It's Always Something (Gilda Radner 1946-1989) - Simon and Schuster - 1989 - 269 pages

To read this book is to have Gilda in the room one more time.  Her honesty is chilling.  After meeting and marrying her second husband, Gene Wilder, she decided to write a book about her happy life.  However, two years into the marriage, Gilda was diagnosed with advanced ovarian cancer and the story she had started became an account of her struggle with this terrible disease.  In chapter 6, she analyzed her life habits to try to determine the cause of her illness: "My father smuggled beer into the United States; I smuggled cyclamates ... I was heavy into saccharin and cyclamates for over twenty years ... I started smoking when I was fourteen . I thought it was the coolest thing anyone could possibly do ... I have always loved red candies.  I was like a Red Dye #2 junkie ... I have always been a compulsive consumer.  I chewed a tremendous amount of gum - sugarless bubble gum by the case.  I consumed boxes of chocolate-covered peanuts ... I have eaten tuna for lunch almost every day of my life since I could chew ... I barbecued every Memorial Day weekend in my life, every Fourth of July, every Labor Day and every Sunday in the summer ... and I loved burnt stuff ... Whatever the American Cancer Society says causes cancer, I have undoubtedly done it."  From 1986 through 1988, Gilda endured four different chemotherapy regimens, radiation treatments and a strict macrobiotic routine.  The book ends on a positive note in October 1988 after the fourth round of chemotherapy sent her cancer back in remission.  Sadly, the final unwritten chapter took her life in the same year that her book was published.  [JAM 3/17/2012]


1.  The Marriage!

2.  The Baby and the Movie Star

3.  Forty

4.  The Journey

5.  The Hospital

6.  Cancer

7.  Chemotherapy

8.  The War

9.  The Wellness Community

10. The Comedienne

11. What's Funny about it

12. The Second Look

13. "Delicious Ambiguity"

14. Life

15. Alternatives

16. Change