Hello darkness: Peter Wells on finding himself in the cancer ward

The remarkable taste experiment by which an inevitably cold thin piece of bread that was once “toasted” has been left to rest so it takes on a true cardboard consistency. It is then delivered to your room on a stone cold plate, alongside oleaginous matter of a yellowy substance and more substantial, nay even desperate dark noxious mixture known as Vegemite. And in your desperation and boredom and hunger you smear said contents across dry cardboard, open your mouth, take a bite and receive the information that there is no pity in existence, only hospital breakfasts. Nevertheless you resolve to look on the bright side of life, telling yourself it will only take a moment, you persevere and you eat every last crumb. “Delicious!” You mentally instruct yourself, while your taste buds cower and plead never to be so discriminated against again. The sad tale of the vegemite toast here endeth.