What is this blog about? Laugh, Think, and Cry...

My blog is for you and for me. I hope you find some inspiration here. I follow a "laugh, think, and cry" pattern based upon the following quote from Jimmy V (Jim Valvano, former N.C. St. basketball coach) during his final days of battling cancer in 1993. Btw, It it is quite OK for you to cry in the laugh section, think in the cry section, and laugh in the think section... :) Click here if you want to view the entire Jimmy V speech.

“To me, there are three things we all should do every day. We should do this every day of our lives. Number one is laugh. You should laugh every day. Number two is think. You should spend some time in thought. And number three is, you should have your emotions moved to tears, could be happiness or joy. But think about it. If you laugh, you think, and you cry, that's a full day. That's a heck of a day. You do that seven days a week; you're going to have something special.”


A lot has happened since I began this blog last fall. When I selected Jimmy Valvano’s “Laugh, Think, and Cry” speech to use as model of inspiration for my theme I had no idea that cancer would strike my family like it has in the last year. My older sister Susan recently buried her husband Glenn E. Hall (49) after an incredibly grueling and difficult battle versus a very rare and aggressive cancer called alveolar rhabdomyosacrcoma. It began attacking his brain last fall in what initially appeared to be a sinus infection. There was no indication to think it was anything else. By the time it was detected it had left a trail of destruction of irreparable damage.

My younger sister DeAnn currently battles ovarian cancer. She was diagnosed on October 5th, 2010. Her fight continues.

On September 13th, 2011 my beautiful queen Stephanie picked me up from the gym after a long workout. Moments later I learned that my wife of 25 years, my best friend, the mother of our four amazing children, confirmed one of our worst fears. Stephanie has breast cancer. We held each other tight and the tears flowed. Our world has been rocked yet we are certain we can and will still be standing after it is all said and done.

Stephanie and I have decided to share her battle. We have been preaching and living the word “challenge” over the past few years. Our lifestyle has changed and we have been blessed to meet so many wonderful people through our running adventures. This is something that would be impossible to keep hidden so we choose to open up and invite others to come along for this “run” with us.

Stephanie and our family now face something much more daunting than a mountain marathon or an Ironman triathlon. We understand that many are confused as to why this has happened. We get it that some people don’t know what to say or how to react to the news. It’s ok. We have accepted it for what it is. Cancer is here, it is real, and it is us. Stephanie has it and so our family has it. We are a team. One for all and all for one. We are fighting to save our Mommy, our friend, and my wife. Early detection and current medical technology coupled with faith, love, and hope give us a fighting chance, a chance that not all cancer patients receive. We are grateful for this. Stephanie is young, strong, and tougher than nails. Our family and the doctors are doggedly determined that we are going to defeat this foe.

We plan to use this opportunity to become stronger, better people. As the storm clouds gather and the rain comes pouring down as it most assuredly will, we hope you can find the rays of sunlight with us and in some way become a stronger person yourself. The goal of my blog was to inspire and be inspired. Stephanie shares that same wish as she tells her story... stephsfight.blogspot.com

Tick tock...

Tuesday, October 18, 2011


Goal:  Finish the Ford Ironman Florida Triathlon, November 5, 2011, Panama
Current Weight: 189
Ironman Goal Weight: A lean, strong, healthy 189
Current Training: Final “build” week—it’s almost here!

LAUGH: Shake Your Fist 

I love chocolate. Ok, I just lied. I LUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUV chocolate (and sweets in general). When I got my paws on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory as a kid I remember reading and rereading the part about Augustus Gloop and turning completely brown with envy! Can you imagine drinking from a chocolate river? Can you imagine swimming in it?! Pure heaven, at least until you drowned or get sucked up a pipe…

I pretty much like just about any kind of chocolate from chips to truffles to covered candies and nuts and just about any kind of cookie. I will eat dark, milk, white, bar, slivered, frozen, melted, whatever. I will eat from a jar, from a bag, from a can, and any kind of brownie except for the ExLax variety.  Bring on the brown! I will eat chocolate at any time of day or night and it seems to taste better when it is forbidden. Chocolate may be my favorite food group and nutrient. I think it is just that good. Furthermore, I consider chocolate milk to be a Top 5 all-time world invention (also included in this list is air conditioning, basketball, and the wheel).

Growing up as a metabolic freak (the skinny boy who could inhale chocolate by the pound and slurp it down by the gallon with no waistline consequences), I could and would consume chocolaty things in large quantities. There were no rules, no discipline. The only limit was time and quantity. Boy, things sure changed in my late 20’s when I was no longer able to eat whatever I wanted in portions suited more for a large barn yard animal than a suddenly sedentary slug. No longer could I bake a chocolate cake and eat half of it in one sitting (I did this many times in 8th and 9th grade—hey, just pull it out of the oven, poke holes in it with a fork, drizzle powdered icing over the top, slice it up and grab the chocolate milk and turn on Hogan’s Heroes, yum!). Nope, I now have to pick my spots and can’t just eat the manna from heaven whenever I want. Oh, such torture…

So as you can see, I am NOT in denial (“Hi, my name is Steve and I’m a chocoholic”). So how do I deal with this addiction? I simply “shake my fist”. Huh? That’s right. I look at the beautiful brown stuff and transform it into my enemy. I let my imagination run wild. The chocolate will grow horns, wield spears, and even point firearms at me. In a sometimes frightening moment, it becomes the devil himself (my favorite cake=Devil’s Food)! The chocolate is trying to hurt me and is attempting to keep me from becoming an ironman. It must be stopped! So I challenge it and even mock it. This is one time when I approve of trash talk. I announce my superiority over it and look it squarely in the eyes and “shake my fist” at it! I scold it and in no uncertain terms I declare with boldness that I will not let it defeat me! During such a confrontation, my daughters roll their eyes and say unspeakable things about their crazy father before exiting the room.

Now, do I win the battle every time? Of course not. Sometimes I immediately roll over on my back and go into full submission (Lori Kassing’s brownies, Mint Oreos, Symphony bars, the list goes on). But, the “shake my fist” strategy has helped me to win many battles with the brown stuff. It is one big reason why I’m 189 instead of 249. "Shaking my fist" has helped me to discipline myself so that my body is now in position to become an ironman. So, when the brown temptation comes as it most surely will, simply shake your fist and come off the conqueror… J


  1. I think you really are a chocoholic. I never knew this about you! You kept your addiction hidden well. Wait, I just remembered molten lava cakes at Chilis. I should've seen the signs.

    Your girls muttering as they walk out of the room? No way. They would never...

    Way to shake your fist all the way to your goals, man. Can't believe it's almost here. How about a sample workout? Now that you're almost done. Would you put that under "cry?"

  2. Wow! I'm finding my name all over the blog world! I had no idea I was so famous! (This is Lori btw I don't know why it says Cash Family Blog, apparently at one time I wanted to be a blogger).