My Uncle Carlton died recently. Lung cancer. He was a professional fireman. Doctors think breathing in all the toxic fumes of burning stuff caused it. How about that? You dedicate your life to valiant, even heroic efforts to save lives, and you lose your life for it, even though you don't get killed in a blaze or collapse.
In jollier news, Christmas Carol has ended, and it was a positive event. It was a joy getting to know lots of folks, reconnecting with folks I knew from beforehand, getting an actual audience for our efforts, and getting a polar bear.
The actress who played my wife and I had one sequence in the show where we simply hung out on set and looked like we'd been shopping. So while onstage we'd quietly improvise discussions about the contents of our prop gifts, and one thing we often mentioned was an inflatable polar bear, in homage to my friend Dr. Brain's huge inflatable polar bear that his kids venerate every Christmas. So on the last night of the show she gave me a plush polar bear. Since another gift we often cited was figgy pudding, I've named the bear Figgy. Yay Figgy! And yay Becca for giving him to me! And for being a good sport about playing my wife.