You may remember from a previous post that my good friend, Jared Reichbaum, is making a documentary film inspired by my story and based on his amazing adventures. Well, he has just embarked on a truly remarkable adventure. Truly. Remarkable. So I’ll remark about it. Jared is walking across the United States of America. That’s right, he’s WALKING ACROSS the country, with an ‘r‘. Badass level: Maximum. Jared started his trek in the Atlantic Ocean in New Jersey, and he’s going to enter the Pacific Ocean sometime this fall, after walking well over 3,000 miles and through about 7 pairs of Asics. So that right there is enough to be in the stellar human category, but no, Jared isn’t satisfied with just the stellar human badge, he’s going way beyond that by Walking Across Amarrowca! Ya, this little walk of his is going to include many Be The Match bone marrow donor drives along his route, coordinated by Be The Match, culminating in one huge-ass celebration donor drive when he arrives at the Pacific coast. Jared’s first major destination after departing Atlantic City was Philadelphia.
There in the City of Brotherly Love, on April 18th, Todd and I joined Jared and his fantastic family and friends for the Be The Match 5K, benefitting the National Bone Marrow Registry. At the finish line, Jared pulled a Forrest Gump, and just kept on going. Once Jared reaches the Nevada/California border (probably October), I plan to join him to walk across California. Should take a couple of weeks 🙂 He is pushing a cart containing all he might need on his journey, including a tent, a little stove, water, food, several pairs of shoes, many layers of clothing, cheek swabbing kits, rain gear, sunscreen, blister kit, and most importantly, bear mace! His is no ordinary walk-across-the-country-cart, either. Jared pimped his cart. He’s got a rear view mirror (the better to see you – bears/rabid dogs/felons – with, my dears), a tall mast flying an Amarrowcan flag, flat-proof/beefy tires, cushy/shock absorbing handle grip, and of course, Walking Across Ammarowca signage. Jared has posted a Kickstarter campaign to help with his journey’s expenses as well as post production costs for what will be an incredible documentary. Check it out by clicking the logo below. Be sure to watch the short trailer for his film and check out ways you can be a part of the project!
When Jared reaches his hometown of Pittsburgh, he will have the honor of throwing out the first pitch at the Pirates (he’s been a huge Pirates fan his entire life) vs. Twins game on May 19! How f-ing cool is that? It’s ice cold, I tell ya.
Two days ago, I attended City of Hope’s 39th annual Bone Marrow Transplant Reunion. This was my third reunion, and once again, it brought to light just how lucky I am to be treated at such a magical place. I was joined by my amazing and miraculous caretaker, Todd, my hero life-saving marrow donating brother, Leason, and my life-saving, stem cell donating-to-a-stranger son, Rex. When all donors were asked to stand, it was absolutely incredible to have my brother and my son both stand up. They got a huge applause!
Now that I’m feeling stronger, I’ve been very busy checking items off my bucket list. Not that I’m feeling any urgency or anything. Our hilarious and supportive friend, Bart recently suggested that all buckets be removed from our home. I would just like to let Bart know that, while I appreciate his concern with my bucket list obsession, actually kicking the bucket is NOT on the list. Recent bucket list stompings:
Last week, I witnessed one of the coolest things ever and I knew I had to try it, so even though it was not officially on my list, I consider it a spur of the moment add:
For my birthday (52!), my dear friends, Jae and Kristin took me out for a day of bucket list fun, complete with YOLT caps! We raced around a track, as a warm up for my real race car bucket list item, and we selected a “Top 100” book, Their Eyes Were Watching God, that will count towards another list entry of reading all 100 of the best books ever written.
UPDATE: As soon as Dr. F saw my blood work results at my last appointment, he remarked that my counts were remarkably unremarkable. I’ll take that as a compliment. My blood could not be doing any better, which is AWEandthenSOME! I still have a little eye shituation, but I’m seeing my ophthalmologist Dr. K this week, so hopefully she can help me out with Mr. Righty’s constant tearing and inflammation. I am going to schedule surgery on Mr. Lefty very soon, ’cause it would be really nice to see out of him, and I live for playing pirate post op 🙂 This week reminds me of the good ole days, with three medical appointments: Dr. K, Dr. J (dermo) and Dr. F, along with AFBT – Another F-ing Blood Test and AFBS – Another F-ing Booster Shot.
Oh ya, I almost forgot – my new favorite: ASY – Always Say Yes!