Sam Simon made a fortune from The Simpsons. Now, diagnosed with terminal cancer, he is racing to spend it.
The story of Jim Olson and his Tumor Paint dream.
Previously: Brendan I. Koerner on the Longform Podcast.
The long road to a potential breakthrough.
The story of Nicole Davis, a 25-year-old woman diagnosed with breast cancer six months into her pregnancy.
The writer contemplates beauty and identity following reconstructive surgery.
There was a long period of time, almost a year, during which I never looked in a mirror. It wasn’t easy, for I’d never suspected just how omnipresent are our own images. I began by merely avoiding mirrors, but by the end of the year I found myself with an acute knowledge of the reflected image, its numerous tricks and wiles, how it can spring up at any moment: a glass tabletop, a well-polished door handle, a darkened window, a pair of sunglasses, a restaurant’s otherwise magnificent brass-plated coffee machine sitting innocently by the cash register.
A son chronicles his father’s death:
My father's mortician was a careless barber. Stepping up to the open casket, I realized too much had been taken off the beard. The sides were trimmed tidy, the bottom cut flat across. It was a disconcerting sight, because in his last years, especially, my father had worn his beard wild, equal parts loony chemist and liquor store Santa. The mortician ought to have known this, I thought, because he knew the man in life. My father — himself the grandson of a funeral home director — would drop by Davey-Linklater in Kincardine, Ontario, now and then for a friendly chat. How's business? Steady as she goes? Death was his favourite joke.
Nearly four years later, I sometimes type his email address in the search box in my Gmail. Hundreds of results pop up, and I’ll pick a few at random to read. The ease of our everyday interactions is what kills me.
Remembering a relationship through IM.
Timothy Brown was diagnosed with HIV in the ’90s. In 2006, he found that a new, unrelated disease threatened his life: leukemia. After chemo failed, doctors resorted to a bone marrow transplant. That transplant erased any trace of HIV from his body, and may hold the secret of curing AIDS.
A profile of Jobs. The themes: immortality, relinquishing control, and how being adopted affected his choices for Apple. The lede: “One day, Steve Jobs is going to die.”