Episode 3: Cancer + Comedy with Nick P. Ross



Nick P. Ross is a writer, producer, and director in Los Angeles, and he's a super fun guy to chat with. He creates a lot of content for Soul Pancake, a YouTube channel and creative agency known for asking life’s BIG questions. Nick also had cancer (Hodgkin’s Lymphoma) when he was 26. He's ten years post-treatment this year. In this episode, we talk about the comedy that came from one of life's biggest challenges, and think together about some of his poignant and funny moments along the way.


  • Nick’s story of moving to NYC to pursue a comedy career after college, and how illness drove him for testing, biopsy, and treatment of Hodgkin’s Lymphoma Stage 2B.
  • How Nick went from dealing with the shock of a cancer diagnosis to making a highly public film series.
  • Even in an “altered” state overshadowed by cancer, Nick’s comedy dream was upheld.
  • Open mic night at Freak Train: “Hi, I’m Nick, and I have cancer.”
  • Traveling around the country with his one-man show--until it wasn’t fun anymore.
  • How Nick’s father’s death in 2013 prompted him to create his stories with video, and how they ended up on Soul Pancake.
  • How cancer opened his narrow tunnel vision and allowed Nick to see a greater world.
  • Nick’s advice to himself back then: “Go to the doctor earlier. Don’t be so stubborn.”
  • The cultural stigma for men and masculinity in “being strong” and ignoring health concerns.
  • The concept of wanting to feel special for going through a life-threatening illness.
  • Dispelling the myth that “cancer comes from hate in your heart."
  • One of the funniest moments in Nick’s cancer journey: the scooter story.
  • The BIG questions that Nick’s videos answer: What is Love? When was the last time you cried?


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Lauren Selfridge