Why the blog?

Short Sharp Scratch is a satirical and uncompromising blog charting one man’s adventure with cytoreductive surgery.

The aim of this blog is to chart my passage (not my back one) as I undergo complete cytoreduction surgery in connection with a recurrence of my bowel cancer. It is primarily intended as a medium by which Ali and myself can update family, friends, colleagues and anyone with a passing interest in this particular surgical procedure. To that end I hope that it will prove useful as a support page to others who are currently or in the future undergoing cytoreductive surgery.


What the hell is this cytoreductive surgery anyway?


  1. Nigel

    Hi Simon, from the look of the expert surgical team you have around you, are you sure they will not lop off a leg my mistake. Oh missus!!!!

    • Simon

      As Bryan Hanrahan said โ€œIโ€™ve counted them all out and I will count them all inโ€ ๐Ÿ˜‚

  2. Paula Reid

    Wow Simon thatโ€™s some surgery youโ€™re having.

  3. Michaela lamble

    I wish you lots of luck you have a good woman by you’re side hope all goes well and you get over this quickly and back on the bike Micky xxx

  4. You only have 2!!!!!

  5. Liam McSweeney

    The things people do to lose a little bit of weight ๐Ÿ˜‰ !! Good luck Simon we are all crossing fingers toes and any other appendage that crosses! Let me know when you are up for a visit and I will arrange to come an annoy you a bit :)!

  6. Tracey HoneyC

    We will be thinking of you tomorrow Simon (and Ali) – I know you will crack this and be back at home recuperating shortly and getting back to being fighting fit ๐Ÿ˜„ xx hope your ๐Ÿฉ is ok lol xx love Tracey (HoneyC) xx

  7. Jock Easton

    Simon; top tip – check you didn’t do anything inappropriate regarding the theatre hostesses; i’ll stand ready to give you an alibi……. Julia & I are thinking of you both.

  8. Rob Davey

    Gerry and I just read blog good luck and will be thinking of you tomorrow

  9. Tracey Bentley

    Thinking of you both for tomorrow, anything you need just let me know ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜

  10. Mel Gwynn

    Good luck today stay strong you can beat this love and hugs to you both love Mel and Steve xxxx

  11. Jem williams

    Thinking of you both today and hoping all goes well. Love Jem and Sarah (off the bus) x

  12. Sarah Brown

    Loved the photo, thinking of you xxx

  13. Rachel Deakin

    So glad all went well today Simon, been thinking about you & Ali all day. Know you wonโ€™t read this for a bit but sending you virtual hugs – Rachel & Paul xx

  14. Keith Peters

    Definitely pulled off the look in that gown and stockings, much better than I could do.. All the guys in team wishing you well Simon, will be up to see once you are up for it, let us know anything you might want … Keith

  15. Well done Simon and Ali. Keep giving the ‘Big C’ a punch on the nose. Onwards and upwards etc.

  16. Jayne Lord

    Simon. You donโ€™t know me, panic not I am not some crazy stalker, I went to school with Alison. I follow her and by association you on FB and always giggle at your antics. Clearly your surgery is no laughing matter but they do say laughter is the best medicine (sorry my grandpa loved Readers Digest). I want to wish you well for your recovery and thank you for sharing this experience in such a wonderfully human way. Onwards and upwards. Jayne Lord (nee Cummins)

    • Simon

      Many thanks Jayne. At the end of the day (starting with a cliche already) feeling sorry for yourself isnโ€™t going to make you better, if we can have a laugh about it on the way, well I figure thatโ€™s got to help

  17. Amanda

    Glad youโ€™re slowly on the mend – good luck with the circuit training!

  18. Jock Easton

    Simon – re your latest series of pictures. I recall the foetal position as the same pose you regularly took post lunch; siesta as per the PFI contract you told me. I clearly remember Rob pointing to you asleep (or Foeteling) on your desk behind your laptop. As for the shampoo & set; frankly, the hat suits you a treat. Are you wearing your curlers underneath ? The grimace gives it away; my mum used to do that. Good luck with the cat; at least it was the cat you were handling when the nurse called…….
    Keep up the good progress! How’s Allie ?

  19. Keith Peters

    Ho Simon you up for a visit? Anything you need ??

    • Simon

      I am Keith, let me know what time suits you. Donโ€™t need anything Keith but if you wang to bring something il have a โ€˜Rice crispy squareโ€™ (my new diet…)

  20. Julie Willey

    Excellent to hear your coming home on Saturday Iโ€™m sure the hospital will have a massive leaving party when they know your safely out of sight and least 100 mikes away ..he he ๐ŸŽˆ๐ŸŽ‰๐ŸŽŠ๐ŸŽˆ!!!
    No seriously, keep up the fight, your doing amazingly well. Love to you & Mrs C xxxx

  21. Keith Peters

    Excellent news that the nurses didn’t find the third tunnel and you made escape. I’ll send you some marmite in a red cross parcel , I think you said you loved it ๐Ÿ™‚

  22. Keith Peters

    Thinking of you guys, any time you need a chat Simon you know you can call… Keith

  23. Catherine Bissett

    Just had a catch up on your blog and apart from the admiration I have for both of you, I just can’t get over how incredibly unfair this all is!

  24. Paul

    I can’t begin to imagine what you’re both going through but remember those feelings of ‘uh is this really happening’ punctuated by numbness and painful eyes.
    Campervan is great. Who’s going to drive it? See you on the road.

  25. Keith

    Simon and Ali thinking of you at this time. If ever you want to chat you know where I am. All the best for Christmas..

  26. Jo

    Hi Simon and Ali. I have just come across your blog and hope you’re both doing as well as can be hoped. I’m the founding director of CancerPal (www.cancerpal.co.uk) and Ali, I wondered if you might be interested in writing a guest blog for us – relating to how people can support their loved ones going through cancer. If this is of interest please don’t hesitate to drop me a note. Warmest regards. Jo

    • Ali

      Dear Jo, Thank you so much for the message, I would love to get involved and do anything I can to support anyone going through this from the point of supporting the loved one through cancer. Ali x

      • Jo

        Hi Ali, Thank you so much for getting back to me and for your separate email. I know it’s pretty difficult to go through a cancer diagnosis – but it’s also pretty difficult to watch someone you love go through that diagnosis and there doesn’t seem to be mush help & support out there for the family & friends so just trying to do out little bit to change that. I just wanted to let you know that I have replied to your email but I think sometimes my emails get sent to junk… Warmest regards. Jo x

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