Thursday, February 01, 2007


One of my closest friends in the world, Uma (aka Urp) (also known around these here blog parts as thedarkeruma)—family to me—had a brain aneurism burst this morning. Thankfully, she was in New York with her fiancé John and he was able to get her to the hospital. She was in surgery earlier today and now she’s under sedation, on a ventilator, because she’s got lots of blood around her brain. The doctors are keeping her under sedation for the time being, hoping that her body will rest and heal. That’s all I really know tonight, and I feel weird blogging about it except that I know how happy she'll be to know she has a blog post devoted entirely to her. (So Urp, when you wake up—like the guy in the bed next to you, who’s up and alert and giving the doctors hell—you’re going to see this blog post and you’d better be damned happy about it, okay?)

I just saw Urp and she’s in bad shape, but we have to have hope, so…

…if you’re the type of person who prays, please please please do some praying.

…if you’re not the type of person who prays, please think happy, healthy thoughts.

…yell a message to Uma out your window, as loud as you can. Make it as un-PC as possible, because Uma likes it that way.

…even if you read this blog and don’t know Uma…even if you’re just coming across this blog post, randomly—a blog reader passing in the night—please take a second to tell a dirty joke, think a hopeful thought, and send out some love into the ether…


Anonymous said...


I am so sorry to hear this! I am definitely sending some love her way. I have never met her, but have heard so much about her. I hope all the best for her.


Rebecca said...

My God, Erik. I’m so sorry to hear this. I will add Uma to my prayer list… which seems to be getting longer by the day. What is going on in the world???

In the interest of laughter in the dark… I don’t have a dirty joke, but one I like –

2 men walk into a bar.

You’d think the second one would’ve known better!

Get well Uma! Remember – some strange chick you don’t know in Ohio is praying for you!!

Gina said...

I'm so sorry to hear about this..I am praying for her and will pass the word on. I have never had the good fortune of meeting Uma, but I feel like I know her from all you've gushed about her. If there's anything I can do, don't hesitate to pick up the phone. Love you!

Doug said...

I'll keep Uma and all of you in my prayers. Big hugs to all. Hang in there.

Anonymous said...

love love love health and love to the beautiful one, and to all of you, strength and more love. dorie

drc said...

See? I knew something was wrong! i have a great Urp joke...It is rather long, but I think she would love it!

Why I fired my secretary:

Last week was my birthday and I didn't feel very well waking up on that morning.

I went downstairs for breakfast hoping my wife would be pleasant and say, "Happy Birthday!", and possibly have a small present for me.

As it turned out, she barely said good morning, let alone "Happy Birthday."

I thought...Well, that's marriage for you, but the kids....They will remember.

My kids came bounding down stairs to breakfast and didn't say a word. So when I left for the office, I felt pretty low and somewhat despondent.

As I walked into my office, my secretary Jane said, "Good Morning Boss, and by the way Happy Birthday! " It felt a little better that at least someone had remembered.

I worked until one o'clock, when Jane knocked on my door and said, "You know, It's such a beautiful day outside, and it is your Birthday, what do you say we go out to lunch, just you and me." I said, "Thanks, Jane, that's the greatest thing I've heard all day. Let's go!"

We went to lunch. But we didn't go where we normally would go. She chose instead a quiet bistro with a private table. We had two martinis each and I enjoyed the meal tremendously. On the way back to the office, Jane said, "You know, It's such a beautiful day...We don't need to go straight back to the office, Do We ?"

I responded, "I guess not. What do you have in mind?" She said, "Let's drop by my apartment, it's just around the corner."

After arriving at her apartment, Jane turned to me and said, " Boss, if you don't mind, I'm going to step into the bedroom for just a moment. I'll be right back." "Ok," I nervously replied.

She went into the bedroom and, after a couple of minutes, she came out carrying a huge birthday cake ..Followed by my wife, my kids, and dozens of my friends and co-workers, all singing "Happy Birthday.

And I just sat there...

On the couch...


Eleanor said...

Thanks for posting this. I know it must have been weird, but it will make Ums happy.

Uma, when you read this, just know that I'm going to bring you flowers and hold your hand and do all the stuff that you would never in a million years let me do.

And you know what... I'm going to enojoy it! Ha ha!

I need you around, darky. So I'm counting on you.

Love to you both.

sheila said...

Oh man - very sorry to hear this. Scary. Sending healing happy warm thoughts her way.

Erik said...

THANK YOU, ALL OF YOU, for all of the healing thoughts and prayers. (And dirty jokes, and un-pc thoughts.)

Keep 'em coming. Uma is still in a fragile state, but she made some improvements today and there is lots of room for hope. I'm at the hospital with her and have been whispering all of your messages to her. I know it helps.

Love to all.

Jesse said...

Uma is one strong take-no-shit kind of girl, and she's not gonna let this get the best of her. She has lots more to do, lots more love to give, and lots more foul mouthed verbal ass kickings to hand out. And she hasn't flaked on me at the movies in ages, so all that is due and expected from her soon.

aimie said...

i've had every single candle in this log cabin lit for ums. i'll burn the cabin down if it makes a difference.

poop, i love you and i'm so happy you are there with that beautiful girl.

ums, i love you so. you are a fucking rock star to all who know you.

communicatrix said...

We just got in and read the news.

You know what it makes me think? How glad I am for every single second I've spent with Uma so far. And how stupid everything else is.

Uma, you nutjob, I am totally thinking of you...

Anonymous said...

Since reading about this today I have had your friend Uma in my thoughts. Through your blog and her comments I feel as though I've taken a peek into your friendship, you are both blessed to have each other.

Stay strong!

very handsome juicy timbermen want jolly uma


Anonymous said...

Amazing things are happening as Uma heals. She is bringing people together in ways that will amaze her when she wakes up. She is showing us the power of love and prayer, and reminding us that it doesn't matter what we believe or how we pray. It all counts.

Today the doctor told us we need to stop talking to her and touching her when we stand by her bed because she is responding too much. The response is a good thing, but they want her to be very still during this part of her healing process. She just wants to pull out her breathing tube and go home. She is mostly very still right now, so every move she makes is big. Today, it was very clear that she is aware of all the love that is coming her way and wants to respond.

The Uma in the hospital bed isn't the one we see in our mind's eye. This is the only Uma the nurses and doctors know. But her spirit is so powerful that those who know and love her can only see her one way--as a beautiful, loving, one-of-a-kind young woman.

Yesterday, in a Stage 5 coma when she arrived at the hospital, Uma nearly went to the other side. But she didn't. She stayed. She still has a lot of living to do.

She's going to need a lot of help with her recovery, and that is going to bring people together and take them out of themselves and make everyone who has the privilege of knowing and loving her a better person.

Uma has more love in her life than she ever realized. We probably all do.

Uma is an angel. She has so much left to do.

She still needs your prayers.


Ray-Ray said...

I'm just a random reader, but I offer my support in this way:

What do you call a fish with no eyes?
A fsssshhhhhhh!!!!!

That's my favorite joke. It's really funny out loud. It might not work on the internt. One girl I know once won $25 at a stand-up competition telling it. So -- I'll tell jokes and smile and laugh and be nice to people that I don't like today, and that can help tip the GOODNESS in the universe and can help your friend get better.

Anonymous said...

With all the stuff we come across everyday. All the annoying crap that puts us in a bad mood, It is sometime sad that we have to have something like this slap us in the face and remind us that it is “family” that keeps us sane on this planet.
And it is “family” that will bring Uma back to “this side.”

I have met Uma on a number of occasions, at Erik’s many plays and she is a wonderful spirit. I can’t wait to see her again at one of Erik’s plays.

And for a joke…of course it’s a golf joke.

Golf with an older Gentleman

A young man who was also an avid golfer found himself with a few hours to spare one afternoon. He figured if he hurried and played very fast, he could get in nine holes before he had to head home. Just as he was about to tee off an old gentleman shuffled onto the tee and asked if he could accompany the young man as he was golfing alone. Not being able to say no, he allowed the old gent to join him.

To his surprise the old man played fairly quickly. He didn't hit the ball far, but plodded along consistently and didn't waste much time. Finally, they reached the 9th fairway and the young man found himself with a tough shot. There was a large pine tree right in front of his ball - and directly between his ball and the green.

After several minutes of debating how to hit the shot the old man finally said, "You know, when I was your age I'd hit the ball right over that tree."

With that challenge placed before him, the youngster swung hard, hit the ball up, right smack into the top of the tree trunk and it thudded back on the ground not a foot from where it had originally lay.

The old man offered one more comment, "Of course, when I was your age that pine tree was only three feet tall."


Anonymous said...

Day 3.

Uma continues to improve. She moves her legs, her arms, her shoulders. We sense that she is responding to the presence of loved ones at her bedside. She wants to wake up and complain about all the attention everyone is giving her. Not yet--the doctors are still keeping her sedated so her body can heal. So the waiting continues.

Meanwhile, prayers are being said for her by thousands of people all over the country. Friends are reconnecting with each other as they share Uma's ordeal. Although Uma isn't one who likes to be the center of attention, she will be pleased to awaken to a world in which so many of the people she loves have drawn closer.

Keep those prayers coming.


Christina said...

I haven't prayed in a very long time but I've been praying hard for Uma! And I did a little naked bathroom dance to summon the gods to heal her. I am *sure* that will work...

You two have such an absolutely beautiful friendship. I can only hope I someday have someone who is so close to my heart!

So glad to hear the good developments...I'm still praying for all of you!!

Beautiful, feisty Uma, hurry up (or take your time) and get well!!!


christy said...

I don't know why Blogger was tripping out before...that was my comment! :)

(you can never have too many x's or o's)

Anonymous said...

Mary Magel from The Missy Project

I was just made aware of Uma's condition by a dear friend Linda Oku. She contacted me because I have had a personal experience with brain aneurysm disease claiming my daughter's precious little life at age 12. This is such sad news.

I would like y'all to know that so much advancement has been made in the field of neurology towards brain aneurysm bursts. I am confident if she is moving body parts, that is only good news. I will pray for her and would be glad to help her friends and family with information. That is the mission of the non profit I started after Missy's death. We provide outreach support and education to those with brain aneurysm disease. Please visit our site:
I will stay in touch with this blog to hear updates. Please let mek now if I can provide any help.

Peace and Blessings,

Mary Magel
Executive Director
The Missy Project

Anonymous said...

Uma and Erik,
I am sending you both strong thoughts and fighter energy, although I know you both already have plenty of that. I love you Erik. Please give Uma a hand squeeze and a kiss from me.

Anonymous said...

Wait...this is Sian again...
I forgot to tell Uma my favorite joke.

So two Canadian guys are sitting in a bar and they're bored...cause it's Canada...and one guy says to the other one, "Hey you want to play twenty questions?"
And the second guy says, "Well yeah, okay."
So the first guy goes, "You think of something in your head, but don't tell me what it is!"
So the second guy thinks for a long time and finally comes up with the perfect thing which his friend is never going to guess...Moosecock.
Really proud of himself, he says "Okay, I got it in my head. Ask me anything."
So the first guy thinks for a moment and then says, "Okay, it good to eat?"
And the second guy ponders this for a long time and then says, "Uhh...well...gosh, I don't know...I mean, I guess you could eat it."
And the first guy goes, "Is it MOOSECOCK?!!!"

Anonymous said...

The waiting continues, but there is so much positive energy and prayer coming Uma's way and she surely knows it. She looks better today. She still moves restlessly, thouogh she remains heavily sedated as the doctors wait for the blood to drain from her brain or be reabsorbed in her body. There has been improvement every day. The prayers are working.

How exciting to hear about The Missy Project, and what a beautiful thing for Mary to do--turning her pain into healing energy and help for others. Thank you, Mary. Uma's family will be so grateful for your support.

Last night it was cloudy and freezing in NY and it was supposed to snow, but this morning it was sunny and the sky was so blue. It felt like Uma was spreading sunshine over this wintry place. Her light shines on all of us, and we are reflecting it back to her through our hopes and prayers.


Anonymous said...

Here's a joke that we think Uma will like:
Two kids decided to play twenty questions, and one kid was like "you go first", his friend said "ok", and so he thought of moosecock, and the other kid was "like ok, you ready?" And his friend was like, "yeah". So the kid said, "I’m gonna ask you twenty questions to try and guess what it is that you’re thinking of". So his friend said "ok", so the kid asked "is it edible"? And his friend said, "no, well...I guess it could be". And the other kid said..."is it moosecock"?
WAKE-UP soon so we can tell you more!!!!!

Lots of love and hope,
Kimberly and Sid

donna said...


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