Cancer Comic Strip

My name is Suzan St Maur and I've had cancer twice. I find that humor helps me get through my cancer, and from what I understand it helps many others too. This blog is dedicated not to information about the disease, but to cancer warriors and their relatives/friends who just want some cheering chuckles. By all means share your funny stories and jokes with us - email them to suze @ (If you want to know more about me see my profile on here or

Friday, August 25, 2006

Trouper Grouper

Here I am in sunny (well, most of the time anyway) southern Ontario, Canada, nearing the end of our month's vacation seeing our relatives and many friends this side of the "pond." Sunday we go to St Paul, Minnesota to visit the wonderful Barb - of "drive-thru mastectomy" fame - who has contributed several hilarious posts to CancerComicStrip. (See Archives.) I can't wait to finally meet her in person!

While browsing the Toronto Star of August 25th I came across a lovely story about Bubba the grouper (fish) ... and I quote:

"CHICAGO - Bubba the Grouper, who became a hero to young cancer victims for surviving a bout with the disease, has died, his keepers at the Shedd Aquarium said yesterday."

"Bubba, who turned into an instant celebrity when he became the first fish in history known to have received chemotherapy, was about 24 years old when he died on Tuesday, according to the Shedd officials."

"The 69 kilogram "super grouper" was abandoned at the Chicago aquarium in 1987, left at the reception desk in a bucket."

"...Bubba was diagnosed with cancer in 2001, and two years later, Shedd officials took the unprecedented step of administering chemotherapy for the tumour that grew above his eyes."

"Cancer survivors, especially children, were inspired by Bubba's story of resilience, and he was a Shedd favourite."

A sweet story and one to tell all the family, but perhaps leaving one part out: when Bubba arrived at the aquarium he was a she. She changed gender in the mid 1990s. According to the Toronto Star report that's "not uncommon for certain kinds of fish."

Some creatures get the best of both worlds...

Have a great weekend and I'll "see" you when I'm back in UK early September.