Satti, we’re definitely on the same page, literally and figuratively.

Capitalism has a lot to do with many of America’s ills, and with this profiteering, materialistic mindset that pervades everything and corrodes basic human decency.

Since my stepmom was diagnosed with advanced breast cancer, I’ve gone down a rabbit hole of cancer-related services on this side of the Atlantic because I want to try and help her by remote. In short, I’m looking for tricks and tips that can make her treatment less awful, more bearable. What I found instead was an industry ready to suck patients dry: the cancer-industrial complex. And no, I’m not remotely surprised, just furious. Thankfully, she lives in Paris therefore she needn’t worry about being getting the best treatment available, including — oddly enough — at the American hospital. (American by name only, it’s a private not-for-profit hospital.)

Your self-discipline is very familiar to me — I live on one meal a day and have done so for almost 10 years now, initially because I went through extreme precarious times as a journalist in Portugal and the only thing I could “save on” was food. It turns out it was good training for my American life and sudden hardship brought on by depression and my resulting inability to work for several years.

As an aside, we really don’t need to always be stuffing our mouths with food 24/7. Personally, I don’t want to spend my every waking hour digesting, but hey, that’s me. Also, when you fast, your food ends up tasting amazing. A simple tomato (or an egg, as you pointed out) becomes a symphony for your taste buds…

Thank you for reading and leaving me a note, Satti. I love it that you end every message with “Salam”, just as kurt gasbarra ends his with “Shalom.” Beautiful words, both of them.


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