Family and Friends Cancer Update Emails

I’ve published a set of email updates I’ve been sending to my family and friends to keep them up to date on my progress since my diagnosis back in January 2013. The best way to view these is probably via this thread which presents them in a chronological timeline.

I decided to publish these in the event that other folks with similar cancer diagnosis might find them and gain some benefit from reading about my particular journey.

This site has always been a place for me to write and reflect on the things that interest me, challenge me, and otherwise occupy my brain. As I turn much of my attention towards securing new treatment options I plan to continue to publish these here going forward. Probably sometimes with a bit of a delay, as well as talking a more about my experiences with cancer here on this site; as I feel comfortable.

This post is part of the thread: Cancer – an ongoing story on this site. View the thread timeline for more context on this post.

On Medical Leave

About a month ago I made the decision to take a medical leave of absence from Crowd Favorite. My goal is for this to be a relatively brief hiatus. I love our team and can’t wait to get back to doing cool things with them.

In the interim, I’ll be focusing on my health (more on this later) and getting myself in a good situation to return and contribute.

This post is part of the following threads: Cancer, Crowd Favorite – ongoing stories on this site. View the thread timelines for more context on this post.

To: Family & Friends

Date: October 27, 2014

Subject: Back pain returned and now receding

This was originally an email written to my family and friends on the date above. I decided to make these public in the event they may be helpful to someone in the future who is embarking on a similar journey to mine.

3 weeks ago things were going so well with my back pain that I was backing off my meds and thinking about how best to up my physical activity. Last week I got hit by the proverbial truck. Thankfully, I’m already making progress managing coming out the other side.

My current cancer treatment (Regorafenib) has a 3 week on, 1 week off dosing schedule. I had actually run a little long so took my off week after 4 weeks on. That off week corresponded with nearly a full return of my back pain. Primarily muscular pain. I got some relief from acupuncture but also heavily ramped up my pain meds and was frequently using the morphine for “breakthrough” pain on top of the pain patches.

I started up my Regorafenib treatment again on Friday last week and already managed to have a real night’s sleep on Saturday night (last night was a little rougher, but was still a huge improvement over the previous week). We aren’t sure how the Regorafenib is helping here, but I’ll take it. I’m having a scan today. It’s a little early to really see what the Regorafenib may be doing in terms of it’s effectiveness, but my doctor wanted to take a peek and see how things are coming along.

I’m hoping to hear back from the National Cancer Institute on a few possible clinical trials this week, and have made good progress through the rest of the list. As expected, many of the trials were not a good fit (only enrolling breast cancer patients now, only open to patients with genetic marker X, etc.) but many of them offered other possible trials. I hope we’ll be working with the doctors to evaluate options here in the near term to see what our next steps should be, given the options from the trial research.

So that’s the update – a pretty rough week, but doing better again now. Hopefully things will continue to improve as before, and we’ll be a little more cautious about the next “off week” from treatment.

Oh – and I hope you’re all watching the World Series; it’s been great so far!

This post is part of the thread: Cancer – an ongoing story on this site. View the thread timeline for more context on this post.

BBEdit 11.0 Release Notes →

Two big things that are now off my wishlist:

There is a new control in the status bar at the bottom of text views; it displays the current magnification of the view and allows you to change it. The control can be hidden (or shown) using the “Text Magnification” option in the Appearance preferences.

This means I no longer need to use another editor when presenting on a projector, etc. I also like larger views for writing prose, so I’ll probably use BBEdit more for that now as well.

There is now an adjustable split between the Currently Open Documents list and the Project list.

Now I can go back to using BBEdit as I did so lovingly pre-version 10 (when the open document list was in a drawer)! I submitted a ticket requesting that this pane be made resizable in 2011. :)

No WordCamp SF 2014 For Me

Unfortunately I’m not going to be able to attend WordCamp SF 2014. My apologies to those who I was planning to meet up with. I’ll miss seeing you folks there – but have fun and do great work!

When you eat a PB&J sandwich do you hold it with the peanut butter on the bottom* or the jelly on the bottom?

* Correct answer

Photos from Maine

I took a few photos in Maine during our extended weekend stay post-Monktoberfest. We stayed at an awesome 1800’s farmhouse that had been nicely renovated; had a fantastic house concert from Liz Longley, and visited Fort Popham.

A few hours dinking with my 2013 Moto X shows me that it is the overall case size (not the 4.7″ screen) that I struggle with on my iPhone 6.

WordPress vs. a Roll-Your-Own Blog Engine

Inspired by Brent’s consideration of an off-the-shelf blog engine, Santiago Valdarrama has written a post outlining the problems he has with off-the-shelf blog engines. What was so interesting to me about this was that a self-hosted WordPress site addresses nearly every one of his concerns. 1) You don’t have to deal with updates to the…

To: Family & Friends

Date: October 13, 2014

Subject: Not much to report

Hi Everyone, There isn’t *too* much to report since my last email, but it’s generally good news. I’ve made consistent progress in rebounding from the debilitating back pain I was experiencing. I’m still down about 15 pounds (and struggling to put that back on), but my back pain is largely gone. I’ve got to credit…


Casual iPhone Earbuds (w/ Mic)


The ear buds that Apple provides with the iPhone have always fallen out of my ears. I embarked on a journey of discovery recently and tested out a set of Panasonics and a set of Samsungs. Both work well and are under $15. I’m littering them in strategic places around the house and in my…