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Angelina Jolie’s Boobs

May 14, 2013

ImageAngelina Jolie published an op-ed piece in today’s New York Times discussing her medical choice to have a preventative bilateral mastectomy to reduce her risk of developing breast cancer. Evidently she carries one of the two genes known to greatly increase the chances of a woman (or man) developing breast and ovarian cancer, and she did not want to die from breast cancer and leave her children motherless, a loss she could understand because her own mother died after a ten-year battle with the disease.

Good for her. That’s a brave choice, not least because her body is her art.

It’s obvious what I would have to say about her decision: to put life and motherhood ahead of anything else; to seek out information and act on it; and (perhaps most difficult) to go public with the most private of choices. I think she’s awesome on all counts.

I wonder how many children will grow to adulthood with living mothers because of her op-ed. I would have gone to see her next movie anyway (I was already a fan) but I’ll definitely enjoy it more for her having taken this very public stance.

I also wonder whether Jennifer Aniston is sitting around in the privacy of her own house enjoying a cup of coffee that tastes just a little bit better than usual this morning. We’ll never know. There’s no way to know. I certainly don’t want to know. It’s a horrible thought, and by all accounts, Jennifer Aniston is a lovely person who would never think such a thing. In fact, you might think I deserve having had breast cancer for thinking it, which leads to. . .

What I really wonder is this:  On the rare occasions where I have unequivocally found myself out of favor with people, I wonder, are they thinking that kind of mean-spirited thought about me? Sometimes, I think they might be. I get a glimmer. It’s a sucker punch in the gut, ugh, followed my the most blissful wave of self-righteousness because I know I’m better than that.

Props to you, Ms. Jolie.

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2 Comments
  1. Scott Thomson permalink

    A wonderful piece until you start to wonder about the Jennfier Aniston. Then you remind us that Angelina is less attractive to her husband (and all men?) now and that Ms. Aniston just might be gloating. It may be true but you denigrate all three parties with the suggestion. We can all be mean-spirited at times whether by nature or in a fit of pique. It doesn’t necessarily mean we don’t care for the other person. If it makes you feel better, by all means, feel self-righteous. But you ARE, usually, better than that.

    And yes, props to Ms. Jolie. Boobs are sexy but so is a woman of courage and strength.

  2. Good on you Scott for calling me on the mean spiritedness of it. You are right, of course.
    That was actually the point of the post. We like our victims to come packaged up wrapped in “sweet” with a healthy side order of “helpless” and “innocent” and when they refuse to wear that outfit then we go looking for blame to pin on them.

    Life isn’t like that, but one of the things that cancer patients, or other people who have had a dose of bad luck, have to deal with is the lurking thought that it’s somehow Karma.

    Cancer isn’t part of Karma.

    I might rewrite the post to make that point less subtly.

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