – maybe I will, or maybe not. But it’s all good. I’m not a gambler, but I won’t miss the opportunity to hang out in the casino in Monte Carlo, site of cool James Bond movies I used to watch with my parents. We will do it up in France because… as they say… 40 is the new 50!

Until next time,



Keep writing my friend 💪🏻


Accroche-toi mon ami!


Jan 14

Thank you for sharing Steve. Keep fighting the good fight💪🙏


My prayers to St. Peregrine are with you and your family. Keep the blog going.

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