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

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Charity begins at home (well, in the founders' own bank accounts, anyway)

If anyone has been approached by or attracted to something called the "Cancer Fund of America" you might be interested to share a recent post from The Bladder Cancer Web Cafe email discussion list...

I have received a few calls from the 'Cancer Fund of America' soliciting donations to help cancer patients with their daily incidentals. After listening to them for several minutes and asking questions about who they help, I then tell them that I am a cancer patient that could use some help (not really - just want to know their response). I was directed to a website or telephone number 1800-578-5284 and I was then asked for money again.

The website is sketchy to say the least. There is a form for patients to fill out to apparently receive a box of Debbie Cakes. An article by the Better Business Bureau claims "Cancer Fund of America and a related support group, Cancer Fund of America Support Services, Inc., reported they raised slightly more than $17 million in 2007, the most recent year in which public information is available. Of that total, Cancer Fund of America reported it donated $54,000 in cash to unrelated groups or individuals - or about 3/10 of 1 percent. Of that $54,000, however, $50,000 went to a court directed cancer charity as part of a settlement with the Georgia Governor's Office of Consumer Affairs. The state alleged the charity gave out deceptive and misleading solicitations to consumers. The salaries and benefit packages for charity president James T. Reynolds, Sr., two sons and a son-in-law totaled more than $537,000 for the same period."

So, before you give to them you should think twice. How they are still getting away with this practice is beyond me.

It seems our friends at Cancer Fund of America have been hounding people for money since 2006 at least, according to Michael Mazack et al - it's well worth reading their experiences here. And the Bladder Cancer Cafe poster, along with Mr Mazack, are not alone; when I did a Google search of the words "Cancer Fund of America scam" there were more than 200,000 results. Not what you'd call a flash in the pan.

Having had a quick gallop through the text on the Cancer Fund of America Inc's home page (and found two mistakes in their English/spelling,) I then clicked on through the site. I was not particularly reassured by their President's message, much as the beaming Mr Reynolds almost looks nice enough to buy a used car from. But then I'm hardly likely to buy a car from Knoxville, Tennessee (their official address, although they say they are a Delaware Corporation - and by sheer coincidence, of course, these appear to have comparatively relaxed rules and regulations.)

Perhaps someone should suggest the charity is renamed "The Reynolds Family Get-Rich-Quick Fund." Ain't life grand?

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Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Melanoma alert: keep your bum out of the sun

A recent study conducted by the University of Edinburgh found that of all parts of your body, those which tan the most ineffectively are the buttocks.

"The findings, published in the journal Experimental Dermatology, show that the buttock is much more resistant to sunshine," says the University of Edinburgh press release. "But when it does go red it tans less well than other areas."

"The fact that different types of skin cancer tend to be found in different parts of the body has long puzzled scientists, given that they are all caused by exposure to sunshine," the release continues. "The team aimed to identify whether this is linked to variations in the way different parts of the body develop a tan."

So be warned; the next time you're tempted to moon at the sun, don't forget the high-factor sunblock...