The Middle-Aged Genius’s Guide to Almost Everything 36 – Kidney Cancer is No Joke

In-Sight Publishing

The Middle-Aged Genius’s Guide to Almost Everything 36 – Kidney Cancer is No Joke

June 27, 2019

[Beginning of recorded material]

Scott Douglas Jacobsen: Why are guys made crappier, apparently?

Rick Rosner: I have gone to extreme measures to be healthy. In the past three months, I have been diagnosed with kidney cancer, have had the tumor removed, and told I was low risk, because I caught it early and am a hypochondriac and asked them to look inside me.

For kidney cancer, it is stage 1A. I have 90% chance of making it 10 years without recurrence. That’s good. One Sunday, one of my teeth disintegrated. I had to have it pulled two days ago.

So, where is all my healthiness if I am going to start losing parts or grow shit that I shouldn’t be growing, even if I take all thse pills and do all these things to stay healthy?

It might be. My wife hikes, she is about to turn 55. She has a bunch of hiking friends her age and a little older. Some are a lot older, but in their late 50s and into their 60s, early 70s. A lot of their husbands are fucking dead.

They just dropped dead. I am getting into the age where, I guess, guys start to fall apart. Maybe, I am generalizing too much from my own situation, but guys have a shorter lifespan on average. We have that one crappy Y chromosome.

It is 40% or less as long as the X chromosome. So, we’re put together shittier, perhaps, which sucks. The lesson here is – I have said this in other installments of Middle-Aged Guide – get some blood tests, have them look inside you with an ultrasound, an MRI, even if you have no symptoms when in your 50s.

If you’re in your 50s, you should already be getting colonoscopies every 5 years if your first colonoscopy turns up clean. Every 3 years if they find a polyp; the doctor should be sticking a finger up your butthole and squeezing your prostate, seeing what is up with it.

You should be getting blood tests for kidney function and for prostate, and for pancreas. I would hope you have insurance or live in a country where you don’t need insurance, like your country: Canada. Take advantage of the wellness, and diagnostic stuff if your are a guy in your 50s.

If you are a woman, if in your late 50s or early 60s, we have all this technology. Yet, we mostly don’t use it until people have symptoms. Often, in the case of kidney or pancras, you are fucked.

In the future, we will have gotten smart about this stuff. It will be easier and cheaper to look inside of people. We will make a point of scanning. Now, I read a lot about kidney cancer. In the past 20 or 30 years, it has gone from almost no kidney cancer discovered incidentally – “incidentally” means discovering cancer early without causing symptoms – because they are looking for something else, or the person is a lunatic and has decided to get scanned.

Don’t get a CT scan, get an MRI, because of the radiation, unless, your doctor is an a-hole and insists on a CT scan. If you’re in your 50s, you can go ahead and get a CT scan because radiation is a lifetime dose thing. So, radiation in your 50s is not as harmful as radiation you get in your 20s.

If you get radiation, and then if you get cancer in 30 years, it is worse 30 years after your 30s than 30 years after your 50s, when a bunch of other stuff might kill you.

[End of recorded material]


Rick Rosner

American Television Writer


Rick Rosner

Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Editor-in-Chief, In-Sight Publishing


In-Sight Publishing


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License and Copyright

In-Sight Publishing  by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at and


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