Off-Topic Forum

The MPIP Off-Topic Forum is a community bulletin board that provides the melanoma community with a safe space to share experiences and to give and find support from others who can relate to having or caring for someone with a melanoma diagnosis. Please note: if you have an urgent question about melanoma to ask the community, visit the main MPIP Forum.

MPIP is the oldest and largest community of people affected by melanoma hosted through the Melanoma Research Foundation. It is designed to provide support and information to caregivers, patients, family and friends. Once you have been touched by melanoma—either as a patient or as a family member or friend of a patient—you become part of a community. It is not a community anyone joins willingly. But if you must be part of this group, you will find no better place to find the tools you need in your journey with this cancer, and the friends who can make that journey more bearable.

The information on the bulletin board is open and accessible to everyone. To add a new topic or to post a reply, you must be a registered user. Please note that you will be able to post both topics and replies anonymously even though you are logged in. All posts must abide by MRF posting policies.

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Tim--MRF's picture
Replies 12
Last reply 10/4/2010 - 10:57pm

Some of you have interacted with Kathy, who is the guru we have found to work with our web folks.  She is a super star, and has just added a new feature.

From now on when you click on a topic and view replies, any reply that has been added since the last time you looked will be flagged with a big yellow note saying New Reply.  This will make it easy to dip into a post and look only at what is new. 

Still working on a little glitch that keeps this from popping up on the second page of replies, but that should be fixed soon.

Kudos to Kathy for fixing this.



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dian in spokane's picture
Replies 11
Last reply 10/4/2010 - 1:53pm

I just came home and turned on the TV and Rachael Ray was on. No..Rachael doesn't creep me out that much. She always reminds me of my dad, who had a little crush on her before he died.

But..she had this bedbug guy on. Now, I've pretty much avoided most of the bedbug coverage for two reasons:

1) the pictures of the little critters make me itch

2) I have been traveling since April and there's no way out of it.

I've been LOOKING for bedbugs of course, but apparently not diligently enough.

Here's what the bedbug guy said. First thing, if you get any packages in the mail in cardboard boxes, first thing, empty them out and leave them outside. Don't store those empty boxes in your house. WELL.. I have a quarter of my basement filled with empty boxes, or worse, boxes full of styrofoam that I use to mail holiday packages.

Next..say you just spent the day at Bloomies or Macy's and come home with an armload of bags loaded with fall fashion. What do you do? You got it, shake'm out in the mud room, put them immediately into the washer, get those bags out of the house. Do you do that?

Just got home from that vacation? unload your suitcase right into your washer..well..shake everything out first..over a light colored towel, then..vacuum your suitcase. I have NEVER even considered vacuuming my suitcase.

I'm officially creeped out. I've never been the kind of person to obsess over housework. Some would say I'm the opposite, but I can't stand the idea that a bedbug infestation is almost inevitable.

Think I'll make a martini.


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dian in spokane's picture
Replies 10
Last reply 10/4/2010 - 2:26pm
Replies by: Anonymous, JMart, dian in spokane, DebbieH, TinaR, jackiewin, LizzM, jag

I am heartsick this morning to read of ANOTHER child killed by the mother's boyfriend in my fair city. It seems like since I moved here in 1971, man after another has beaten a child to death. It happens here so often that it just fills me with despair instead of anger now. I wonder if it's the water, or if it just happens everywhere.

Spokane is a relatively small place. I mean.. I grew up in Los Angelos county. Maybe back then, I was just too young to pay attention to the news, so I didn't notice that men were beating kids to death in LA too, but's always front page news. It's not always MEN mind you.. a couple of years ago, a woman killed her one of her kids, insanely, stabbing her in the car, and almost killing a second one and stabbing herself. But.. with her..well..she was nuts, as is so often the case. With the's always some stupid idiot who gets mad that the kid is crying or something and kills them by accident. I blame the dumbassed women who leave their kids in the care of these gusy too.

Last night, this fellow, james cooley, was arrested for beating a one year old to death. His five yr old brother is also injured, but the part that makes me want to VOMIT is that this guy already has a PENDING case in the courts for shaking a 6 month old baby and causing it to go blind.

It's sickening

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Anonymous's picture
Replies 25
Last reply 9/30/2010 - 3:43pm

Anyone watch this new 'reality' show?  Three sister wives and their husband is now courting a fourth potential wife.

Luke 1:37

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Yawn's picture
Replies 30
Last reply 10/10/2010 - 5:12pm

No more XXX theater action because of bed bugs. That's about it.

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TinaR's picture
Replies 31
Last reply 10/8/2011 - 8:05am

So, I'm a little stressed with all that's going on in my son is back in the hospital not feeling well at all --BUT he is cheerful ( I like that about him) .  He was hysterically laughing this morning when I told him that the priest from our old parish called to advise that the wedding invitation  my son's fiancee sent was "hinkey"... The directions included the number at the resort to reserve rooms for the weekend and when the priest called connected him to "GIRLS GIRLS GIRLS!! For a good time press number..." 

Seems the fiancee gave the printer the wrong number!  ( the priest laughed, too).  I already knew as my 80 year old aunt had called me a couple of days ago expressing her mock, giggly horror - SO funny.  The fiancee doesn't think so....she doesn't  have any sense of  humor. I worry about my son's future.

Son was released from hospital last Monday ..but nauseous all week/sick...started  vomiting blood again and now it's coming from other locations. He will have a procedure today to figure out what's going on  . I'm out of my mind ( I want to take him to a real hospital in Baltimore, but I'm afraid he will bleed to death on the drive down there) ... I don't like this hospital at all...waiting for pain meds takes forever,  the room is dirty and smells, the nurse on duty last night looks like she hasn't combed her hair in months..even the curtain that wraps around the bed has visible stains! AND they don't have wifi? WHAT kind of place is this? He will get some sort of drug resistant bacteria for sure. I had to hold a bottle of scented hand cream to my nose while there- it is that bad. His fiancee is a nurse in this health care system-he wants to be where she is and refuses to listen to his Mommy.  I am NOT liking this trend...( AND she's wearing colored clod-hoppers under her pretty, ivory, crystal beaded wedding gown?!? WTH?)



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Bonnie Lea's picture
Replies 0

I just now realized..... (hours after the fact)  that Idid not have to click my login thingy, nor the one that says  'remember me'  when I asked for here, voila it came, and I just now figured it out!   Today is aslow brain day for me.


just thought I would ask if anyone today who has had to do that each time the computer has been shut off  did not have to do it.

Just Keep on Hanging In

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LV's picture
Replies 9
Last reply 9/29/2010 - 9:26pm
Replies by: TinaR, LV, Yawn, bcl, jag, King, Bonnie Lea

Today marks 2 years since my husband passed away. For a number of reasons, I feel an obligation to mark it here, as this board has been a virtual second home for me for a long time. Like any family, there have been squabbles and misunderstandings, but family is family, and like it or not, you're stuck with me.

Time is a funny thing. It goes both fast and slow at the same time. It seems like both ages ago, and just yesterday. Some things I remember clearly, and some things fade away, and too bad I don't get to choose which.

Grayum was a great guy, and still was sometimes hard to live with. Maybe that's true of any long-term relationship. Some things have been just incredibly hard since he's been gone, and honestly, some things have been easier (oh, I'm so glad he's not having to worry his business through these awful economic times; he would have been miserable, and so would everybody he dealt with, including me, lol! The man was born to worry). I'm truly sorry that he didn't get to see his sons graduate from college, and start grad school, but I can feel his pride every time I look at them.

I was afraid I would be a puddle on the floor today, especially as a couple of big things have happened in the last month or so, but hell, I'm not even drunk! I had to have my dog put down last month. She was a 14 year old golden retreiver mix that he brought home one day, and the best dog I ever was owned by. By god, that was hard. I was also finally able to let go of his truck, and sold it last week. It was the last big part of him to go - funny how inanimate objects can represent a person so clearly. But that truck was purely him, right down to the Uranus symbol on the gate, and the origami crane hanging from the rear-view mirror. He was a man who loved his mixed messages!

There were two things we talked about as ways for him to let me know he was around after he died. One was floating a white feather horizontally, a la John Lennon. The other was to just tap me on the shoulder. Both of these things have happened. So I'm a believer in some kind of afterlife. Sometimes it seems like he still likes to mess with my head, just because he can. I've started dating (!!) and the man I'm seeing just happens to have his birthday on the same day as G's death. 364 other days to choose from, and it has to fall on the same day? WTF? I don't really believe in coincidence, so it's kind of hard to not see his hand in this. Call me crazy if you like - oh wait, I think many of you already have.

So, anyway. In spite of the changes, I'm glad to still have this board. It certainy has a place in my heart (or what passes for my heart, anyway).  I would like to ask each of you to hug someone you love today, and remember why you love them. Celebrate love in every way you can.



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BillMFl's picture
Replies 7
Last reply 9/28/2010 - 2:39pm
Replies by: jag, LV, BillMFl

Just east of Indianapolis. Closed both directions on I70. Pickup truck headed west crossed median and hit semi head on. Big fire. One dead and another badly burned. Road closed for almost 8 hours. I made an illegal U turn after sitting in dead stop traffic that went as far as we could see. Lost an hour and a half on back road detour. Talked to another couple tonight that were stuck for 2 and a half hours. Huge mess.

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DebbieH's picture
Replies 5
Last reply 9/27/2010 - 4:26pm

I see a chat discussion here earlier in the week, asking what our thought were to bring people in.  Dian suggested chat the other night and we had a nice big room again, at long last.  Thanks Dian!!

For me, it was what chat used to be, full of laughs and friendly banter, with a few insults thrown in (thanks for the new nicknames, Kevin).  The bulletin boards do a great job for the actual melanoma information, people know if they post a question there it will be answered, but chat is where we could go and talk to people who already know what we're going through, and have been through, and we can talk and laugh and NOT speak of it all the time.  Sometimes it's hard to do that with our loved ones, especially for those newly diagnosed.  We have ALWAYS asked anyone entering the room if they have melanoma questions, and those are addressed and I imagine that's the way it wil always be, as it should be.

Anyway, I just wanted to say that it was a lot of fun, with a lot of laughing, and I hope this is the way chat stays.

DebbieH, stage IIIC, NED 9+ years.

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BillMFl's picture
Replies 5
Last reply 9/26/2010 - 9:56pm
Replies by: BillMFl, Jocelyn, Janner

Closed the cabin and boat and left Maine. On my way to Santa Fe via Denver and western Colorado. Parked in Carlisle, Pa tonight.  Another 1500 miles to Denver.  Looooong drive. Hope I still annoy some of you. Hugs to the rest. :)

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King's picture
Replies 6
Last reply 9/29/2010 - 6:34am

I know many of the old timers are not here any reason or another.  However, I just can't let today get by without reminding everyone that it was 3 years ago today that SheilaNB  left us.  I will never forget that woman.  I know NancyD recently met up with Norm.    We miss you, Sheila!!!!

Stay Strong

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tanyasteve's picture
Replies 10
Last reply 9/28/2010 - 4:22pm

For anyone who didn't hear, I was in a very bad horseriding accident on Sept. 13th. I was flown from my daughters house in Hartel, Colorado to a level 1 Trauma center in Denver. I was in a coma for 2 weeks. The doctors gave very little hope for my survival. My son, a paramedic, agreed with them and told my wife that if my body survived overnight I would most likely be brain dead. The day after one of the trauma doctors told my daughter that my organs WOULD start to fail and that they needed to just let me go, I opened my eyes. In the accident, every bone in my face was broken. I was on a ventalator, feeding tube, cath, and all kinds of IV's. I had reconstructive surgery to put my face back together. I was taken from the Trauma ICU to a Long Term Acute Care Facility. I have been here for three weeks and will be released tomorrow to home care. Most people leave this type of care to a inpatient rehab or skilled nursing home. I am not like most people and will be skipping those levels. I have been encouraged by the emails, postings, phone calls, ect from all of you. Thank you for all the prayers and help to my family.

My vision is not as good as it was and I don't read a computer screen well right now. I am hoping to get a bigger screen and have my vision improve so that I can be on here more. I missed the interaction with all the great people on here. I look forward to my late night chats(and anytime chats) with you all again. My daughter is installing high-speed internet at her house for me so hopefully I can be on even more than before. You can email me at to send personal messages.

Semper Fi, JerryfromFauq

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Bonnie Lea's picture
Replies 5
Last reply 9/30/2010 - 11:46am

I was just checking in before I shut off computer.  I see that the subject matter line is now in Blue Print.  I wonder if perhaps that means we will have a way to see if we have read the posts?  that would be nice.


Bonnie Leaenlightened

Just Keep on Hanging In

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dian in spokane's picture
Replies 4
Last reply 9/24/2010 - 5:23pm
Replies by: StanN, Tim--MRF, TinaR, Kimmer

I promised Cyn I would write about my travels, although it would take several posts to cover them all. It was the upoming ones that Rox referred to..but, that's for later.

I've been gone almost all summer, and while some have not been posting because of the board changes, my lack of posting has more to do with the fact that I've been using my tiny netbook, which is wretched for the board, and which..for some unfathomable reason, just suddenly changes pages on me halfway through long posts. I'm on my husband's 'bigboy' right now (the wide screen desktop) and it makes all the difference!

Soon my brand new 17 inch laptop will be hooked up and running, and I'll only use the tiny one for travel.

I've been gone since my trial started back in June (even before, we started traveling in may) The traveling back and forth from California for the trial has been tedious at times, with many wasted hours in airports and hanging around the Hoag, but many other hours walking on the beach, watching the sunset on the pacific and driving around to different destinations.

I don't know if I shared our trip to Lake Arrowhead, a destination of my childhood. My family had a cabin up there and we would go winters and play in the snow, and summers and play on the Lake. I had my first frostbite there, and my horrible experience with nettles, and also a sunburn that made me so sick I had hallucinations..and probably gave me melanoma. I had a lot of wonderful memories of Arrowhead, but had totally forgotten the terrifying drive up there, along a highway called "The  Rim of the World Highway" It was a the source of my long time fear of mountain passes.

In between the many trips to California, and the many trips to Las Vegas, we crammed the summer full of music, going to one festival after another all summer. I would fly down to California, get a shot, come home, fill the motor home with food and off we would go.

After many months of hard work, my band finally released our CD, so we spent a lot of time playing assorted stupid gigs and selling CDs. including getting to play a prime dinner time show at our town's local Labor Day Festival: Pig Out in the Park. Just as full of food and beer as you can imagine. If you are interested in hearing a little sample, you can check it out here:

It's almost a relief to have summer come to an end. I've had a whole week here in my own house alone (Bob's been in Vegas) and it's been peaceful and fine, even though I get PET scan results tomorrow!

My cats have thrived without me, growing fat and sassy. The orange girl is vastly entertaining, throwing her little squeaky mouses into the air 5 or 6 ft up. The tuxedo cat, who I am convinced was born wild, is outside hunting real vermin most of the time. He comes in for his daily dose of steroids. He and I were starting to get along until he ran between my feet earlier this month and brought me tumbling down in the kitchen. He was under me. Since then he's been steering clear of me again. The orange one is very lovable though. She's still not a lap cat, but she will come demanding attention. We got them a year ago this week, so it's taken a while.

Mean Joe Greene...I'm sure you all remember that my 92 yr old father in law started driving his new RV from Vegas to NY last july and the folks at the the Flying J started it on fire. His insurance paid out on that, and he got another one from the lot next door in St George and drove it home to Vegas last month. Earlier this month he decided he would drive it up here to Spokane for the Jewish holidays. He's told me he doesn't really ever want to fly again, but he always comes here for Yom Kippur because he likes our temple. So...Sept 10th or thereabouts he headed up I 15 again...made it just PAST St George this time and blew a rod in the RV. I'm kind of hoping he gets a little Kia or something and gives up on the whole RV thing.

The upcoming girlie travel Rox mentioned has to do with two exciting upcoming girlie events. Something I rarely get involved in. I mean, mostly I hang out with guys, just because most of the musicians I know are guys. But that's changed over the years, more and more women musicians have moved into my circle, and the last few years, some of them have become dear friends. One of them goes every winter to Hawaii for a few months and surfs. And another of them has managed to organize a group of us, 4 or 5, who have all committed to a trip over there to Hawaii in January. January is a pretty nice time to get away from WA state.

Before that, next month, all of my sisters and I are having a weekend getaway on Vashon Island out there west of Seattle. It will be the first time we've all been together since my father's funeral, and the last time that before that we were all children.

Also on the horizon, a possible trip east for a meeting with yet another group of women friends, who I sometimes call 'the chub club' We all 'met' on a message board 10 yrs ago and have continued a sort of email penpal group all of these years. In that time, our group has been touched by the death of a spouse, divorce, cancer, marriage, childbirth, kids graduating college, grandchildren being born. We've shared things with each other that even our families don't know. Only a few of us have met each other, but we still feel like lifelong friends. We are such a diverse group, that I can't quite imagine how we will all find the time to meet, but I'll try to be a part of it if it happens.

OH..and I FINALLY get to meet the  DIVA! DebbieVA that is! She's coming to Seattle next month to compete in some millions strong vocal competition and DonW and I are gonna have some beers with something. And show her some NW sunsets and such. I'll play that Angel Band and see what it sounds like to have angelic adeline voices singing along on the chorus..Come and around me stand. ..or..maybe I'll find something more upbeat<G>

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