Friday, April 16, 2010

Very funny essay on life with a new breast!

Editor's note: I think this next essay is one of the funniest things I have ever read about breast cancer. Writer/solo performer Susan Jeremy will be performing her new show, "Brazil Nuts" here in New York City from May 7-23. More information at

In With the New, Out With the Old? 

I got a new boob!  I wasn't looking for one, it just kind of happened.
I was living my life, not on the market for any new body parts when,
boom! I got one. There was a little drama before that, like a lump, a
diagnosis, a choice: rebuild it or get a whole new one. The doctor’s
exact words were, “We cut out the lump and rebuild the breast like a
donut.” I didn’t want to be modeled after Krispy Kreme, so I chose new.

I had to make a similar choice when my ‘89 Dodge Datsun had
transmission problems.  I didn’t get a new transmission. I got a
re-built one, which basically means it’ll work but no guarantee it’ll
last.  It didn’t.  The car died a year later. So I wasn’t taking any
chances on a re-built boob. Oh no. One hundred percent new please.

Also, the thought of rebuilding something reminds me of an Ikea
cabinet. There will always be a screw missing and you will end up
building it wrong, only to have to build it again. It’s too bad I
couldn’t have ordered the boob online. Just as well, I don’t always
score with online purchases.

I probably would have gotten something much bigger than I needed like I did with my carpet. Then I couldn’t return it.  I picked my boob in the plastic surgeon’s office while looking at a catalogue!
Wow,just like Lands End!  Now I have the new boob and the other one is being difficult. No, she’s not defective, in fact she's rather healthy, just a drag to be around. For one thing there is a huge age difference
between the girls. The new one is a 25-year-old cheerleader from Dallas named Tammi with an “i”; and the other one is a cranky 45- year-old retired fact checker for “Time” magazine named Shirley who just wants to stay home. Tammi goes partying braless and jogs. Shirley watches “The Biggest Loser”, plays scrabble and prefers to walk. Here's my dilemma: they are living on the same chest - 25 versus 45. Who do I listen to?  Some of you might think, why not just replace Shirley?

She's old and not pulling her weight anymore. I could get another
cheerleader to complete the team. But why if I don’t need one? I’m from the school of “if it works, don’t throw it out”  Maybe years from now, when Shirley needs a walker ,when she’s dragging herself just to get up in the morning, then I’ll think about getting Tammi someone to cheer with.  

This all reminds me of two roommates I once had who shared a
room and were very different. One was a party girl who wore dresses and ironed, the other, a homey girl who wore flannel and whined.
They would fight and cause havoc in the apartment. Finally, I replaced them both. This is not the case with Tammi and Shirley.They can work out their differences, It’ll just take time.  I have no desire to replace Shirley at this time. She's fine. She has worldly experience
and is a wise leader. Tammi, on the other hand, has to calm down and
stop making us go out on weeknights. I overheard them arguing once;
“Oh My God, Shirley, live a little. You’re such a bore!”

“I am living, Tammi, I just do it with less unnecessary movement, I
don’t like to bounce from one thing to the next. You’re young.  You’ll
learn.  Life is hard and so are you; I don’t expect you to understand.”

Tomorrow I’m taking the girls swimming. For some reason underwater
they get along.  Must be the lack of gravity!

SUSAN JEREMY (Writer/Performer), is a solo artist known for her comedic characterizations and dry wit. She has collaborated with Mary Fulham on several Watson Arts Projects: P.S. 69, based on her real life experiences as a substitute teacher in NYC's public school system, and Was That My 15 Minutes? about her quest for fame and her relationship with her father, Frankie Lawrence, who taught America to mambo on "The Fred Waring Show." Both shows won The Just for Laughs prize in 2000 and 1998 respectively. P.S. 69 toured in the USA and was a smash hit at the 2003 Edinburgh Fringe Fest. Susan’s third collaboration with co-writer/director, Mary Fulham, was Moving in Reverse (2005), a show about class culture in Long Island that received 5 stars from the Montreal Hour. BRAZIL NUTS, Susan's newest piece, makes its New York premiere at La MaMa in May 2010.


  1. that's very funny, i got the same thing....i'm having plastic surgery on the old one tho, so they match. perky lil 20 year old boobs! whhooohooo. just all that drama at the start that really sucked

  2. Thanks for writing this post, Susan! I just read it to my husband ~ we both enjoyed your post. I've often referred to my "20 year old" vs. my 48 year old...I'm contemplating fixing the older model to attempt to match the younger. I will share this post with my breast cancer support group.
    Congratulations on your successful career. You have a fabulous sense of humor, it's wonderful you're sharing it with the world.
    Best wishes with "Brazil Nuts."

  3. PRICELESS!!! Will you be my new best friend? Love your style & attitude!

    The "new" girl on my block (we called her BOJO until she got her happy face nipple) is now ten years old, perky, cheerleading her somewhat ptotic (medical term for droopy -- actually ptosis) mate. But the both -- God love them - are as healthy as they can me.

    All the best to you!

  4. Great post. I love how we name the girls. My original pair were named "Laverne & Shirley." In my case, Shirley had to move out. Laverne stayed. In Shirley's place, Jamie will be built. She won't be the 6 million dollar boob, but she will be bionic!

  5. A Great funny post! I love your sense of humor!

  6. I chose two new ones - but a friend of mine went with a new one & a "lift kit" on the other. That's what she called it...a lift kit. She even used the remaining skin from the lift to create the nipple on her new one. All brave choices - all personal choices. Good for you. Hope Tammi & Shirley grow to get along.

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