“DF tx 1 -200 to PTV_6600”

R. B. Wood

Former technologist, world traveler, & storyteller.

What the hell does that mean? I’ll get to that in a minute.

The two weeks from my last posting regarding my cancer “police action” until the first treatment went by faster than the speed of summer vacation from the perspective of a school-aged child. I’ve been a pin cushion for phlebotomists and had a special radiation mask created that will—when bolted to the table—hold my head in place so they can blast my tumor with Oppenheimer rays of glorious DNA rearranging poison.

My Oncologist originally told me (rather emphatically, I might add) that my six and a half weeks of daily radiation must begin on a Monday—which meant that I should have started yesterday (31 July). But I’m starting on Tuesday the 1st of August. Why?

Well…T and I, along with friends Rachel and Joel, had P!nk tickets at Fenway Park last night. They were on the field right in front of the stage. And Pat Benatar was one of her opening acts.


“Postpone??!! But you have cancer!” you might say, aghast.

“So fucking what?” I would reply in my best New York accent.

A day won’t make a difference in my treatment parameters, and the day gave me another bit of joy in the life I share with my soul mate.

Yeah. This is my second bout of cancer. Boo-hoo. That sort of thinking is so incredibly boring.

All the diagnosis does is make me realize how limited our time is here on our giant rock hurtling through space. I might as well enjoy the time I have left—and as long as my enjoyment doesn’t hurt anyone, I’ll repeat: so fucking what?

The concert last night was a blast. This old body of mine hasn’t danced so much in a long time. P!nk was amazing—how the hell she can do all those acrobatics while singing is beyond me. She is a kind, goofy, and amazingly talented performer—and Tina and I had an amazing time at her show.


I love her music—it’s fun, political, feminist, and a delight to behold—and her backup singers, band, and dancers all hit their marks. But what sold me on the field-level seats wasn’t just P!nk.


A three-time grandmother whom I haven’t seen in concert since the 80’s was up first. Rock-n-roll hall of famer Pat Benatar hit the stage before P!nk. I’ve said before that my first crush was Olivia Newton-John. My first fantasy girl, though, was Pat Benatar.

Let me tell you…that 70-year-old rocker still has it. And while my vocal cords no longer allowed me to sing, I could still remember every word to every song she performed.

In my mind, I was transported to the early ’80s…hell, I could almost smell the pungent, ozone-destroying scent of hair spray again.


It was a night I’ll never forget, in the company of good friends, amazing music, laughter, and a giddy happiness that was worth postponing my treatment for a day.

So. Back to the title of this blog post: DF tx 1 -200 to PTV_6600

That popped up on my phone as we were heading home from the concert at about midnight last night. It stands for “Dana-Farber treatment number 1 with my proton radiation dosing /absorption in centigrays.” In other words, my iPhone was reminding me of the start of my six-and-a-half weeks of hell.

I’m ready. As P!nk says: “Let’s get this part started.”

I have a lot more life to live.

Peace, love, and hair grease. -RBW