Cancer Bitch Behaves Badly Again

I went to Caribou Coffee on my way to meet my friend F for lunch. There were bags of coffee for sale with pink ribbons on them. Part of the price goes to the Susan G. Komen foundation, which goes for--what? More pink ribbons, I suppose. I think Komen should sign on with Christo to wrap every woman with pink ribbons. Then it won't matter if they have breast cancer or not, because you won't be able to see it. As long as you can't see it, it's not a problem. And when they die, the survivors can turn the ribbons into a shroud.

Oh, where was I? Yes, Caribou does sell coffee with pink ribbons with some portion going to the Komen million-dollar ad campaign. (Really. That's true about the million dollars.) Too late to help Komen herself; she's daid. You can guess what killed her. Anyway, I asked what percentage went to the foundation, and the barista told me that the company had pledged $100,000 and she asked if I wanted to buy a bag of coffee, and I said no, that as someone with breast cancer I support an organization that researches the cause. Which is true but makes no sense. You think someone with breast cancer would be focused on cure. But I guess I'm just a selfless cancer bitch. I regret that I spoke to her in a tight, aggressive and aggrieved tone. I think she felt sorry for me because she offered me a Caribou scratcher card (Winner gets a free trip to Costa Rica!) and when I wasn't a winner she kept taking out more and more cards and scratching them even though there were people in line behind me. Finally after a half dozen cards she gave up.

I've been to Costa Rica.. I went with N in the late 1980s. I didn't have a good time there, even though we saw monkeys and lizards and the beach, because I have trouble having a good time on vacation. I get struck with ennui and the meaningless of everything. When L and I travel it always has to be to a place with a coffee house so that I can work.

I will let an honorary cancer bitch, Canadian professor Samantha King, have the last words here, from her book, Pink Ribbons, Inc: Breast Cancer and the Politics of Philanthropy: "As the Komen Foundation and its corporate sponsors continue to pump money into a research and education agenda that centers on uncritically promoting mammography, encouraging the use of pharmaceuticals to 'prevent' breast cancer, and avoiding any consideration of environmental links to the disease it becomes less clear whether they are not actually doing more harm than good...."