Giving it from both ends

Two days ago I had a colonoscopy. The doctor found and removed a polyp. Routine stuff. Today it was what I guess is called an endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography. The first looked up my ass, the second down my gullet, in this case to look inside my pancreas to see if cystic lesions appearing in an MRI were communicating with the pancreatic duct. Nothing was found. Not sure what that means. Probably nothing.

Both involved so much sedation that I remember approximately nothing from either. Well, I remember waking up enough to see the polyp on TV. It looked like a sea anemone. I slept through the second procedure entirely, or forgot it thanks to the drugs’ amnesiac effect.

There is a risk of pancreatitis with the latter procedure. Makes for icky reading. It does concern me that my tummy hurts a great deal — enough that the work I hoped I could get done tonight is nowhere near my mind. My tummy always hurts when I’m hungry, and it hurts the same way now, so I don’t know what the deal is there. All I can eat is sherbet; and all I can drink are broth and water, neither of which leave me feeling filled.

I can’t sleep. And all I can think about is health shit. Or vice versa. So I blog. Comes naturally.

Got a lot of travel coming up. Supernova in San Francisco. VRM-related stuff in Utah. “Home” for a day in Santa Barbara before going to London and Copehagen for business and more VRM-related stuff. (Reboot is at the latter.)

People tell me that travel is bad for me, but the truth is that I love it. The thrill of flying over and studying the Earth never leaves me. In fact it only gets more interesting every time I fly somewhere because every flight is a chance to learn more about what’s on the ground — and whatever else is in the sky. Such as rainbow ice and auroras.

Anyway, all this stuff is about getting older. The failings of the body and the enrichment of the mind. Another of life’s wonderful ironies.

[Later…] Meanwhile it turns out that Maarten’s tumor is a mediastinal germ cell one. It’s treatable, and he goes in for chemo shortly. As cancer goes, that’s good news.


  1. Sheila Lennon’s avatar

    Glad to hear the no-news good news, Doc.

    That Wikipedia article really frowns on doing this simply for diagnostic purposes. No wonder your belly aches.

  2. Andrew Leyden’s avatar

    Maybe you should take the boat sometime. QM2 is leaving NY to Southampton in a few weeks

  3. Linker Barn: Saturday June 14’s avatar

    […] Doc Searls on the Journey to the Center of Your Behind. […]

  4. Nick Nichols’s avatar

    Wishing you a speedy and full recovery, Doc.

  5. Stephen Lewis’s avatar

    “The failing of the body and the enrichment of the mind” … it is as if the soul moves upward. As to traveling: f you have the will and resilience to travel — and the inner youth and strength to enjoy it — both soul and body have long lives ahead of them! S

  6. Doc Searls’s avatar

    Sheila, I noticed that about the diagnostic item. Also, my mother died after one of these types of procedures went wrong. She was 90 and had already lived a full life, but still.

    This morning my stomach hurts like hell and I have nausea. Not good, but maybe not bad either. If I can take food and keep it down it will be a good sign.

  7. Chip’s avatar


    1) wishing you well, as always
    2) found that 60 seems to be the new 30
    Did a few things around age 30 (ran a race team, won a championship – got it out of my system so I could raise a family)

    As we know, we’re a few weeks apart
    Seems that I’m busier than ever, not with the travel, but with new ventures, both profit and non-profit.

    Even have my wife screening some offers, turning down board seats.

    Part because of then net (much work done online) part as a bit of a rush to get some things done in the next 30yrs.
    (doing some work on a 50yr transportation and land use plan, and some on timber – at least a 25-50 yr crop cycle)

    Most are community related – I’ve decided I’m most comfortable working on projects that affect and relate to about a 100 mile radius.

    Take care and keep up the good work(s)

  8. francine hardaway’s avatar

    Wish I could see you at SuperNova, but I will be in Austin (travel). Last week I was in NYC (travel). Get the picture? I’m older than you, and I travel. It’s how you live your entire life that counts. You have to eat well, not smoke, sleep enough, and exercise every day. And you have to have done that for years.

    Perhaps you can’t jump on a treadmill after flying from Europe and sleeping two hours as Russert tried to do. But you can certainly do the things you love. And should.

    On the other hand, what’s good about living longer if there is no quality to your life. As Rose Kennedy always said about her late sons, “all they missed was the later days.”

  9. Lou Josephs’s avatar

    Had both of these tests about 5 years back and last summer had the endo re-done at the Mayo Clinic in MN. But they found something else at Mayo, that’s basically put me out of work and it’s something with no cure. It’s a brain disease called FTD, that means you’re brain is shrinking faster than would be normal. End result is I am on some meds that do work and also doing vitamins and supplements to enhance things.
    FYI: Russert died doing a voiceover, can you imagine what that digital file sounds like….It’s the way every radio person I ever knew wanted to go in the air chair.

  10. Tom Lewis’s avatar

    You at least think about your health which is more than most people. Stay tough – and I’m jealous of your SB visit, loved the 6 years that I lived there from ’87-’93

  11. Maarten Lens-FitzGerald’s avatar

    Good luck Doc, just read yr latest tweets. sounds tough

  12. Yarn’s avatar

    i wish you best good luck Doc.

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