Gary's Chevy SSR and the definition of practical

I won't lie; I teared up when Gary signed the papers for this Chevy SSR yesterday.

"Your wife is more excited than you are," the salesman marveled. "Usually it's the guy who's crying 'cause the wife won't go for it."

It wasn't an impulse purchase; it was the sudden and unexpected realization of a dream he's had for years. He's wanted one since they came out in 2004. Priced and looked and Googled them a thousand times.

In Bald in the Land of Big Hair, my memoir about how I got my first book published while undergoing chemotherapy for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, I wrote a lot about Gary's dedication to our family and his role as my Rock of Gibraltar co-survivor. My favorite review of the book called it "a love letter to an extraordinary caregiver." And the book doesn't begin to cover how he's stood behind me through the feast and famine of my career as an author.

Beyond the basic fact that Gary deserves this -- and he's earned it -- is the basic philosophy that's guided our lives since cancer barged in and kicked us in the head. The most impractical, wasteful and foolish thing a person can do with his or her life is to not live it.


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