Friday, April 13, 2007

I Love New York

I was in New York for an IDEAlliance board meeting today, and happened to walk through the corner of 42nd and Broadway on Thursday night. I decided to cross the street to where a street musician was playing his saxophone on the corner. I listened to his music while waiting for the light, and realized that I recognized the music. He was playing, and playing well, Meatloaf; in fact, he was playing "Hot Patootie" from the Rocky Horror Picture Show. This was followed by "Paradise by the Dashboard Light," which is both a classic and nontrivial to arrange for saxophone. I ended up having a short conversation with him, and left a few bits of folding money instead of just change in his instrument case. You won't find this at 10:30 at night in San Jose.

Gotta love it.

In the spirit of full disclosure, Meatloaf was on the Bat of out Hell III - Seize the Night tour, and was scheduled to play at the Garden that night; however, the show was postponed until mid-July due to illness. Arranging the music for sax and the entrepreneurial spirit both deserve praise; it's more than your normal view of a street musician.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Transdniestria, Moldova, and Russia in American Media

Peter, who's in the Peace Corps in Moldova, made a few complaints about the lack of coverage of Moldova's simmering conflict with Russia in Transdniestria in western media. I was quite surprised when the March 22 edition of Time magazine had an article and diagram of all of Russia's conflicts. One of them was Moldova and Transdniestria. To get the full impact, I did copy the graphic from the magazine (click on the picture for a full-resolution PDF).

It may not be the highest item in American media, but it does get noted occasionally.

A few bits of background on Transnistria include Tod Lindberg's Turmoil in Moldova, a bulletin from the US State Department (kind of dry, but gets the basic facts), and a bibliography by the Library of Congress. Also, the US State department has a good summary of Moldova, including the history of the Transnistrian conflict.

Sunday, April 01, 2007


This blog has been a tale of woes and medical wonders for the past three months. I'm now ready to put this behind me. It is time to start the rest of the year, and even the rest of my life, on a less eventful basis.

I'm tempted to look back on these three months and think of all of the pain, lost time, and recovery. But I had a great bike ride in January (saw a coyote on my way into the mountains... always a treat) before my crash. I've had great, but short, bike rides as I have recovered. I had a wonderful Indian meal with co-workers before food poisoning struck and started. And I was not writing in pain from my gall stones: this is supposed to be a very painful experience, but now people look at the big scar on my face and say "you must have a high pain threshold." I guess they figure that I ride a Harley also.

Thanks to friends and co-workers for the supporting emails, get-well cards, and visits in the hospital. The wonders of finding a co-worker who became a nurse, and was a student nurse one of my days in the hospital. And for people at work filling in for me as I have disappeared for weeks.
Thanks to the medical profession for the great respectful care. This is true for doctors, surgeons, X-ray technicians, and even the people who draw blood and insert IVs.
Thanks to Medical Science for CAT scans, MRI's , and incredible procedures like ERCP and Laparoscopic Surgery (see previous post). Also thanks to physical therapy for helping to bring me back, and Chiropractors for fixing my twisted back.
Thanks to Ann and my family I've put you through a lot, but you were always there with smiles, phone calls, and encouraging words.
Thanks to God for rapid recoveries I find the way that the body can heal to be nothing short of miraculous.

Also, if you ever need some hospital tips, I'm told that the meatloaf is a good menu choice at Good Samaritan's (you get to pick your food from a menu... great for a hospital). Have the nurse inject the Demerol slowly to prevent nausea. And get out of the hospital bed and walk as much and as often as you can.