Bladder Cancer, Dunkin Donuts, My Birthday and Other Random Thoughts

dunkin donuts gluten free

What does a blogger do when he’s got tons of things on his mind but not sure if any of them are worthy of a full blog post?

He throws them all against a wall and hopes that some of them stick.

Here’s my Friday stream of consciousness…

– It’s my birthday tomorrow. The older I get, the more my birthday becomes less a time of celebration and more a time of reflection. And as a reflect, I realize I am one lucky son of a gun. An amazing wife, two phenomenal kids, I work for myself, I run this wonderful gluten-free community. What more could a guy ask for?

– While I will reflect, I will also be sure to celebrate…and then some. Isn’t that what life is all about?

– Today, I am getting the most amazing early birthday present. I am having a long tube stuck up my urethra and into my bladder to check for my bladder cancer. Yes, I’m awake the whole time. It’s a wonderfully intimate few minutes with my urologist who performs this procedure once a year since my bladder cancer diagnosis in 2007 (and again in 2008). And thankfully, it’s a gift that keeps on giving as I’ll be peeing broken glass for the next few days. Happy Birthday to me!!

– A quick shout-out to my original urologist who diagnosed me. In our first meeting, I asked him why he became a urologist. Without missing a beat, he said “I love penises.” My kind of humor. My kind of doctor.

– Dunkin Donuts officially announced they are releasing a gluten-free donut and muffin yesterday and the gluten-free world went absolutely ape sh*t. It’s not a cure for cancer folks. It’s not the second coming. It’s a donut. Actually, it’s a donut with 27 ingredients and 22 grams of fat. And before I get accused of being too negative, I get the fact that choice is good for many celiacs. And that there is a convenience to being able to grab a donut. Honestly, I see both sides of it. But I have two concerns:

  1. I am more about the disease than I am about the food. I’ve been consistent in this from day one. And this kind of unhealthy crap is just not good for celiacs. Period. Just because it’s gluten free doesn’t mean we should be eating it if we want to heal. I don’t want to feel “normal”. I want to feel good.
  2. Here are a few of the headlines from around the globe yesterday: “Gluten Free Donuts for Dunkin Donuts. The Next Trend for Fast Food Chains”, “Dunkin’ Donuts Jumps on Gluten-Free Trend”. “Dunkin’ to Jump on the Gluten-Free Bandwagon”. You see where I’m going with this? I am all about celiac awareness. The “trend” does not help the cause.

Just give me a second while I climb off my soapbox. It’s a long way down.

– I spent Wednesday day night in New York City and am heading back there tomorrow with Mrs. Dude. There is no one I’d rather be with and no where else I’d rather be.

– I’ve had four breweries send me their samples in the past week. Blogging has its perks.

– I went to a Russian Vodka Bar in the city on Wednesday. They had over 100 flavors of infused vodka, including the following: beef, chicken, carrot and their best seller “bacon and chocolate”. I repeat…bacon & chocolate vodka.

Alright…I’m outta here. It’s almost Xanax time. Yes, you better believe I take a drug before my procedure. Does it help? It doesn’t hurt.

Happy Friday folks!!

Oh…and I have to finish this off with the best Birthday song EVER. Enjoy.

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53 thoughts on “Bladder Cancer, Dunkin Donuts, My Birthday and Other Random Thoughts”

  1. You had me at :” bacon & chocolate vodka”
    3 of my favorite foods.

    Actually, that’s not true….you got my attention at : “tube up urethra”

    Sorry you have to go through this yucky procedure, but ever-so-grateful there is one to monitor your status, my friend. (when I get my entire GI tract –both ways–scoped and biopsied in September, remind me I said this? )

    Focus on your birthday–you are here, alive and kicking–and able to celebrate it and so, I celebrate YOU! Happy birthday, Dude!!!

    I agree–NYC is one of my fave places in the world. I am looking forward to seeing you guys there in August. 🙂

    Many blessings and many more birthdays to celebrate, GD. xx

      1. If it makes you feel any better, GD, I have a friend whose better half suffered 2 bouts of bladder cancer. As he is older, they have to check him every 3 months! I am really happy you only have to suffer through this once a year. Brave man, you are!

        Go to Risoterria in NY. I was there a month ago and the food is just the best. Fabulous breadsticks, even better risotto and a great selection of gf beers….they even have Green’s.

        Happy Birthday to you and have a wonderful time in the city! : )

        BTW…I do not care a fig about DD’s gf crap. I hate their coffee, never go there and certainly won’t be stopping by to purchase donuts in plastic wrap. Yuck!

  2. Honestly, I have two thoughts about Dunkin Doughnuts offering something that is gluten-free:

    1.) with every company that does that, I get treated a little less like a pariah when I mention I’m gluten-free–there are still a lot of people who want to tell us, “it’s all in your head.”

    2.) My job requires long drives, and I like to travel. The more this kind of thing happens, the more it’s possible that I can just get-up-and-go in the morning, without having to worry about what I’ll eat that day.

    Do I think we should be eating this? “No.” But, I’m glad they’re doing it.

    (And Happy Birthday!)

  3. That video! Hahahahahah my fiancés birthday was yesterday, can’t wait to show him. Sorry about the tube. 🙁 Have a wonderful birthday reflecting and celebrating. You have a lot to be grateful for!

  4. I love your posts … Happy Birthday and thank you for giving me a gift on your birthday!

    This is my mantra too:
    “I don’t want to feel “normal”. I want to feel good”.

      1. that sounds better than the quote I had picked out a few years ago for mine:

        “I TOLD you as$$#@*es I was sick!”

        🙂 🙂

  5. Happy birthday, Dude – from another member of the joint cancer-celiac club! I get the whole reflection thing… I will celebrate my first post-cancer birthday (44) this August so I’m sitting right where you’re at. When you’re in NYC, if you’ve never been to Risotteria, make sure you get there. (I recommend the red velvet cupcakes.)

    The only thing I have to say about the Dunkin Donuts move is that since nothing there should be a regular habit (except for, perhaps, the black coffee), the fact that it’s still adulterated unnatural sh*t doesn’t bother me. But yeah… the “trend” thing. If hipster-trendies put as much effort into whole-eating as we celiacs put into eliminating gluten, there would be no need for “trend” diets and we might be taken more seriously as a group. My thoughts for what they’re worth.

  6. Happy birthday, GD. You know I think there’s a link with the bladder cancer diagnosis and celiac, so it warms my heart to hear you’re keeping yourself healthy and up-to-date on check, check, rechecks. I’m also thrilled to see you summitting the soapbox regarding Dunkin’ Donuts. No, no, no. I don’t care about the convenience factor, etc., that stuff is poison. No one should be eating DD, especially people with digestive disorders. But, each to their own. BTW, Pure Food and Wine in NYC is awesome. My daughter (she also has celiac) and I went there before heading to the Barclay Center in Brooklyn for the first stop of the Rolling Stones 50th anniversary tour. We had a blast. Yes, life is good, especially when you make the effort to feel good.
    Sending happy birthday wishes your way.
    PS: Looking forward to the end of the “bacon in everything” phase. How about beet infused vodka? Much healthier.

  7. Happy birthday, and huge round of applause for taking care of yourself and following up your bladder cancer regularly. I can relate to your procedure as I am an OR nurse and have been in many urologic procedures. My fun was getting yet another colonoscopy this year:)
    Hang in there!

  8. Dude-

    Happy Birthday. Drink heavily and don’t worry that you may be ejecting glass from a place it should never be.

    Jersey Girl
    Dwight: [After he didn’t tip the sub man] Why tip someone for a job I’m capable of doing myself? I can deliver food. I can drive a taxi. I can, and do, cut my own hair. I did, however, tip my urologist, because I am unable to pulverize my own kidney stones.
    “The Office”

  9. Happy Birthday GD! Sorry to hear about your procedure today. However, your quote from one of your urologists is a hoot. “I love penises.” Thanks for a good laugh this morning.

    Thanks for all your work informing as many as you can about our debilitating disease. And thanks for not giving up, we need you!

    If you drink enough Harvester beer, you may not feel any of that glass.

    My best to you from Aloha land.

  10. Hey Dude, serious question: do you drink any and all vodka? I’ve read conflicting things about vodka and have always just stayed away from it. Any advice?!
    P.s. happy birthday? Hope you have a great day with your family.

    1. Anna,
      I am sure the Dude will answer you as soon as he is back from
      his sojourn to NYC for his doctor visit and his Bday celebration, but I can honestly say this to you in the meantime:

      Vodka is safe for people with celiac and gluten intolerance
      I would not steer you wrong, I promise.

      I drink distilled spirits and wine and I am considered by my Gastro Doctor be a “sensitive celiac” -meaning– I will have an adverse reaction to trace gluten–and no distilled spirits have ever bothered me (gluten-wise)

      From the Univ. of Chicago Celiac Center

      “Are distilled beverages made with a prohibited grain (wheat, rye, barley) safe for celiacs?

      Only specific gluten-free beers (Bard’s Tale, New Grist, Green’s, Redbridge, to name a few) are appropriately gluten free. As for pure spirits, (vodka, gin, scotch), the distillation process makes these beverages safe because the protein is removed. However, flavored spirits may contain malt, and should be avoided.”

      hope this helps!

  11. So this morning before I headed off to my own appointment I wrote an entire epic post, hit the button and got an error and the whole thing was lost. And there was much swearing in my house.

    Anyway… I hope everything goes well with your appointment and that you enjoy the rest of your stay in NYC. And that you enjoy the whole rest of your year. 😀

    I have mixed feelings about the donut myself. I don’t think it is healthy, especially with the number of ingredients in it. That said, I do think that they made a step in the right direction (unlike some other places who attempt gluten free) by making and packaging the donut in a gluten free facility. And DD isn’t responsible for the headlines full of “trend this” and “bandwagon that” that make them look like dumbasses to us. They’re making an honest effort that will keep some 5 year old from feeling excluded this summer, or let some teenager just go hang out with their friends favorite hangout instead of staying home because they can’t take one more time watching everyone indulge. No, it isn’t good for us but neither are donuts at all. (I say this as someone who discovered donuts locally a week ago and am as excited as a 2 year old who just found out how to get into the cookie jar. LOL!)

    Lastly, bacon & chocolate vodka? There are moments that I really wonder why I don’t drink any more. This morning reading that was one of those moments.

  12. Happy belated birthday Dude! I am just seeing this now. Hope that your procedure went well, and that you enjoyed fine dining in NYC (everytime I travel there I feel like I am in Celiac heaven because there are so many Celiac options!) I’ll pass on buying you a dozen DD GF donuts…

  13. Hm, I wouldn’t have pegged you for a Cancer. Here’s my post for gluten-free Cancers; you can decide for yourself whether the stars got it right. Regardless…happy belated birthday!

    I 100% agree the “trend” coverage of Dunkin’ Donuts is obnoxious, but I still think it’s cool that they’re doing it. Wish they’d gone in for my favorite chocolate-chip muffin instead of blueberry, though (guess they didn’t want to sacrifice the single ingredient that actually can be considered good for you). Adalaide—really well put.

    I hope everything went okay with your procedure and that you had (or are still having?) a fantastic time in the city.

        1. Now this is a trend that I could get behind! If I put flax in my muffins I get to call them health food and eat two a day right?

  14. So glad to hear the tests came back clean!!!! And happy belated birthday – I for one, am incredibly blessed because you were born! 🙂

  15. I have a horrible admission to make. I was watching cartoons last night and the news comes on right as they are over. I always turn the news off because it is too damn depressing but caught the beginning headlines. Apparently we are getting a DD up in SLC. I immediately squealed with delight. Then I remembered that I don’t eat donuts or drink coffee anymore. 🙁 I know I’m healthier but it is mildly depressing that something this exciting happens after it has no real meaning for me. (My husband fears I’ll fall off the wagon and start driving an hour for coffee every day! 😀 )

  16. An article that basically mimics my feelings every time someone tells me about a new Gluten Free food (That was never healthy when it wasn’t GF)!!!

    My Mom always gets excited to buy “New” snacks, Chips and Crisps every time she sees the word GF on the label. I just cannot convince her that most plain Potato Chips and other deep fried crispy products have been GF that doesn’t turn them healthy! So please don’t supply me with them (or my kids) just because they are now emblazoned with those 2 words!

    GF foods used to be in Health food stores because they were FREE of chemicals, color and preservatives …now not so much. Too much of them are filled with the same crap that are in the Standard American Diet (SAD) I do pride myself on eating healthier than most people because I have had to…too many things triggered a response initially. But now GF is mainstream and I am on the fence if it is a good thing or not.

    Yes I admit that when I first went GF 15 1/2 years ago after my Dx…I had to explain to many a restaurant staff (even in foreign countries) what gluten free meant and now everyone has heard of it…But unlike Lisa who feels less like a Pariah…I realize just as many people still do not know what Celiac Disease is, because the new trend of people living GF have nothing to do with this disorder. The larger percentage of people now eating that way (like most of Hollywood) are not Celiacs so as soon as I mentionI need GF they all think it is elective, or optional…until I say I am Celiac and they often still say “What’s that?” Even if they said “Oh yeah I know what GF is!”.

    Sad, we were never taken seriously enough for years and now that so many Hollywood stars have elected to eat GF everyone knows what that is …but still don’t necessarily know what Celiac Disease is.

    I used to dream Dr Alessio Fasano would find that cure…or another doctor. Or even a treatment like a supplement to enzymes that we could take…but now I don’t believe they ever will because too many people are making money on the GF bandwagon!

    I hope you are well with the Bladder Cancer! I am now going through a Kidney / Bladder pain nightmare that feels like stones or UTI. No amount of bloodwork, Urine or CT shows a thing and no one can tell me what ails me. It feels to me, like the 10 years of undiagnosed Celiac Disease….according to all the doctors “It’s all in my head!”

    Be well!


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Who I am. And who I'm not.

Who I am. And who I'm not.

I AM someone who's been gluten-free since 2007 due to a diagnosis of severe celiac disease. I'm someone who can steer you in the right direction when it comes to going gluten-free. And I'm someone who will always give you the naked truth about going gluten free.

I AM NOT someone who embraces this gluten-free craziness. I didn’t find freedom, a better life or any of that other crap when I got diagnosed. With all due respect to Hunter S. Thompson, I found fear and loathing of an unknown world. But if I can share my wisdom, tell my stories and make the transition easier on you, I’ve done my job.

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