When I was a teenager I had a parakeet named Fernando. He was named after the superstar Los Angeles Dodger pitcher of Hispanic descent, Fernando Valenzuela, one of my favorite baseball players at the time. I got the pet from my Grandfather, a large man from Iowa, burly in size and muscle, who in the most endearing, almost Tuesdays With Morrie way, raised these fragile birds in his work room. I hand picked Fernando, a white petite parakeet who made the cutest noise when I was choosing. Fernando was one of my first pets, and still one of my favorites.
A few years in, Fernando seemed to have some health issues. His energy was at an all-time low and he stopped eating all together. I also noticed he had some sort of growth on his head, and it seemed to be getting larger by the day. We immediately took him to the vet, who let us know that Fernando had a brain tumor. His quality of life would only get worse, so he suggested we put Fernando down. I cried and cried, but my Mom agreed and that was the last time I saw Fernando, but sadly, not the last time I saw brain tumors.
A few years ago, when the doctor informed me I had three on my midbrain, an inoperable spot smack dab in the middle of my head, I remembered Fernando. I knew I had more of an immune system than my little flying friend, but I only knew this diagnosis as a death sentence because of him. I assumed eventually a growth would appear on top of my noggin, like a built in dunce cap, and then I would die. Just like the bird. I knew so little about brain tumors and, in turn, so little about my future.
The reason the tumors were detected is even sadder than the story of my first pet. I had a ringing in my ear that wouldn’t go away, so I visited a doctor after hours searching WebMD and deciding I was going to die. He assured me that I wasn’t (yet), and shot me up with cortisone. That made the ringing disappear quickly. But since my doctor knew I couldn’t say no to a deal, he set me up with an MRI, because the ringing would allow insurance to pay for it. He explained that it’s important to have your brain scanned, so we can have the results for any future issues, god forbid they appear. Like the before and after pictures you see in Jenny Craig commercials, but for your brain. I didn’t see any harm in saving a few bucks on a procedure, so I went for it. When he called me 5 days later in a somber tone saying I had to go in, I immediately regretted using that coupon.
Fernando or not, I’m doing really well now. Over the past 4 years, the tumors haven’t grown or multiplied. I get them checked every few months, because if anything scary is detected, I’ll be sent in for chemotherapy and radiation, then my blog would get REAL exciting. I’ve learned a whole lot about brain tumors, symptoms to look for and steps to take to get checked - and I try and share them as much as I can with people.
When fellow podcaster Bryan Bishop (known as Bald Bryan from the Adam Carolla Show) reached out to me about our similarities in life, which included brain tumors, I couldn’t have been more excited to hear about the work he was doing with the National Brain Tumor Society. His experiences with the affliction has been more intense than mine, and has turned his story into a NY Times best-seller. He’s been a real inspiration for me. He also brought me on-board as a Committee member for the Society’s annual Brain Tumor Walk and I’m thrilled to be raising money for the event.
The Los Angeles Brian Tumor Walk is on August 24th at Exposition Park here in LA, and we’re raising money for awareness and research. The work that this charity is doing is so impressive, especially as someone who sat and cried for weeks thinking that I had to immediately figure out what was going on my tombstone when I left the Dr’s office (btw it “Zsa Zsa Gabor outlived me”). There are options and treatments and prevention. So many things you should know about, especially since everyone has someone in their life who has battled, or is battling, brain tumors. With the way the world is going, with air pollution and burning hot cell phones placed directly on your brain, we should probably learn more. It can’t hurt. Sorry to scare you.
So here’s the thing: I’m mostly joking about how Phil Collins ruined Hook or baiting Tom Hanks’ kid into a rap battle on Twitter, I know this. But I’m asking you, give money to this cause. Especially if you’re a fan of our podcast. We never ask for dough, so I’m asking for it now. All you have to do, NO MATTER THE AMOUNT YOU CAN GIVE, is go to this site:
…and type in “Team Jensen” under Donate To Participant or Team. Listen, I picked the name before I realized it sounded like we’re all on Wild N’ Crazy Kids together. So, let it slide. Then just click “Donate To Me,” and you can leave WHATEVER you want. It’s tax deductible and it leaves you good karma. That’s a fact.
I never thought I would be in that doctor’s office being told I had brain tumors. It just seemed so impossible. I showed no symptoms or reasons to even think it was in the cards. And now I’m surrounded by an amazing support system of doctors, friends, and now this charity filled other patients and caregivers. Let’s make sure others can have these things. Please try your hardest to donate. Also don’t get a parakeet for a pet. They don’t stop chirping and it’s kind of annoying.
What’s up, everyone! How have you been? Did we ever find the plane?
With that, I am overjoyed to announce that my book SCIENCE…FOR HER! comes out NOVEMBER 4, 2014, published by Scribner.
Science…For Her! is a science textbook written by a lady (me) for other ladies (you, the Spice…
But! I like to have fun.
Earlier today, I posted this BuzzFeed parody on BuzzFeed, because I wanted to create a black hole on the internet. Within 15 minutes, it was deleted and I was banned from the site, because it was “mean-spirited,” according to their community editor.
Thankfully, “The Story Of Egypt’s Revolution In Jurassic Park Gifs” remains available to the world.
I love Joe Veix
Person stalking me, responds to Wilfredo (I think). If you see him call the police. #serious
Hi guys, sorry I wasn’t more specific before, I’ve been running around. Here come the full story (quickly):
In 2004 or so I met this person briefly after an improv show I had in Caracas, he immediately started emailing me and going to shows I had all around town. As a performer I, of course, promote my shows so anyone can find me anytime. At first it seemed normal, I even replied some emails he had sent me, no different than other people who had sent me emails, the improv show I was in was pretty big in my city (400 people venue sold out three times a week six to nine months every year for several years) and I was receiving a lot of fan mails and friend requests online I had decided that it would be good karma to respond to everyone and at least say thank you and remember their names. This was no different than many other emails… for a while.
Later, near the time in which I decided to come to NY, this person contacting me and showing up in places had become a problem. He seemed to need more time and attention, to come to every show and to ask me things like “Do you have a car here?” and “can I get a ride?” and then “Why are you mad at me?” “Can we talk?” (this man is a stranger) he would also consistently ask me out on drinks or ask me to talk aside after my shows, he’d wait alone outside for a long time as I was picking up my wardrobe or getting out of make up, etc. Then my theater friends consistently had to scort me out. I was directing a weekend play, acting in a matinee musical and doing my improv shows late at night at the time and he would show up in a lot/most of these events. He came to shows and expect me to address him afterwards every time. He would mumble nonsense and ask me out over and over despite my repetitive rejections and literally telling him he needed to stop coming to so many shows because, frankly, he was starting to freak me out. He would also send me an overwhelming amount of emails on a daily bases, so many I had to close my old email account.
The first time I told him to stop I felt like a dick, you know “Oh there’s a fan, I’m no one really but here I am telling him to go away instead of being thankful, I’m a pretentious crap” so I was nice for a long time, more than I was comfortable for, but I finally got the point I had to say something, over and over again… At first it felt like he thought ALSO “she’s a dick, I can’t believe it” and I felt guilty but he wasn’t stopping, in fact he did MORE and it was too much and very scary.
I finally moved to NYC and he kept contacting me, at first very angry that I had moved and calling me a traitor. Thankfully it slowed down a LOT and I lost contact with him for almost two years but two years ago I started receiving emails from him again. All is if it had never stopped and his anger got worse. I think he might have thought we had a back and forth relationship and me not answering was the same as answering. He found me on Facebook. He would open profiles, email me something really hateful and scary, threats (as if we’ve had a love relationship for years and now i was in bad terms) and then close the profiles, I blocked I don’t know how many of his profiles and changed my name and security options on my Facebook account. Based on some of his emails I have reasons to believe he came to NY in 2010 or 2011 and I was terrified. I got a pepper spray and warned the Theatre and the police. I never saw him but he made it sound as if he was here.
As I was looking for ways to let him know he needed to stop I remembered that MAYBE we had a friend in common… It wasn’t much but it was enough of a link, I have a friend who’s brother might have gone to college with this stalker. So I emailed him and said “I don’t know you well or if you keep in touch with this person but tell him I am contacting the authorities and he must stop.” The friend denied any contact with him but the stalking stopped either way. Until last week.
He emailed me at my YouTube account. There are some comments on my videos that are from him. He emailed me about 10 times now and said, amongst other things, that he is good now and that he is not “like John Lennon’s crazy killer” or like Selena’s killer, or like that crazy guy in The Bodyguard. In a second email he said he wasn’t going to kill me. Then… he referenced not killing me again.
I am not sure where this person is right now, I don’t know if he’s in Finland, Venezuela, NY or China. I only know that every time it seems he goes away he comes back saying scarier and scarier things. Mentioning he’s not gonna kill me has put me on the edge and that’s why I need your guys’ eyes.
I’m gathering all the emails from him and filing with the police again, probably a restraining order to serve him though restraining orders are served only if the person approaches me and, in this case, that I know of, most of the contact is online through different profiles he opens and closes right away. Sneaky/tricky.
This person is psychotic and this has not stopped and seem to only have gotten worse. He lives in an alternate reality and he is obsessed with me and thinks we are “The same.” The contact is fewer but really intense and the things he says are very scary.
If you see him report him please. I believe this person to be very dangerous. Thank you guys
I love Kickstarter. I think that’s clear to people who know me by now? I love it. There’s a dude named Brad Muir and he works at Double Fine and I love the games they make, so much. But before Kickstarter, every time a Double Fine game came out I was a little worried it would be their last,…
It’s funny to me that they used that quote as the header…
I found this fella today tied to a bench in Prospect Park. I was taking a jog, and stopped to get him some much needed lunch and a bath. We visited the vet (Animal Kind Veterinary Hospital, 365 7th Ave Brooklyn - they were amazing and so informative) and got him all checked out. His name is Bentley according to his microchip.
He is very friendly and well-behaved, though he needs a little help on the leash. Part of that is probably that he’s only about two years old (vet estimate). We got his shots, some antibiotics for the wear and tear that comes from living on a bench for a few days, and some dog food to get him fattened up. His collar was traded in for a harness (way easier to walk).
He weighs 52.6 lbs, and he’ll get bigger as he eats properly. Right now he’s napping on his new bed, and he’s so freaking cute and wonderful.
But I can’t have a dog right now. As much as I would love to keep him it wouldn’t be fair to him, and it would be irresponsible of me considering my current employment situation (recently fired, not quite freelancing). I’ve contacted Shawn Casey of animal rescue but they are currently full. If any one wants this friendly guy please let me know. You can email me at email@example.com. I will answer any questions you might have. Until then, we’re going to bop along and probably go on some jogs together. Also I’m going to fatten him up properly.
It’s been a long day for me, and a terrible week for Bentley. I hope he gets really healthy and happy. I don’t know about fate, but I think this was supposed to happen today.
We going straight to (when I roll into the) the Wild Wild West (when I stroll into the)
We going straight to (when I bounce into the) the Wild Wild West
We going straight to the Wild Wild West
We going straight to the Wild Wild West
I want to tell you to not vote for Romney for a lot of reasons.
I want to remind you how devastatingly dishonest he’s been regarding his own finances. How he basically committed a felony in 2009 which is why he won’t release his tax returns for that year.
How he lied blatantly about the auto…