Tuesday, December 9, 2008

The Unbridled Joy of a Life Appreciated

My friend Janis Jaquith, who is one of the funniest people I know and one of the most natural comedic writers on earth, just had a cancer scare. She wrote about it in her Charlottesville-based column in a little alt-weekly, The Hook, and I want you to read it at this URL: http://readthehook.com/stories/2008/09/11/ESSAY-myColonTumor-jaquith-A.aspx

This is as delightfully touching a piece of philosophical self-discovery as I've ever read. I learned about the power of positive thinking in AA, but Janis' experience is ridiculously prescient, absurdly self-fulfilling. And it is written as only she can write it.

You've likely heard Janis reading her essays on NPR, with that heavy Boston accent and that matter-of-fact, life's-falling-apart-but-I-don't-mind delivery. When I introduce Janis--as I will next month at our Roanoke Regional Writers Conference at Hollins University Jan. 23-24 (http://www.hollins.edu/news-events/writers/writers.htm)--and, yes, that's a plug--I'll say that God had no right to put somebody like her among us. To begin with she's one of the prettiest people I've ever known. She's smart. She's funny. She's wise. She's a dang gorgeous Buddhist monk, for Christ's sake (uh, maybe not Christ's).

But, hey, God, thanks for sharing your joy with us in Janis.

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