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So we’ve had a few life events since the last post:

Sue, I think you know how glad we are to have you home, but I’m just gonna say it again…. HOORAY for you coming home! I know you’re not overly thrilled, but the fact is that it sucked in CA and it still sucks in SC. But I’m just happy to have our little group together again… even when you’re sitting there tapping your fingers, playing with your cell phone, downloading music, updating your facebook, bitching when we try to turn to anything but Horatio (because apparently you’re still watching him while doing all of the above), and just generally causing me stress. My sister, the multimedia-multi-tasker.

#2 – We made it through our first Thanksgiving without Mama.
It was strange, it was surreal, it was on the Pacific Ocean. And I had swordfish. It made it easier that it didn’t feel like Thanksgiving – actually, it didn’t bear even the slightest resemblance to Thanksgiving – and it helped that we weren’t trying to stay in “the mold”, only with our most important member missing. I’m really glad that we’re going to the cabin for Christmas… Thanksgiving, and the surreal feeling of it all, confirmed that going to new, neutral place for Christmas is probably the best decision that we could have made. And can I just say that I’m so, so, wow, I can’t even express how glad that no one’s going except our core group?!? Holy freakin crap, could we please just skip the drama for once!! Aunt Gin had a dramatic episode that sort of-almost-not really made our Thanksgiving worse than it already was. If we weren’t all emotionally stagnant, mentally numb, jaded and brittle, it might have mattered that Aunt Gin was pissed off. But our emotional clique stood firm, and we persevered despite all odds and once again successfully disregarded and mocked the emotional needs of others. Yay for us. We suck.

And last, but most definitely not least,

#3 – Uncle Rocky’s epiphany
Yes, much to the joy and financial gain of the cancer research community, Rocky Butcher (who also goes by the monikers of Asshole, Son-of-a-Bitch, Bastard from Hell, Pathetic Excuse for a Brother & Uncle) has recently announced his intention to raise money for the disease that took his sister’s life. At long last, Mr. Butcher has realized that perhaps there is some benefit after all to chemotheraphy, radiation, and other treatment options that prolong the lives of cancer victims. This acknowledgment comes as a great surprise to his family (what’s left of it) and friends (I mean friend-singular, poor deceived Ernie) as it is a radical paradigm shift from his previous view that cancer treatments were a rebuttal of God and indicated a lack of faith. His previous views were widely communicated to his sister’s family before her tragic death, as he criticized, judged, and outright condemned his brother-in-law and nieces for continuing to attempt to save their wife and mother’s life. Now, with each spin of his bicycle wheel and each smooth turn of his handlebars, he rides valiantly toward his goal of making a difference, THE difference in cancer research – because it’s only with through Rocky Butcher’s bicycle ride and piddly $100 donation that a cure for cancer will finally be discovered. And it is with great acclaim and applause that his sister’s family welcomes his new-found belief in and support of cancer treatments – because ultimately, acclaim and applause is what he’s going for, right? Although they won’t be making the trip to Duke, where they’ve been many times before (without the emotional or physical support of Uncle Rocky, or any of Denise’s family, for that matter), they’ll be with him in spirit – throwing a wrench in his chain, willing a malfunction of his wheels, and urging him to fall off his shitty-ass bike while crossing a very tall, narrow, treacherous bridge to plummet to the asphalt below – as he rides for THE CURE.

Um, ok, that’s all the evil sarcasm I have to disperse for now.
Thank you, thank you very much.