As the chemotherapy nurse was telling me the order of the drugs she was going to give me through the IV, I had a number of responses: “That one makes sure my port is unclogged,” “Oh, that one gets me loopy,” “That one is the steroid,” etc. But the comment that had the biggest effect on my nurse was, “That’s the hardcore drug, right there!” Spoken with a silly smile, her response was, “We don’t say hardcore.”
A number of thooughts went through my head over the next 10 seconds:
- Is that a word only used for street drugs?
- Why did I use THAT word?
- Am I white trash for reals?
- What is the meaning of hardcore to the medical community?
- Does it not apply to music as well?
- What does this word truely mean? Die hard, hardline, extreme, radical, uncomprimising.
I then thought of the band KoRn, where the lead singer just SCREAMED into the mic. And Iggy Pop when he cut himself with beer bottles while he was singing on stage.
“What about pharmeceuticals?” I thought. “Hardcore totally DOES apply to to these. Heroin: the drug that kills you even when you stop using. Taxotere: the one that makes my chest feel closed, so I can’t fully inhale. The one that makes my hair fall out and my skin have sores all over – even inside my mouth and nose! Yes. Hardcore is the proper use of the word here.”
After that really short train of thought I immediately replied to the nurse, “Well, I mean that it’s the drug I blame everything on”.
And then I thought, “Oh, she meant that only 40 year olds say the word hardcore”.