We have a finite amount of time. Whether short or long, it doesn’t matter. Life is to be lived.
I think that we all stand on the dartboard of life. Roughly 30,000 people a year are going to catch a dart labeled pancreatic cancer, and that’s unfortunate. It’s not what I would have chosen. But I in no way feel like I deserved it.
Make clear that people understand what your circumstances are. And looking for pity – that’s a mistake.
I’m dying, and I’m having fun.
I’m not going to beat the cancer. I tried really hard… but sometimes you’re just not going to beat the thing… I wanted to walk off the stage and say anything I thought was important; I had my hour.
If I could only give three words of advice, they would be, ‘Tell the truth.’ If I got three more words, I’d add, ‘All the time.’
We don’t beat the reaper by living longer, we beat the reaper by living well and living fully.
There’s an academic tradition called the ‘Last Lecture.’ Hypothetically, if you knew you were going to die and you had one last lecture, what would you say to your students? Well, for me, there’s an elephant in the room. And the elephant in the room, for me, it wasn’t hypothetical.
Work hard. I got tenure a year early. Junior faculty members used to say to me: ‘Wow, what’s your secret?’ I said: ‘It’s pretty simple. Call me any Friday night in my office at 10 o’clock, and I’ll tell you.’
I’ve never understood pity and self-pity as an emotion.