The Cancer Chronicles began at the beginning of this year. A grayed Ron Shock sits on his bed in a black and blue robe to tell us the most important story of his more than 30-year career in comedy. “It is the only story I will have ever told you, where I don’t know how it ends,” the former member of the legendary Texas Outlaw Comics tells us through dispersed deep breaths.
On Dec. 14, 2011, Shock was diagnosed with urethral cancer, a “rare and very aggressive form of cancer that…does not respond well to conventional treatments.” The famed storyteller began posting videos on YouTube recently with the aforemented title. This story follows Shock in his treatments at the MD Anderson Center, one of the best cancer treatment centers in the country, his thoughts on battling the disease and his still-humurous outlook on the world. In his second video, he mentions that Part I received ‘likes’ and ‘dislikes’ on YouTube. He thinks out loud with a smile on his face, “There are people that like this. ‘Thank God Shock got cancer.’ And there are people who dislike it. ‘Don’t put this shit up here. We don’t want to watch this. We want to watch a dog play with–”. A light-hearted Shock is laughing too hard to finish his own sentence.
Shock is a stand-up comedian who ran with the Texas Outlaw Comics, including Steve Epstein and Bill Hicks, in the early 1980s. He started comedy late in life, in his late 30s, referring to his act as “comedy from a life fully lived.” He was quickly booked on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson at the age of 40, just the beginning of a long successful career on the road. Now, the comedian manages to share a hopeful outlook to a grievous situation.
Please visit his website, ronshock.com, and click Cancer Fund to donate whatever you can to aid this legend with his medical bills. You can check out his latest video entry below.
And you can follow the Cancer Chronicles here.
And to get a taste of Shock’s stand-up, check out the clip below.