Monday 6 September 2010

’Scuse me while I kiss the sky.

I recently said to my mate Weeza that it’s a wonder my post-Bullshit life hasn’t turned me to drink, given how often it makes me feel like a manic depressive. I’ve talked before about the high highs and low lows that are my life; and how the days of blissful boringness are so few and far between that my existence is less of a rollercoaster than an eternally bouncing bungee cord, alternating wildly between free-falls into the grand canyon and head-rushing catapults towards the space station. Bouts of chemo tempered with kind tweets from Stephen Fry; scan-result anxiety set against book-launch excitement; apprehension about next week’s surgery juxtaposed with letters from Dave Grohl…

Oh, I’m sorry – did I just say ‘letters from Dave Grohl’? Oh dear. Did I let it slip that Dave ‘top of my list’ Grohl has written me a letter? And did I also mention that he’s signed a copy of my book? 
Did I? Did I actually say that stuff out loud? Hm? Did I? 
Too fucking right I did.

‘I’ve got an amazing birthday present for you,’ said my LA-based mate Ant. ‘You can’t have it for a while yet but I can’t wait any longer to tell you about it.’
‘Ooh! What?’
‘Well, remember I told you that my brother’s ex knew someone who worked as Dave Grohl’s assistant…?’
I obliged her drumroll of a hint with a couple of seconds of dramatic-effect silence.
‘Well, she’s got something for you. … A letter. … From Grohl himself.’
‘You’re fucking kidding me!’ I yelped in startling high-pitch, sending every dog in south London into an epileptic fit. ‘Squeeeeeeeeeeeeee!’
‘And he’s signed a copy of your book as well.’
‘Fuck off! Fuck right off! You’re joking! MY book? He’s ACTUALLY HELD a copy of MY BOOK?’
‘He held it in his hands? In his ACTUAL HANDS?’
‘Oh, um, you’ve gone all weird.’
‘Sorreeee! But omigodomigodomigod it’s just ah-may-zi… Peeeeeeeee!’ I interrupted myself, squealing through the flat, ‘Ant’s got me a letter from Dave Grohl! An ACTUAL letter! And he’s signed a copy of my book! My ACTUAL book! Signed by Dave Grohl! Eeeeeeee!’
‘That’s great, love,’ came the unruffled response from the kitchen.
‘Eeeep! What does it say?’ I squeaked into the receiver. ‘Whatdoesitsay? Whatdoesitsay? Doyouknowwhatitsays?’
‘No, I’ve no idea,’ said Ant, sidestepping the urge to suggest that it’s probably less marriage-proposal than cease-and-desist order. ‘But it’s going to get dropped off with me in LA and then I’ll post it onto you, so it might be a couple of months til you get it.’
‘Oh, bird – that genuinely doesn’t matter. Omigodomigodomigod. An ACTUAL letter. And I know it’s coming. Mate, I can wait FOREVER. Omigodomigodomigod.’
‘Er, Mac… you’ve gone all strange again.’

On this occasion, then, you might forgive the following fate-tempting words when I say that, lately, it feels a little like the balance of my maniacal moods has tipped, and that the tide is getting promisingly higher on my luck-levels.

Well, I say ‘lately’. That’s a bit of a fib, actually, given that I’ve been sitting on my next bit of good fortune for a wee while, but it’s only now that I am able to unzip my gob and finally – officially – spill the goods. (A bit like my wonderfully overexcitable brother who spends every November badgering you to let him reveal what he’s got you for Christmas, only to drop a massive clanger of an it-plays-DVDs style hint at 11pm on Christmas Eve.) So, if you thought I’d lost my ability to play it cool – ha, as if it ever existed – with The Dave Grohl News, then try this on for size: the BBC are developing an adaptation of The C-Word

*happydances on spot, screams like the kid in Little Miss Sunshine, checks pulse to confirm hasn’t died and gone to heaven*

Yup, an adaptation! Of my book! An ACTUAL dramatic adaptation! For 90 ACTUAL minutes! In development by the ACTUAL BBC, courtesy of the ACTUAL executive-producing genius that is the ACTUAL Susan Hogg! For the ACTUAL telly! On the ACTUAL BBC1! Played by ACTUAL actors! With an ACTUAL… okay, you get it. See what I mean about cracking my head against the space station?

So yeah, welcome to my increasingly surreal life. This week, for instance, has been a brilliantly bipolar blend of worrying myself into borderline catatonia about next week’s surgery and – cue hypomania – grinning myself into excitement-induced insomnia thinking about who might play me. (And P. And Jamie. And Mum. And Dad. And Tills. And Smiley Surgeon. And Sgt Pepper.) One minute it’s depression, the next it’s delirium; my only mood-stabilizer being the bafflingly accidental development of my ability to fall into a skip-full of shit and somehow clamber out smelling like a Jo Malone flagship store.

My mates are endlessly entertained by all this, of course, but what none of them can agree on is whether you’d call my crazy fortunes inherently good or bad? ‘If we didn’t love you so much,’ said one friend after my back-break, ‘I think we’d all probably think twice about being mates with such an unlucky person.’  ‘I mean, publishing a book!’ said another after The C-Word’s release. ‘You’re such a lucky bitch! I’d love for that to happen to me.’

But which friend was right? Let’s look at the evidence. Girl born to wonderful family, has happy life, meets fantastic boy, gets married, has miscarriages, discovers cancer, loses left tit, writes blog, loses hair, gets better, enters menopause, discovers BRCA gene, publishes book, breaks back, loses right tit and ovaries, gets letter from Dave Grohl, has film made about life… I mean, Jaysus, I sure as heck don’t know which way to call it. (No bloody wonder this is being developed into a drama.)

So – lucky bitch? Unlucky bitch? There’s probably a bit of truth in both, and thus I don’t mind either way… people can come to whatever conclusion they like. But, as I’m sure anyone would agree, one thing you can never say is that this – whether intentional or otherwise – is anything other than the very definition of milking The Bullshit for all its worth.

What was it a wise man once said? Oh aye – when life gives you lemons, grab the tequila.


Helen said...

Oh. My. God. I am SO HAPPY for you!!!! Truly incredible. And couldn't happen to a lovelier lady xxxx

ps: me, thee, gin. Soon.

Anonymous said...

Eeeeeekkkk! *does happy dance*

*falls over at remembering the Dave Grohl thing*

*drools while lying on the floor at the thought of Dave Grohl*

Quarkmonkey said...

I've never heard that tequila phrase before. I might get a tattoo of it.

By the way, I'd have killed to be witness to that Dave Grohl scene as described. Can you get them to add it to the BBC adaptation somehow?

notquiteginger said...

I'm placing my bet now that you'll be played by Billie Piper and P will be played by Matthew Horne from Gavin and Stacey.....

Rhys Wilkins said...

Lucky or unlucky, it's not what happens, it's how you deal with it. The way you've dealt with it, kept going, and risen above it, and kept me (and pinkgoddess) amused while it all happened is unbelievable. So you deserve it all, and I'll watch the adaptation on the BBC, imagining you at the back going "Squeeeeeeeeeee!" all the way through.

You go, girlfriend!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations - excellent. Good luck with it. Keep those beeb peeps in line! Fi x

Anonymous said...

The unlickiest luckiest person....or else the luckiest unluckiest person?

I'd just say that well done for you making something good, and inspiring and positive and hopeful come out of something so bad.

Enjoy the now and the future. Actually.

billy said...

Hey amazing girl, good luck for next week. Each time I read your posts you make me work alittle harder on my dreams. Congratulations on the letter and the drama. You are very cool.

Wardotron said...

Can I be an extra during filming? I promise not to get my knob out or anything.*

(*Not an actual promise.)

Carlie said...

Excellent news about the drama! Can educate some of those people who thinks its an 'easy' cancer to get...and there are some of them about. I'd like to see one of them try chemo. Well no, actually I wouldnt wish that on anyone!

Anonymous said...

Brilliant. You deserve all your good fortune.

lilianavonk said...

I don't think it's even remotely a question of you being lucky or unlucky.

It's simply this: those of us who know (and hence automatically love) you are unbelievably lucky to have you in our lives.

{{massive happy-yayz-hugs}}

P.S. Pretty sure Sgt. Pepper has to be play herself or it's going to be no end of grief with her demanding final casting approval.