My Personal American Horror Story

This is the photo taken right before my family's interview with the #AmericanHorrorStory producers. What's yours?  Pictured below is me, Monte E Shaffer, Harriett A. Shaffer, and David Edward Shaffer.
Read the full story coming this Sunday, October 14th.

The Secret Allure of Selfishness is Becoming Intoxicating

Calling on the World:

Please Help Me Stop My Downward Spiral Into Selfishness For the past two decades of my life, I have tried my best to operate under the premise that I greatly benefit myself, my community, my country and the world at large when I help others, when I contribute to  the greater good,  when I recognize the needs of others first, and when I remain open-minded.

The costs and risks associated withsimply being kind, after all, are minimal.

A few weeks ago while browsing at Big Lots I fell in love with an $8 sign that reads “Kind is Cool”, and I brought it home to hang on the wall in my kitchen because I believe that being kind should be considered cool by everyone, and I want guests in my home to see the sign and ponder all the meaning that these three little words strung together pack in.

Recently, however, I have experienced a rapid onslaught of happenstances in my life, some of which on a normal day might seemingly be trivial and some much more complicated but none insurmo…

Today is My New Year's Day & I Have a Resolution

Today is my New Year's Day as I turn 53. The past two years have been full of so many challenges, mostly centered around my health, and at times it has become all-consuming. I've remarked recently how I feel sometimes like my Grandmother who's conversations often centered around her most recent ailment or perceived ailment. As we age I know this can become the trend and although I loved you, Grandma, this is not a part of you that I wish to emulate.

My New Year's resolution is to remember that the last two years and every day have more importantly been filled with great friends and a tremendous amount of support. Therefore, as of today, I choose to cast aside the chains of my health issues that hold me down and celebrate my good fortune that is filled with good friends because Pinky Penmark, Pinky Penmark Speaks, Pinky Penmark Blogs and myself have a lot left to do and big plans coming for this next year.

Coming Next Week on Pinky Penmark Blogs: The Death of Covert Racism

Racism is Now Overt, in Your Face and Permissible Thanks to Trump and His Base.Politics and policy aside, there can be no arguing against the shameful fact that extremism has become our country's new normal. 

Hate speech, homophobia, racism and most any other fear mongering word that you can tack ~i s m on to the end of is now commonplace in our daily lives. I hear examples of it every day and I don't mean from the television news, the fake news, the faux news or the Trump-loving news channel. I am talking about overhearing it or experiencing it during my daily life right here in St. Petersburg Florida.To Be Continued.

Life, Interrupted: Another Medical Curveball Teeters Me Over the Batshit Crazy Cliff

Last I posted my phone was ringing with my doctor on the other end presumably waiting to tell me that my cancer had returned followed by how long I may have to live because she knows that I made the decision some time ago that another round of chemotherapy was not an option with which I was willing to live.

Much to my surprise, those were not the words she delivered to me, and today's post, which I had promised to post a week ago, was going to focus on the short-lived excitement and relief I experienced followed by dismay, confusion and near depression I found myself immersed in after her phone call. But once again, nothing in my life can go as planned these days as one crisis merely wraps up just in time for the next one to reveal itself.

Briefly, here is the good news my doctor delivered that oddly enough left me feeling lost and nearly depressed about my future. I have explained previously that my doctors and myself had feared the worst: that my cancer had returned.
To the thr…

Coming this Week--Epiloque to a Phone Call: WTF Do I Do Now?

In order to keep our readers up to speed, coming in short order this week will be "Epilogue to a Phone Call: WTF Do I Do Now?" Watch for it by Wednesday, July 4, 20018.Please note going forward that if life were to take another turn as it did recently for me and you desire faster updates than this blog may be able to provide, you may subscribe to Pinky Penmark Speaks newsletter at and Both of these places allow for brief and more timely updates that do not require a lengthy editing process. Do keep in mind, although, that the focus of Pinky Penmark Blogs is not expected to focus on my life, yet, as it did recently, my life may present a personal topic on occasion upon which I may blog. Other posts on this subject may also be found on Pinky Penmark Blogs by entering keyword/label Cancer into the search field atop the blog's header.

Tomorrow is the First Day of the Final Chapter of My Life

(written 22 hours before a scheduled life-changing doctor appoint) "is she really going to tell me how long I have left to live over the freaking phone?"
Tomorrow at 10am everything I have felt for the past few months will be confirmed. Tick tock, tick tock.
I should be outside enjoying nature, relaxing at the beach, doing something daredevil-ish, something, anything to soak in life, to absorb the feeling of what I anticipate to be the last day of freedom and frolicking without the weight of my mortality forcing me to acknowledge what my conscience has been whispering to me for quite some time.
Tomorrow, Wednesday, June 13, 2018, at 10am I will learn the results of a battery of tests I had last week to determine what cancer has in store for me next. 
You would think I would be worried, scared, reaching out to anyone I could for comfort. But, instead, I sit here alone, and in silence contemplating what I should do with the final days and weeks of my life. Only two other peop…