Monday, September 26, 2016

The Kiss

“In many cultures, kissing was one of the first opportunities for individuals to get close enough to sniff each other in socially acceptable ways,” he said. The Inuit press their nostrils on the cheeks or forehead of someone for whom they feel great affection, gently inhaling their scent.

Drink Tea Every Day


Hot and Cold

I know people get excited about summer but I like Autumn. Autumn is the season for grilling and playing bocce and swimming in the ocean and cold ponds. I love body shock of jumping into an icy pond after a hot sauna.

Chess Tables

We visited our niece in Leominster and there were chess tables on the green. I hope we can have chess tables in Woonsocket someday.

Dreaming of Sheep


Autumn is Here!

The apples are crisp and 4 AM is cold out with Orion above the neighbors house. I am dreaming about making apple molasses granola. Granola with tea is the best snack in the world especially with Yorkshire tea.




My room mate made pancakes this morning, said Derek,
"Pancakes are the ultimate comfort food. Whenever I see photos of pancakes it's seductive, it's food pornography."

Tea for Life


Endorphins Endocannabinoids

How to Achieve a Runner’s High
Science reveals how you can produce more feel-good chemicals while running.
By K. Aleisha Fetters Friday, April 25, 2014, 9:00 am
Image by Dan Woodger

Sometimes we get it, sometimes we don’t. But we always want it—and more of it. It’s the runner’s high, and when we are lucky enough to tap into it our runs feel easy, exhilarating, even euphoric. But we aren’t always that lucky, are we?

Recently, researchers studied how the brain responds to running and found that the ability to get “high” while logging miles might be hard-wired within us. Years ago, our ancestors’ survival likely depended on chasing down food. The desire to live was possibly their motivation to run and run fast, and the feel-good brain chemicals released when they did so may have helped them achieve the speed and distances required, says David A. Raichlen, Ph.D., an associate professor of anthropology at the University of Arizona. The runner’s high may have served (and serves today) as a natural painkiller, masking tired legs and blistered feet, he says.

Even though you no longer have to chase down dinner, learning how happy brain reactions are sparked may help you achieve the runner’s high more often.

The Trigger: Endorphins

Nature’s home-brewed opiates, endorphins are chemicals that act a lot like their medically engineered counterpart, morphine. Runners have credited them for their feel-good effects for decades, but it wasn’t until 2008 that German researchers used brain scans on runners and were able to identify exactly where they originated. The scientists found that during two-hour-long runs, subjects’ pre-frontal and limbic regions (which light up in response to emotions like love) spewed out endorphins. The greater the endorphin surge in these brain areas, the more euphoric the runners reported feeling.

Get It: Push yourself - hard, but not too hard. Endorphins are painkillers produced in response to physical discomfort, says Matthew Hill, Ph.D., an assistant professor at the University of Calgary’s Hotchkiss Brain Institute. But that doesn’t mean your runs should be excruciating; you need to find a sweet spot where they are comfortably challenging (think tempo run). In the German study, for example, the subjects were experienced runners for whom a two-hour run at a six-to seven-mile-an-hour pace wasn’t easy nor was it gut-busting. “Most runners I have worked with experience endorphins when they are pushing their bodies, but not usually at max effort,” says Cindra S. Kamphoff, Ph.D., director of the Center for Sport and Performance Psychology at Minnesota State University. A short, casual run likely won't produce enough discomfort to trigger a rush. Attempt a pace or distance that's too aggressive, and you'll possibly be too overwhelmed by the effort to feel good. As powerful as they are, endorphins can’t override an injury or lack of training (which is why newbies aren’t likely to feel elated when they are just starting out).

Hooking up with others could also help: An Oxford University study reported that rowers who exercised together significantly increased their endorphin release compared with solo rowers. When you are on your own, consider wearing headphones: Research shows that listening to your favorite music may spike endorphins.

The Trigger: Endocannabinoids

Endorphins get all the attention, but your body also pumps out endocannabinoids, which are a naturally synthesized version of THC, the chemical responsible for the buzz that marijuana produces. The most examined endocannabinoid produced in the body, anandamide, is believed to create a feeling of calmness, Hill says. Endorphins can be created only by specialized neurons, but pretty much any cell in the body is capable of making endocannabinoids, which means they have the potential to make a bigger impact on your brain.

Get It: Endocannabinoid production is believed to react more strongly in response to stress as opposed to pain (the stronger endorphin activator). Differentiating between physical stress and discomfort during a run is nearly impossible. Which means the same mechanism that triggers endorphins can also trigger endocannabinoids: a challenging (not killer) workout. Raichlen says that running at 70 to 85 percent of your age-adjusted maximum heart rate is optimal in spiking the primary stress hormone cortisol, and producing endocannabinoids. (If you’re 30, you’d aim for between 142 and 161 beats per minute.)

Hill’s research suggests that, in small doses, mental stress may also increase endocannabinoid production. So prerace jitters could have a payoff. However, chronic stress can dull this effect.

That may be one reason why Cecilia J. Hillard, Ph.D., director of the Neuroscience Research Center at the Medical College of Wisconsin, has found that people need eight hours of sleep a night for optimal endocannabinoid production. What’s more, her research shows that endocannabinoid levels are three times greater first thing in the morning compared with when you hit the hay. Though there’s no scientific proof, this could suggest that a morning run is more likely to produce a high than an afternoon or evening run. Set your alarm; it’s worth experimenting!

Let me hear your Pain: Diverting Drug Addiction

If I was a guest teacher at the schools again I would ask students about their pain. This might be a good place to start. Can we divert energies away from drug addiction? Keeping a journal can save your life, I'd tell them. The side effect is poetry and connection.

French Radio

My Brazilian neighbors speak Portuguese and I listen to French radio to wake up my ears and remember my years of studying French. The world is a big place. I have been thinking about the local people in our magical city and wondering ways we can prevent having any more drug overdoses. There are many avenues and tools. I think our society is failing if people are reaching for opium. We all want to feel good but an epidemic of these proportions points to a huge problem in our society. Can we have a family meeting? I said that as a child growing up in a narcissistic household. I was aware of the holes. I made plans to escape by running away. I knew what love was from my grandparents. I was a lucky one.

Good Friends Are Good for You

Social Ties: The Key to Health and Happiness
Good Friends Are Good for You

By Tom Valeo
WebMD: Better information. Better health.
Good Friends Are Good for You

"You got to have friends to make that day last long," sings Bette Midler.

Good friends may help your life last longer, too.

A recent study followed nearly 1,500 older people for 10 years. It found that those who had a large network of friends outlived those with fewer friends by more than 20%.

Why? Some think good friends keep you from doing things that are bad for you, like smoking and heavy drinking. Friends may also ward off depression, boost your self-esteem, and provide support.

As people age, they tend to be more selective in their choice of friends, so they spend more time with people they like.

Close relationships with children and relatives, in contrast, had almost no effect on longevity. Lynne C. Giles, one of the researchers who conducted the study, emphasized that family ties are important, they just seem to have little effect on survival.
The Health Benefits of Good Friends

Lots of research has shown social support and good health are connected.

One recent study of people with ovarian cancer says those with lots of social support had much lower levels of a protein linked to more aggressive cancers. This made their chemotherapy treatments more effective.

In another study, women with breast cancer in a support group lived twice as long as those not in a group. They also had much less pain.

Sheldon Cohen, PhD, a psychology professor at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, says strong social support helps people cope with stress.

"There may be broader effects as well,” Cohen says. “Friends encourage you to take better care of yourself. And people with wider social networks are higher in self-esteem, and they feel they have more control over their lives."

Other studies show people with fewer friends tend to die sooner after having a heart attack than people with a strong social network. Having lots of friends may even reduce your chance of catching a cold.

"People with social support have fewer cardiovascular problems and immune problems, and lower levels of cortisol -- a stress hormone," says Tasha R. Howe, PhD, associate professor of psychology at Humboldt State University.

"[We] are social animals, and we have evolved to be in groups,” Howe says. “We have always needed others for our survival. It's in our genes.”

People with a big social group tend to be more at peace, which leads to better health, Howe says.
Friends Can Be Stressful

Your buddies can be a source of stress, though. Friends can cause more stress than others because we care so much about them.

Julianne Holt-Lunstad, PhD, associate professor of psychology at Brigham Young University, says dealing with people who cause conflicted feelings in us can raise blood pressure more than dealing with people we don't like.

"My colleagues and I were interested in relationships that contain a mix of positivity and negativity," she says. "For example, you might love your mother very much, but still find her overbearing or critical at times."

Holt-Lunstad and her colleagues found that blood pressure was highest when people were interacting with someone they had mixed feelings about.

"We suspect that people we feel positive toward can hurt us that much more when they make a snide comment or don't come through for us because they are important to us,” she says. “Friends may help us cope with stress, but they also may create stress."

So would we be better off having no friends at all? Hardly.

"One thing research shows is that as one's social network gets smaller, one's risk for mortality increases," Holt-Lunstad says.

How much? She says it’s almost as much as if you smoke.
The Impact of Loneliness

What about loners? Are they at greater risk of dying because they like to be alone?

Only if they feel lonely.

Drug use among young people is higher among those who say they’re lonely. Older lonely people tend to have higher blood pressure and poorer sleep quality. They also were more tense and anxious.

In one study, college freshmen who had small social networks and claimed to be lonely had weaker immune responses to flu vaccinations. They also had higher levels of stress hormones in their blood.
How Women's Friendships Are Different

In general, women are better at keeping friends than men. Women "tend and befriend," says Shelley E. Taylor, PhD, a psychology professor at UCLA. They respond to stress by protecting, nurturing, and seeking support from others. This pattern regulates the seeking, giving, and receipt of social support, Taylor says. It reduces psychological and biological stress.

Margaret Gibbs, PhD, professor of psychology at Fairleigh Dickinson University, says men and women relate to others differently throughout life.

"Male friendships are more about helping each other -- mending the lawn mower, that sort of thing,” Gibbs says. “Women's friendships tend to have a more emotional content -- listening to friends' stories and coming up with helpful solutions."

WebMD Feature

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini, DO, MS on April 20, 2016

Long Life

After 60: 4 Things You Need to Know
By Katherine Tweed
WebMD Feature

Keeping a healthy weight is a worthwhile goal at any age. As you get older, it can get trickier.

You might not be burning calories like you did when you were younger, but you can still take off extra pounds.

The golden rules of weight loss still apply:

Burn more calories than you eat or drink.
Eat more veggies, fruits, whole grains, fish, beans, and low-fat or fat-free dairy; and keep meat and poultry lean.
Limit empty calories, like sugars and foods with little or no nutritional value.
Avoid fad diets because the results don't last.

1. Stay Strong

You lose muscle mass as you age. Offset that by doing strength training. You can use weight machines at a gym, lighter weights you hold in your hands, or your own body weight for resistance like in yoga or Pilates. Keeping your muscle mass is key to burning more calories, says Joanna Li, RD, a nutritionist at Foodtrainers in New York.

2. Eat More Protein

Because you're at risk for losing muscle mass, make sure your diet includes about one gram of protein to every kilogram (2.2 pounds) of body weight. "Protein also keeps you full for longer, so that helps with weight loss efforts," Li says. She recommends wild salmon, whole eggs, organic whey protein powder, and grass-fed beef.

3. Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate

Drink plenty of water. Sometimes, thirst masks itself as hunger. As you get older, you may not be as quick to notice when you're thirsty, Li says. She says you should get 64 ounces of water a day. You can drink it or get part of it from foods that are naturally rich in water, such as cucumbers and tomatoes. If you're not sure if you're getting enough water, check your urine: It should be pale yellow.

4. Outsmart Your Metabolism

Eat more small meals and snacks, and don't go much longer than 3 hours without eating. "Because your metabolism is already slow, if you're starving yourself, it just gets slower," Li says. You may need fewer calories than you did when you were younger. Ask your doctor or a registered dietitian about that. "If you're eating the same way you did when you were 25, you're definitely going to be gaining," Li says.


I woke at 3AM and fell back to sleep and dreamed of a kernel of popcorn that fell under the chair. I reached for it and woke up.

When Poets Write Prose

When the poets write prose I get weak at the knees. The comparison might be stopping in at Jacques Pepin's kitchen for a sandwich. Through his experience it would be the best sandwich in the universe.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Silver Top Diner for Sale

We need this up in Woonsocket.

hallucinations, delirium, depression and psychosis


Carfentanil Deadly and Overwhelming


Corporate Submission

Benevolent defiance.

Sunday Morning

This morning a man driving a bright yellow ATV was doing wheelies on Clinton Street with his pants down. Wow!

Developmentally Stuck

Many times when I am working with people in therapy who are developmentally stuck, they end up sharing that, as children, they were the person their parent turned to as a confidant or for emotional support. Children put in this position may feel special or privileged because the parent is sharing adult information with them and/or is looking to them for support, creating a sense of closeness. However, given that the child’s needs are ignored in favor of the parent’s, there can be devastating long-term developmental consequences.

Walk to School

“[Japanese] kids learn early on that, ideally, any member of the community can be called on to serve or help others,” he says.

Many city children continue to take the train to school and run errands in their neighborhood without close supervision.

By giving them this freedom, parents are placing significant trust not only in their kids, but in the whole community. “Plenty of kids across the world are self-sufficient,” Dixon observes. “But the thing that I suspect Westerners are intrigued by [in Japan] is the sense of trust and cooperation that occurs, often unspoken or unsolicited.”


Opioid Crisis


the opposite of addiction is not sobriety. It is human connection.

We have talked exclusively about individual recovery from addiction. We need now to talk about social recovery — how we all recover, together, from the sickness of isolation that is sinking on us like a thick fog.

But this new evidence isn’t just a challenge to us politically. It doesn’t just force us to change our minds. It forces us to change our hearts.

Loving an addict is really hard. When I looked at the addicts I love, it was always tempting to follow the tough love advice doled out by reality shows like Intervention — tell the addict to shape up, or cut them off. Their message is that an addict who won’t stop should be shunned. It’s the logic of the drug war, imported into our private lives. But in fact, I learned, that will only deepen their addiction — and you may lose them altogether. I came home determined to tie the addicts in my life closer to me than ever — to let them know I love them unconditionally, whether they stop, or whether they can’t.

When I returned from my long journey, I looked at my ex-boyfriend, in withdrawal, trembling on my spare bed, and I thought about him differently. For a century now, we have been singing war songs about addicts. It occurred to me as I wiped his brow, we should have been singing love songs to them all along.

The full story of Johann Hari’s journey — told through the stories of the people he met — can be read in Chasing The Scream: The First and Last Days of the War on Drugs, published by Bloomsbury




William Faulkner

"I believe that man will not merely endure: he will prevail. He is immortal, not because he alone among creatures has an inexhaustible voice, but because he has a soul, a spirit capable of compassion and sacrifice and endurance. The poet's, the writer's duty is to write about these things. ... The poet's voice need not merely be the record of man, it can be one of the props, the pillars to help him endure and prevail."

"It is my ambition to be, as a private individual, abolished and voided from history, leaving it markless, no refuse save the printed books; I wish I had had enough sense to see ahead thirty years ago and, like some of the Elizabethans, not signed them. It is my aim, and every effort bent, that the sum and history of my life, which in the same sentence is my obit and epitaph too, shall be them both: he made the books, and he died."

-William Faulkner, in his Nobel Prize acceptance speech

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Mass. High Court Says Black Men May Have Legitimate Reason To Flee Police



Mass. High Court Says Black Men May Have Legitimate Reason To Flee Police
September 20, 2016
By Zeninjor Enwemeka

Black men who try to avoid an encounter with Boston police by fleeing may have a legitimate reason to do so — and should not be deemed suspicious — according to a ruling by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court.

Citing Boston police data and a 2014 report by the ACLU of Massachusetts that found blacks were disproportionately stopped by the city's police, the state’s highest court on Tuesday threw out the gun conviction of Jimmy Warren.

Warren was arrested on Dec. 18, 2011, by police who were investigating a break-in in Roxbury. Police had been given a description of the suspects as three black men — one wearing a “red hoodie,” one wearing a “black hoodie” and the other wearing “dark clothing.” An officer later spotted Warren and another man (both wearing dark clothing) walking near a park. When the officer approached the men, they ran. Warren was later arrested and searched. No contraband was found on him, but police recovered an unlicensed .22 caliber firearm in a nearby yard. Warren was charged with unlawful possession of a firearm and later convicted.

In its ruling, the court made two major findings: The justices said police didn’t have the right to stop Warren in the first place, and the fact that he ran away shouldn’t be used against him.

On the first point, the court said the description of the break-in suspects’ clothing was “vague,” making it impossible for police to “reasonably and rationally” target Warren or any other black man wearing dark clothing as a suspect. The court said the “ubiquitous” clothing description and the officer’s "hunch" wasn’t enough to justify the stop.

"Lacking any information about facial features, hairstyles, skin tone, height, weight, or other physical characteristics, the victim's description 'contribute[d] nothing to the officers' ability to distinguish the defendant from any other black male' wearing dark clothes and a 'hoodie' in Roxbury."

On the second point, the court noted that state law gives individuals the right to not speak to police and even walk away if they aren’t charged with anything. The court said when an individual does flee, the action doesn't necessarily mean the person is guilty. And when it comes to black men, the BPD and ACLU reports “documenting a pattern of racial profiling of black males in the city of Boston” must be taken into consideration, the court said.

"We do not eliminate flight as a factor in the reasonable suspicion analysis whenever a black male is the subject of an investigatory stop. However, in such circumstances, flight is not necessarily probative of a suspect's state of mind or consciousness of guilt. Rather, the finding that black males in Boston are disproportionately and repeatedly targeted for FIO [Field Interrogation and Observation] encounters suggests a reason for flight totally unrelated to consciousness of guilt. Such an individual, when approached by the police, might just as easily be motivated by the desire to avoid the recurring indignity of being racially profiled as by the desire to hide criminal activity. Given this reality for black males in the city of Boston, a judge should, in appropriate cases, consider the report's findings in weighing flight as a factor in the reasonable suspicion calculus."

The SJC concluded that police lacked reasonable suspicion for an investigatory stop in this case.

Matthew Segal, the legal director of the ACLU of Massachusetts, called the decision "a powerful ruling" that demonstrates what role courts can play in addressing community concerns about policing.

"The state’s highest court, in talking about people of color, it’s saying that their lives matter and under the law, their views matter," Segal said. "The reason that’s significant is that all the time in police-civilian encounters there are disputes about what is suspicious and what is not suspicious. So this is an opinion that looks at those encounters through the eyes of a black man who might justifiably be concerned that he will be the victim of profiling."

The ACLU's report found that between 2007 and 2010, 63 percent of Boston police encounters were with blacks, though at that time the city's black population was just 24 percent. Notably, the report said that taking into account high-crime neighborhoods did not explain the disparity.

Boston Police Commissioner Bill Evans blasted the SJC ruling and said he was "troubled" the court cited the ACLU report, which he called "heavily tainted against the police department."

"I think they relied heavily on an ACLU report that I think was clearly way out of context," Evans told reporters Tuesday. "I’m a little disappointed that they relied heavily on a report that didn’t take into context who was stopped and why. That report clearly shows that we were targeting the individuals that were driving violence in the city and the hot spots."

The SJC ruling also cited the Boston Police Department's own analysis, which found blacks were 8 percent more likely to be stopped repeatedly and 12 percent more likely to be searched and frisked even when controlling for factors like criminal history, gang affiliation and violent crime areas.

Evans said the department's report found there was no indication of bias. The department's report did outline steps to ensure fair stops, including increased training on racial profiling and unconscious bias.

The SJC ruling comes a week after the launch of a long-awaited police body camera pilot program in Boston -- a program many, including Segal, see as a positive step toward police accountability and transparency. Body cameras have been part of a larger national conversation on policing since the 2014 fatal shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and other high-profile police shootings of unarmed black men across the country.

WBUR's Delores Handy contributed reporting.

AG Kilmartin Files Antitrust Lawsuit Against Makers of Opioid Addiction Treatment Drug Suboxone

Press Releases

AG Kilmartin Files Antitrust Lawsuit Against Makers of Opioid Addiction Treatment Drug Suboxone

Rhode Island Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin and 35 other attorneys general today filed an antitrust lawsuit against the makers of Suboxone, a prescription drug used to treat opioid addiction, over allegations that the companies engaged in a scheme to block generic competitors and cause purchasers to pay artificially high prices.

Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals, now known as Indivior, is accused of conspiring with MonoSol Rx to switch Suboxone from a tablet version to a film (that dissolves in the mouth) in order to prevent or delay generic alternatives and maintain monopoly profits.

The companies are accused of violating state and federal antitrust laws.

"While Rhode Island and the nation continue to struggle with the opioid abuse and addiction crisis, the makers of Suboxone are more concerned with protecting their profits," said Attorney General Kilmartin. "We know Suboxone helps with the addiction of opioids, and can be a lifesaving drug for those who are struggling with addiction, but it is expensive. It is reprehensible for the manufacturer to purposefully delay allowing generics to come to market when people are dying from addiction."

Suboxone is a brand-name prescription drug used to treat heroin addiction and other opioid addictions by easing addiction cravings. No generic alternative is currently available.

According to the lawsuit, when Reckitt introduced Suboxone in 2002 (in tablet form), it had exclusivity protection that lasted for seven years, meaning no generic version could enter the market during that time. Before that period ended, however, Reckitt worked with MonoSol to create a new version of Suboxone – a dissolvable film, similar in size to a breath strip. Over time, Reckitt allegedly converted the market away from the tablet to the film through marketing, price adjustments, and other methods. Ultimately, after the majority of Suboxone prescriptions were written for the film, Reckitt removed the tablet from the U.S. market.

The attorneys general allege that this conduct was illegal "product hopping," where a company makes modest changes to its product to extend patent protections so other companies can't enter the market and offer cheaper generic alternatives. According to the suit, the Suboxone film provided no real benefit over the tablet and Reckitt continued to sell the tablets in other countries even after removing them from the U.S. market. Reckitt also allegedly expressed unfounded safety concerns about the tablet version and intentionally delayed FDA approval of generic versions of Suboxone.

As a result, the attorneys general allege that consumers and purchasers have paid artificially high monopoly prices since late 2009, when generic alternatives of Suboxone might otherwise have become available. During that time, annual sales of Suboxone topped $1 billion.

The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern Division of Pennsylvania, accuses the companies of violating the federal Sherman Act and state laws. Counts include conspiracy to monopolize and illegal restraint of trade. In the suit, the attorneys general ask the court to stop the companies from engaging in anticompetitive conduct, to restore competition, and to order appropriate relief for consumers and the states, plus costs and fees.

Related links

Department or agency: Department of the Attorney General
Release date: 09-22-2016


Boxing Gloves

The Mohawk kids are boxing with red and blue gloves out in the parking lot.

A Flattering Costume

Last winter I saw one of the characters in my town, a homeless man who hangs out downtown, wearing a gorgeous A-line black 1940's full length coat designed for a woman. It was stunning. I have been thinking about how I'd like to find or even attempt to sew a coat like this for winter. I like wearing a flattering costume. It makes me feel good about facing the public. Over the summer I have worn dresses my neighbor gave me and a big straw hat.


I want to give a speech about why I love Woonsocket. I might just post it on my blog but it is a goal of mine.

Because I am fulfilled I can play an interesting role as a resident in the city, a role which is slowly being revealed to me.

Burkinis don’t threaten our freedoms — laws that ban them do

By Indira A.R. Lakshmanan

We all know France takes female couture seriously, but its fashion police are now armed, roaming the Riviera ordering women to strip down, and issuing fines. Yes, the nation that gave us liberté, égalité, fraternité (not to mention Brigitte Bardot and the bikini) is literally policing what we wear to the beach in the wrong-headed belief that forbidding women from covering up will somehow promote secular liberalism.


A retired police chief offers some practical advice based on long experience.

Good policy is not about locking up everyone; it’s about locking up the right ones.

Respect and Kindness

People follow the law when they believe authorities have the right to tell them what to do, and authorities earn that right by treating the public fairly and with respect.


adverse childhood experiences, or ACEs —

“A lot of people who have high ACE scores don’t realize that things that they, or others, thought were normal had hurt them,” said Stevens, who has experienced seven different forms of ACEs herself. “They weren’t born bad. But children tend to think magically. If they suffered emotional or physical abuse, they think they must have deserved it or caused it. And later, in the absence of healthy options, the way they cope with the pain, anxiety or shame is often by self-medicating. Nicotine is a great anti-anxiety medication, and the first prescription antidepressants were methamphetamines.”

Share Meals and Deep Conversation

Louise Dunlap, 78, has rented a studio apartment in a nine-unit cohousing community for the last six years. “Interdependence,” she says, “goes beyond turning the compost and fixing the washing machine.

I get a chance to share meals and deep conversations. There’s a kind of love that grows out of these connections — not romantic love, not family love, but something about our common humanity. I wish everyone could experience this.”

Proximity and regularity matter. A recent study found that most people report having only two close confidants with whom they have important discussions on a regular basis. It’s a lot easier to sit down next to someone at a weekly common meal and spontaneously troubleshoot how to handle a rude boss or health problem than it is to call an equally stressed friend in hopes that it is a moment when he or she can talk.


Fixes for Chronic Disease

America’s drug crisis, which now kills more people each day than car crashes or gun violence, has challenged the conventional wisdom about recovery. With addiction inside the homes of families who thought themselves immune, we are starting to embrace the idea that addiction is a not a character flaw but a chronic disease requiring long-term management — the subject of last week’s Fixes column.

This week, another idea whose time has come: trying to kick opioid addiction without medicines is as smart as relying on willpower to overcome diabetes or asthma. Medicines greatly increase the chance of success and reduce the risk of death.


"Scottie" Fitzgerald

"People who live entirely by the fertility of their imaginations are fascinating, brilliant and often charming, but they should be sat next to at dinner parties, not lived with."

Follow Canada's Lead

Addiction is a chronic, relapsing medical condition, not a lifestyle choice. Those disproportionately affected by it include people with mental illness, brain injury and histories of physical and sexual abuse. In the United States, inappropriate prescribing of opioid painkillers set many on the path to heroin addiction, a cheaper and more accessible alternative. Despite vast investments, law enforcement has failed to keep heroin and other illicit drugs out of the hands of vulnerable addicts.
The Opinion Pages | Op-Ed Contributor
U.S. Should Follow Canada’s Lead on Heroin Treatment


VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA — The crisis that led officials in Ithaca, N.Y., to consider opening a supervised-injection center for heroin users, part of what the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has called a national epidemic of overdose deaths, is sadly familiar to us here.

Overdose deaths and H.I.V. infection among injection drug users were so high nearly 20 years ago that Vancouver declared a public health emergency. With open drug use and needles discarded in the streets of downtown Vancouver, we responded in 2003 by opening North America’s first supervised-injection center for heroin and other injection drugs.

Clients come to the center, called Insite, with drugs they’ve obtained. Using clean equipment, including syringes, that the center provides, they can inject themselves in one of 13 booths under the supervision of nurses. Those nurses can help them immediately if they overdose.

This model has been a demonstrable success, preventing overdose deaths and reducing rates of H.I.V. infection, while helping some of the most marginalized members of our community get addiction treatment and other important health services.

But despite these achievements, no other city in Canada or the United States has followed Vancouver’s lead. Political ideology, the illicit nature of injection drugs and a profound misunderstanding of addiction have resulted in thousands of preventable deaths every year in both countries.

Addiction is a chronic, relapsing medical condition, not a lifestyle choice. Those disproportionately affected by it include people with mental illness, brain injury and histories of physical and sexual abuse. In the United States, inappropriate prescribing of opioid painkillers set many on the path to heroin addiction, a cheaper and more accessible alternative. Despite vast investments, law enforcement has failed to keep heroin and other illicit drugs out of the hands of vulnerable addicts.

Those opposed to harm-reduction services like Insite worry that providing a place for safe injection drug use will make it more socially acceptable and lead to more addicts. But research shows the opposite to be true in Vancouver; illicit drug use here has declined since the center opened, and use of alcohol and marijuana among high school students is also down.

Others argue that public funding should be spent on addiction treatment, not harm-reduction services. The truth is that both are needed — addiction is a complex condition, with no easy cure. In Vancouver we invest at least 10 times more resources in addiction treatment than harm reduction, and research on new approaches to treatment is always underway. Harm reduction — helping people even as they use drugs — is needed to keep users alive long enough to give them the chance to be treated. Prevention is also important, but again, there is no simple solution.

While we continue to develop strategies to prevent and treat addiction, what is clear is that opioid and heroin overdose deaths are preventable. The drug Naloxone, which blocks the effects of heroin, is a safe, inexpensive antidote when someone is available to administer it, as is the case at Insite.

Over the last 13 years, millions of injections have occurred at Insite and there have been no deaths. The United States would be wise to make this service available to all who need it.

Patricia Daly is the vice president for public health and the chief medical health officer of Vancouver Coastal Health, a publicly funded regional health authority, which runs Insite.

Ithaca's Anti Heroin Plan


Yin and Yang

We have an adorable group of kids in the neighborhood now and they are all about the same age. It's ideal for them. Yesterday I heard the goinky goinky of the pogo stick. Kids were riding in the parking lots on bikes and coming to the fence to throw sticks for Lily to fetch. When the parking lots become parks for the kids we feel the happiness.
When the drug dealers take over the parking lots everyone hides inside.

Why I Wake Early

If you wake really early you have many hours of magic time. The world is asleep. The play has not begun yet. The clock is ticking and the radio opera is playing. The world is your oyster, especially this time of year. What I call woosh season. We can slow down time by walking up 4 hours ahead. When I get weary at three in the afternoon, I take a swim but I am asleep for the night at 8PM just like when I was 12.

Found Art

The painting we found on a slab of granite at the bus stop has become part of our dining room. The sincerity of it is what makes it so fun to look at. Unpretentious sincerity. This is what I see all around my little City. This is what has me fascinated by the people of Woonsocket.

They Feel Helpless and Trapped

I spoke to Joanne my retired nurse friend and she had some great insight. She said people who have no control and feel trapped have to control the smallest thing with all of their might. She told the story of Mrs Johnson who continually rang the nurses station to have her tissue box moved. This helped me understand why people in my life have behaved in small and controlling ways.

Elephant Tranquilizer Could Be Linked to Wave of Heroin Overdoses in Midwest

Elephant Tranquilizer Could Be Linked to Wave of Heroin Overdoses in Midwest


A drug commonly used to tranquilize elephants and other large animals has been surfacing in supplies of heroin in Ohio, officials say. Credit Ben Curtis/Associated Press

Officials across the country are grappling with waves of heroin-related overdoses and deaths this year, an epidemic blamed on heroin mixed with fentanyl, an opiate estimated to be 100 times as strong as morphine.

But officials in the Cincinnati area and in southern Indiana say that a synthetic drug, carfentanil — 10,000 times as potent as morphine — could be tied to at least 189 overdoses across both states in the past week, resulting in at least four deaths in the states.

In the Cincinnati area alone, there were more than 78 overdoses reported between Tuesday and Wednesday, according to a report from The Cincinnati Enquirer. In the same time span, at least 15 overdoses, one of them fatal, were rippling through two neighboring counties in Indiana, some 90 miles away.

It was not immediately clear if the cases in the two states were connected or if carfentanil was, in fact, the culprit, but for weeks officials in Ohio have been warning the public that carfentanil is showing up in local supplies of heroin.
What is carfentanil?

The drug, a cousin of fentanyl, is used to tranquilize large animals like elephants.
Why do officials think carfentanil may be related to these cases?

Officials in Ohio and Indiana noticed that more people are needing more doses of the antidote Narcan, or naloxone, in order to survive an overdose.

This “usually goes hand in hand” with the presence of carfentanil, Lt. Tom Fallon of the Hamilton County Heroin Task Force in Ohio said on Friday.

Chief Bill Abbott of the police in Seymour, Ind., said Friday that another indicator was that the people who overdosed in Indiana were unresponsive with shallow breathing — in some cases, the users’ lips were turning blue.

People with similar symptoms were reported to be overdosing in Jennings County.

“If the person can tell us what they’ve taken, we won’t normally use it,” he said of naloxone. “It’s used in what we consider a life-threatening state.”

Chief Abbott said that when Michael Purvis, 34, overdosed in a home in Seymour on Tuesday, he needed four doses of naloxone. One dose is considered typical.

Mr. Purvis, who was among three people who overdosed in the house, was arrested and charged with dealing a controlled substance, according to a report from RTV6, an ABC affiliate in Indianapolis.
What else could’ve caused the surge in overdoses?

Both Lieutenant Fallon and Chief Abbott said that it was too early to tell if carfentanil is behind the overdoses, or if the cases are linked. The cause could also be related to dealers’ selling pure fentanyl to people who are think they are buying heroin.

“To me, it’s irrelevant,” Chief Abbot said, “because they’re both extremely powerful pain medicines.”
Where are these drugs coming from?

The police in Indiana and Ohio don’t know, and say only limited samples of the drug were recovered for testing. Melvin Patterson, a Drug Enforcement Administration spokesman in Washington, told The Cincinnati Enquirer that in the past, carfentanil had been traced to Chinese manufacturers who ship the drug through Mexico and into the United States.

“It’s such a restricted drug there’s only a handful of places in the United States that can have it,” Mr. Patterson said.

Lieutenant Fallon said that fentanyl is much easier for people to get access to and to manufacture than carfentanil.

“You don’t have to wait for a poppy plant to mature when you can just hire a chemist and develop some of these substitutes for heroin in a back-alley chemist lab,” he said.
Rayshon LaCarlos Alexander Credit Franklin County Sheriff's Office, via Associated Press

The police say that mass overdoses are often linked to one bad batch. Last month, one batch was tied to 11 overdoses and two deaths in the Columbus area, the Ohio police told The Columbus Dispatch.

Rayshon Alexander, 36, was later arrested and accused of selling people pure carfentanil, The Associated Press reported. He has been charged with murder.
How are officials responding?

In Ohio, Lieutenant Fallon said that the police were trying to work with addiction specialists to visit the homes of people who had recently overdosed. Sometimes, those people want help, and other times they don’t, he said.

He also said that police agencies in the area have been given naloxone to administer it themselves before paramedics show up.

Lieutenant Fallon said that “any police agency that wanted Narcan got it. The cops get there way before the paramedics.”

Overdoses can Kill in Doses Smaller than a Snowflake

Drug Linked to Ohio Overdoses Can Kill in Doses Smaller than a Snowflake


John Hatmaker last week in the backyard of his grandparents’ home in Norwood, Ohio. Mr. Hatmaker is one of more than 200 people to overdose in the Cincinnati area in the past two weeks. Credit Ty Wright for The New York Times

CINCINNATI — On the day he almost died, John Hatmaker bought a packet of Oreos and some ruby-red Swedish Fish at the corner store for his 5-year-old son. He was walking home when he spotted a man who used to sell him heroin.

Mr. Hatmaker, 29, had overdosed seven times in the four years he had been addicted to pain pills and heroin. But he hoped he was past all that. He had planned to spend that Saturday afternoon, Aug. 27, showing his son the motorcycles and enjoying the music at a prayer rally for Hope Over Heroin in this region stricken by soaring rates of drug overdoses and opioid deaths.

But first, he decided as he palmed a sample folded into a square of paper, he would snort this.

As he crumpled to the sidewalk, Mr. Hatmaker became one of more than 200 people to overdose in the Cincinnati area in the past two weeks, leaving three people dead in what the officials here called an unprecedented spike. Similar increases in overdoses have rippled recently through Indiana, Kentucky and West Virginia, overwhelming ambulance crews and emergency rooms and stunning some antidrug advocates.

Addiction specialists said the sharp increases in overdoses were a grim symptom of America’s heroin epidemic, and of the growing prevalence of powerful synthetic opiates like fentanyl. The synthetics are often mixed into batches of heroin, or sprinkled into mixtures of caffeine, antihistamines and other fillers.

In Cincinnati, some medical and law enforcement officials said they believed the overdoses were largely caused by a synthetic drug called carfentanil, an animal tranquilizer used on livestock and elephants with no practical uses for humans. Fentanyl can be 50 times stronger than heroin, and carfentanil is as much as 100 times more potent than fentanyl. Experts said an amount smaller than a snowflake could kill a person.
A forensic drug analyst opened bags containing heroin last week at the Hamilton County Crime Laboratory in Cincinnati. Credit Ty Wright for The New York Times

Dr. Lakshmi Kode Sammarco, the coroner here in Hamilton County, said her office had determined that carfentanil was the cause of several recent overdose deaths, the first confirmed cases in the county. Investigators are now examining deaths back to early July to see if carfentanil was the cause.

“We’d never seen it before,” Dr. Sammarco said in an interview, while toxicologists and drug specialists on the third floor of the coroner’s office tested blood samples and small bags of white powder. “I’m really worried about this.”

Officials suspect the carfentanil is being manufactured in China or Mexico and is making its way to the Cincinnati area in heroin shipments that flow north on Interstates 71 and 75. The drug has shown up in Columbus, Ohio, the Gulf Coast of Florida and central Kentucky, according to local news reports.

Fentanyl is widely used in hospitals as a fast-acting painkiller, but Dr. Sammarco said carfentanil is rare. She said she had to call zoos, rural veterinarians, federal law enforcement authorities and a licensed manufacturer in Canada to find a sample that her office could use to calibrate their drug-testing equipment.

Around Cincinnati, police officers and sheriff’s deputies are so concerned about the potency of carfentanil and other synthetic opioids that they carry overdose-reversing naloxone sprays for themselves, in case they accidentally inhale or touch the tiniest flake.

Because of its potency, law enforcement agents have stopped field-testing the powders they find at the scenes of overdoses. When regional drug enforcement officers in Cincinnati pulled over two men on Aug. 26 and found an unknown pink substance, they sent it directly to the county coroner’s office; it tested positive for heroin, fentanyl and carfentanil.
An ambulance crew resuscitating a victim of a car crash who had overdosed on heroin on Friday in Colerain Township, Ohio. Credit Ty Wright for The New York Times

And as ambulance crews and the police rushed to respond to this recent wave of overdoses, answering 20 or 30 calls each day, they said they sometimes had to give people two, three or five doses of naloxone spray to revive them. Usually, one quick spray is enough to block a person’s opiate receptors and immediately jolt them out of an overdose. Some hospitals have had to give overdose patients intravenous drips of anti-opioid chemicals.

“Our antidote, our Narcan, is ineffective,” Sheriff Jim Neil of Hamilton County said, using a trade name for naloxone. “It was meant for heroin. It wasn’t meant for fentanyl or carfentanil.”

Like much of the country, officials here along the Ohio-Kentucky border have been straining to cope with the toll of opioid use.

Accidental drug overdose deaths in Hamilton County doubled to 414 last year from 204 in 2012, according to the county coroner, most of those involving fentanyl or heroin.

There were an average of 92 overdose reports each month during the first six months of 2016, up from an average of 40 during the last half of 2015, according to numbers collected by the Greater Cincinnati Fusion Center, a regional law enforcement and public health group.

As deaths mounted, officials formed anti-heroin coalitions and task forces. Police officers and addiction experts visited the homes of people who had overdosed to try to persuade them into treatment. The Cincinnati Enquirer even has a heroin beat reporter.
Doug Rolf, a medic with Colerain Township Fire Department Station 26, restocking medicine on Friday after responding to a heroin overdose in Colerain Township, Ohio. Credit Ty Wright for The New York Times

Nan Franks, the executive director of the Addiction Services Council, the Cincinnati affiliate of the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, said the problem was made worse by scarce bed space at the area’s lone publicly funded detox center and a constant lack of money for treatment services.

Ms. Franks said drugs were so cheap that addicts said they can walk through one housing project and get four free samples from dealers.

“People are waiting for treatment,” Ms. Franks said. “We need a better response to keep them safe.”

Five days after Mr. Hatmaker overdosed, a police car pulled up outside his home in Norwood, an independent city of 20,000 inside Cincinnati. Lt. Tom Fallon, the commander of the county’s heroin task force, was there to take Mr. Hatmaker to treatment.

As they drove, Mr. Hatmaker thought back to how he had gotten there. He said he started selling pain pills in 2012 after being laid off from his job at an online retailer’s warehouse, then started taking them, then turned to heroin. Cycles of withdrawal, jail and treatment followed. Some of his friends died or went to prison for selling drugs.

He said he does not remember much from this latest overdose — only waking in an ambulance and feeling the pain where medics had pounded his chest to keep him alive. The medics who saved him told him he was minutes from death, Mr. Hatmaker said.

“I’m tired of this,” he said. “I’m tired of overdosing; I’m tired of this life. Eventually, you’re just going to die.”

Why I love the Sober People

They are usually striving and not just abstaining. They have embraced their spiritual and communal self. They find out that they have a body and need to strengthen it. Many of my pals around the city will tell me they are ex drug users. They found me on a park bench, he said. I was 200 pounds, another one said. Here's a photo, a woman shows me.

In the locker room a woman tells me how she was addicted to Oxy. Now I workout she said laughing. But her daughter is struggling with anorexia so severe she has had several surgeries. It's heartbreaking.

Not everyone is ready to turn towards healing and that is the kicker. Watching friends walk off the pier.

Why Opiates? We are in Pain

I woke at 3:30 because that is the weekday time we get up. I'm listening to La Traviata on the Argentinian radio station sung by different people than I am used to. I love it.

Waking towards the day is enjoyable when I'm in transmit but it will be reversed when I go into winter receive mode. At those times morning is sheer hell and I race to the pool to swim myself up an inch and that's the best I can do for dispelling the emotional pain. That inch saves my life during those dark times.

I am thinking a lot about pain because I'd like to talk to the kids at the high school about emotions and art and sports and dancing and ways to avoid recreational drugs. We are in a time when one grain of a substance can cause an overdose just by touching it. That is Russian Roulette! I will I talk to the kids about pain and anxiety. Yes. The conversation needs to go towards the root of the problem. Our society is like Swiss Cheese. We have many holes.

Often it is the artists who end up exploring the dark corners of caves. This is why people are afraid to invite an artist to dinner. We will talk about all of those spider webs everyone is trying to sweep away. They get respun each night by those brilliant and clever spiders.

Last night my husband said remember when you had your first cup of tea and coffee and how you felt? Euphoric, free, powerful, invincible calm, happy, loved, creative, and content? Your mother said "No tea, no coffee" and your parents drove off to their weekend country house leaving you home alone. What did you do? You plugged in the coffee pot and made paintings all day and you danced around the big empty house.

Well that's what these kids feel about the stuff they find. So what are you going to say to them? Talk to them about pain and anxiety. No adults will talk to them about that. Then talk to them about writing and art and music and baking and swimming and all the ways you cope and honor your emotions. The side effects are you learn who you are and what you love doing in life and how to handle the complexities.

Can we do this without fear and threats? We must.

I have lost many childhood friends and relatives to drink drugs and suicide. I was blessed with a delicate system but nonetheless this problem is close to my heart. If we can inspire an alternative and educate (clear information is everything) we may save a life and even change our society.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Lionel Schriver

Will the left survive?

3AM Dream

I dreamed I was taking a sip of wine and got a terrible headache. I am allergic to wine, I said in the dream. I woke up with a terrible headache. It was 3:AM.

Public Health News: Supervision

Supervised Drug Consumption: Evidence-Based Public Health

President Obama proclaimed this week as Prescription Opioid and Heroin Epidemic Awareness Week. In the Proclamation he asks us to “pause to remember all we have lost” and “recognize the importance of raising awareness of the epidemic.” With more than 28,000 people lost every year to heroin and other opioid overdose, public awareness is no longer enough. It’s time for action. Every day this week Harm Reduction Coalition will be concentrating several different evidence-based public health interventions that are urgently needed to turn the tide on the opioid epidemic.

Research has demonstrated that modifying the environment in which drugs are used is critical for preventing overdose fatalities. Supervised rooms for drug consumption are an evidence-based public health response to reduce harms associated with drug use. There are around 90 supervised sites for drug consumption globally operating across 3 different continents (Europe, North America and Australia). These facilities provide safer environments for drug consumption, as an alternative to using in public parks, restaurant bathrooms, libraries, parking lots, and other public or semi-public settings. Models include both supervised injection facilities (SIFs) and supervised drug consumption rooms; both have been successful in reducing drug-related harms and preventing overdose fatalities in several countries, including Canada (link to InSite), but have not yet adopted in the United States.

“The argument for safe spaces is that it’s better for both users and the public to have (people) injecting indoors in a place where they won’t die, rather than in a high-risk place like a park, alley, sidewalk, or indoors alone. In addition to providing sterile needles, staff members at safe injection sites typically carry the overdose antidote naloxone.” (Vice News)

The prescription opioid and heroin epidemic has propelled new interests in innovative public health strategies to prevent overdose fatalities and reduce drug-related harms such as HIV and viral hepatitis. Last week a county heroin task force in Washington state released a 100-page report which included a recommendation that Seattle-King County pilot at least 2 supervised rooms for drug consumption, which would be a first for the United States. The report’s rationale was to:

“offer a supervised place for hygienic consumption of drugs in a non-judgmental environment free from stigma, while providing low-barrier access to on-site health services and screenings, referrals, and linkages to behavioral health and other supportive services (for example, housing)” (King County Heroin and Prescription Opiate Addiction Task Force).

The model proposed for Seattle aims to engage individuals who use drugs and provide them multiple services and supports to reduce drug-related harm, including overdose fatalities, and to ultimately improve health outcomes. The proposal for Seattle is congruent with established models in Canada, Australia, Germany and several other European countries. These sites have been extensively evaluated and have demonstrated public health benefits for both people who use drugs and the wider community.

In late 2015 Harm Reduction Coalition convened a consultation with international law enforcement and public health experts to understand the local dynamics shaping the establishment and implementation supervised spaces for drug consumption. The consultation found that:

People who use supervised sites take better care of themselves, reduce or eliminate their needle sharing, use their drugs more safely, and ultimately reduce their drug use.

Participants to these sites gain access to other medical and social services and entry into drug treatment;

There has not been a single overdose death in any of these programs over many years of operation and many thousands supervised of injections;

The sites do not increase drug use in the area, nor do they encourage young people to initiate drug use;

Crime and public nuisance decrease in the areas around these programs.

As overdose rates show no signs of slowing across the country, we need to consider bold evidence-based public health interventions that are effective in preventing overdose fatalities, reducing drug-related harms and providing gateways to health care, treatment and support.

Next week more than 30 thought leaders around the country will convene in Baltimore, MD for a think tank focused on supervised injection facilities hosted by Project Inform. Harm Reduction Coalition has been part of the planning committee and will be participating in this important meeting. The goal of the think tank is to develop a national coordinated effort that drives public policy in support of SIFs.

The conversation on supervised consumption will continue at the 11th National Harm Reduction Conference in San Diego in November.

Read the report: Alternatives to Public Injecting.

That's the Well You Draw From


Tribal Damage vs Peer Damage

When I look around I see people who have had peer damage in school but the hardest challenge is dealing with tribal damage from your original family. It's possible to overcome but it is a deep and lifelong challenge.

Apple Schlumf!

A friend gave me a bushel of reject apples she rescued from her New Hampshire neighbor's orchard compost. I am going to make apple schlumpf which is apple Betty. In Woonsocket Betty is schlumfy.

Cowardly Lion

"The Wizard of Oz" (1939)

The Cowardly Lion On Courage

Cowardly Lion:

Courage. What makes a King out of a slave? Courage.

What makes the flag on the mast to wave? Courage.

What makes the elephant charge his tusk in the misty mist or the dusky dusk?

What makes the muskrat guard his musk? Courage.

What makes the Sphinx the 7th Wonder? Courage.

What makes the dawn come up like THUNDER?! Courage.

What makes the Hottentot so hot?

What puts the "ape" in ape-ricot?

Whatta they got that I ain't got?

Dorothy & Friends: Courage!

Cowardly Lion: You can say that again.


I will Miss Obama's Voice and Speeches

I will miss having a handsome amazing speaker and writer for a president.

Woonsocket Paper Dolls

I love this idea.

Woonsocket Royalty and Loyalty

Yesterday I had the privilege and honor to witness Woonsocket royalty and loyalty at Saint Anne's Church. Our new Chief Thomas Oates was sworn in by Mayor Lisa Baldelli-Hunt and his lovely wife Laurie pinned on his badge. There were speeches of gratitude and a procession of bagpipes. I felt like I was in a movie. We have so much to be PROUD of!

What a fashion show. We need a book of paper dolls of Woonsocket City officials. (laughing but I do love the idea!)

Marc Levitt Triple Decker Life: Share your Stories!

Fantastic project by the amazing and brilliant Marc Levitt.

A Community Teacher

I don't have children but I love young people and elderly people and middle aged people. I guess it's fair to say I love people. As long as I have ample solitude I enjoy feasting on peoples stories. My dog taught me this. My LIFE taught me this. My City taught me this. I hope to always be on the learning train.

I tell the kids I hated school but I loved learning. There's a HUGE difference! I hate drugs but I love to generate my innate natural optimism from walking or long distance swimming or marathon dancing.

I DO get the blues real bad but that is just another phase of the moon. Another teacher.

If I was happy all the time I might have a different career. I'd be somebody else. I am melancholic seasonal wholesome yet not naive artist. I run towards things that scare me. I'm not sure why or where that comes from.

Open-Sesame Noodles

New York Times Classic
Takeout-Style Sesame Noodles
Sam Sifton

Yield4 servings Time10 minutes

Eddie Schoenfeld, the affable yarn-spinner and restaurateur who opened Red Farm in the West Village and on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, is also one of New York's finest practitioners of Chinese cuisine. In 2007, he helped The Times drill down into the taste history of sesame noodles in America, and specifically to the ones made and sold by Shorty Tang at the restaurant Hwa Yuan on East Broadway. Soft and luxurious, bathed in an emulsified mixture of sesame paste and peanut butter, rendered vivid and fiery by chili oil and sweetened by sugar, then cut by vinegar, this version brings home what used to be classic New York takeout. “The art is in the balance,” Mr. Schoenfeld said at the time, “between the salt and sweet, the sweet and the fire, and the fire and the acidity.”


1 pound Chinese egg noodles (1/8-inch-thick), frozen or (preferably) fresh, available in Asian markets
2 tablespoons sesame oil, plus a splash
3 ½ tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons Chinese rice vinegar
2 tablespoons Chinese sesame paste
1 tablespoon smooth peanut butter
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon finely grated ginger
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 teaspoons chili-garlic paste, or to taste
Half a cucumber, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/8-inch by 1/8-inch by 2-inch sticks
¼ cup chopped roasted peanuts


Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add noodles and cook until barely tender, about 5 minutes; they should retain a hint of chewiness. Drain, rinse with cold water, drain again and toss with a splash of sesame oil.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the remaining 2 tablespoons sesame oil, the soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame paste, peanut butter, sugar, ginger, garlic and chili-garlic paste.
Pour the sauce over the noodles and toss. Transfer to a serving bowl, and garnish with cucumber and peanuts.


The Chinese sesame paste called for here is made of toasted sesame seeds; it is not the same as tahini, the Middle Eastern paste made of plain, untoasted sesame. But you could use tahini in a pinch. You need only add a little toasted sesame oil to compensate for flavor, and perhaps some peanut butter to keep the sauce emulsified.

Longterm Relationships


1940's Build

I remember when I found my first vintage clothes at the Earthen Vessel thrift shop. I was 18 years old and I realized I had a 1940's build.

Hyacynth Bouquet

Hyacinth Bucket (Patricia Routledge)— who insists her surname is pronounced Bouquet (although in reality, her husband Richard has said, "It was always 'Bucket' until I met you!")[4] — is an over-bearing, social-climbing snob, originally from a poor working-class background, whose main mission in life is to impress others with her lifestyle and perceived affluence and refinement. She's terrified that her background will be revealed, and goes to great lengths to hide it. Hyacinth likes to spend her days visiting stately homes (convinced she will meet and strike up a friendship with the upper class owners, especially if they are aristocratic) and hosting "executive-style" candlelight suppers (with her Royal Worcester double-glazed Avignon china and Royal Doulton china with "the hand-painted periwinkles").[5] She ostentatiously brags about her possessions to others, including her "white slimline telephone with automatic redial," which she always answers with "The Bouquet residence, the lady of the house speaking."[6] (Frequently she receives calls asking for a Chinese take-away, making her very angry.) She speaks in an exaggerated RP-like accent with Northern undertones, while her relatives speak in broad Northern accents. Her neighbours speak in milder RP accents. When flustered, Hyacinth regresses to her native Northern accent for a while.

Anne Lamott

If people wanted you to write warmly about them, the should've behaved better.
-Anne Lamott

Three things to learn from Anne Lamott

Anne Lamott wrote one of the most beloved writing book of all times, Bird by Bird, but she has also had great success as a writer of memoirs. Writing memoir often means writing about family and other real people. Lamott’s honesty and self-deprecating humour are instructive to any writer interested in tackling the memoir form. Here are three things you can learn about writing memoir from Lamott:

Lighten the story with humour when dealing with angsty themes

In her first memoir, Operating Instructions: A Story of My Son’s First Year, Lamott’s is unashamed to share her anxieties with her readers:

I have these secret pangs of shame about being single, like I wasn’t good enough to get a husband.

With humour, she tackles her own foibles:

I’m probably just as good a mother as the next repressed, obsessive-compulsive paranoiac.

Memoir is about exposing ourselves, and Lamott displays a rare courage as she lets the reader into her day-to-day life as a single mother and the ways in which the sudden life change leaves her alternately depressed and euphoric.
2. Write as though you’re talking to your best friend

Lamott also has a unique voice, one that is wry and sometimes sarcastic but ultimately kind. Readers engage with her because she sounds like the best friend we wish we all had; in Bird by Bird she reminds us that sure, we might know one person who produces perfect first drafts, but she surely lacks a rich inner life. She reminds us with humour of the ways in which we try to compensate for our own worries about our inadequacy with jealousy toward others. There is a sense in her books of deep humanity and acceptance for the imperfections of herself and others.
3.Don’t make it about getting even

Some memoirs have famously attracted negative attention because the families and loved ones of the memoir writer have felt themselves wrongly portrayed and attacked in print. Lamott has never set out to pen a misery memoir about her own triumph over the terrible thing others have done to her. She writes unflinchingly of her own shortcomings combined with a gentle compassion toward herself and others. Nothing is off-limits to Lamott from her struggles with alcoholism to her strong religious faith.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

More About the Headless Women

Headless women are disconnected at the neck. My friend Joanne says "Their heads are disconnected from the heart!"
I realize she is correct.

Addictive Obsessive Indoctrinating Society

Breakout and examine your beliefs. It's the only way to re-groove. Have the COURAGE to explore.

Stopping Work to WORKOUT is Good


Panic and Boundaries

I panic in groups and I panic when I fear my boundaries might be violated. This is why I am very SLOW to join groups or organizations. That said my City has a lot of organizations that I am SLOWLY joining. My passion is drug prevention. I was blessed with a delicate non addictive system and a refusal to be indoctrinated but I have lost many artist friends to drugs, alcohol and suicide.

Waking at 3:15 AM

I wake up thinking. As long as I am in transmit-mode I wake early. But I will be switching over to receive mode in the next few weeks. When November hits I will be quiet through December. I am trying to make plans while I can. Walking and swimming are my ways to think: calm down or lift up. Behind my smile are many hours of solitude. I am not nearly as social as I appear.

Indian Grocery on Diamond Hill Road

India Mart  
Indian Grocery Store
Address: 1551 Diamond Hill Rd #3, Woonsocket, RI 02895
Phone:(401) 762-0222
Hours: Open today Thursday· 2–8PM
We sell Indian groceries including vegetables, masalas, frozen foods, and snacks.
History: Established in 2016. This business has been established to cater to the needs of all the Indian population in and around Woonsocket, Cumberland, Bellingham and for all the people who love Indian food.Meet the Business Owner Nagendra T. Previously owned Indian store in Colorado.

Chasing the Dragon: Talk to your Children!

Last night there was an open panel discussion in City Hall after we watched Chasing the Dragon. We are very fortunate to have so many compassionate and informed people working to prevent opiate overdose deaths in our community. This is an epidemic and we can't do it alone. Talk to your children!

I LOVE this!

Facing North

by Dan Gerber

Ninety billion galaxies in this one tiny universe—
a billion seconds make thirty-two years.

No matter how many ways we conceive it,
this generous wedge called Ursa Major
more than fills my sight.

But now, as I turn to put out the lights
and give my dog her bedtime cookie,
my eyes become the handle of the great Milky Way,
and carry it into the house.

- Dan Gerber, A Primer on Parallel Lives
© Copper Canyon Press, 2007.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

New Lebanese Restaurant soaks approximately 30,000 dry beans overnight

“Canned food is against my policy,” said Omer Abdallah,

Chasing the Dragon

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

"Chasing the dragon" (traditional Chinese: 追龍; simplified Chinese: 追龙; pinyin: zhuī lóng; Jyutping: zeoi1 lung4) is a slang phrase of Cantonese origin from Hong Kong referring to inhaling the vapor from a heated solution of morphine, heroin, oxycodone, opium, or ya ba (a pill containing caffeine and methamphetamine). The "chasing" occurs as the user gingerly keeps the liquid moving in order to keep it from overheating and burning up too quickly. The moving smoke is chased after with a tube through which the user inhales.

Such ingestion may pose less immediate danger to the user than injecting heroin, due to eliminating the risk of transmission of HIV, hepatitis, and other diseases through needle sharing, as well as the stress that injection puts on veins. A small puff can be inhaled as a method of gauging the strength of the heroin. Also, the lungs can act to filter out additional pollutants that otherwise would pass directly into the bloodstream; however, in any case, it is always harmful to expose the lungs to any kind of smoke and inhaling heroin itself may lead to toxic leukoencephalopathy.[1][2]

Sautéed Kale with Toasted Slivered Almonds

VT reader Jessica Mazius of West Bloomfield, Michigan, experiments with recipes, often using the produce that her local CSA in Yale, Michigan, delivers to her home. This kale recipe is a family favorite. If you can find it, try the kale variety known as dinosaur kale, which has a darker color and broader leaves than the more common variety.
Vegetarian Times recipe
1 bunch kale (about 1 lb.), well-rinsed
½ Tbs. sesame oil
½ Tbs. olive oil
½ cup toasted slivered almonds
Trim tough ends off kale leaves, and stack leaves on top of each other. Slice stack crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick strips. Set aside, without drying leaves.
Heat both oils in a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat for about 1 minute. Add kale to skillet, cover for 30 seconds so kale wilts slightly, and uncover to sauté for about 3 minutes, or until leaves turn dark green and just tender. Remove from heat, sprinkle with almonds and salt, and serve.

Chicken Marbella

Submitted by nbgross
I don't know anyone who doesn't like this recipe - me, your mom, as well as many of my friends who really can't/don't cook - it's that simple!

This was the first main-course dish to be offered at The Silver Palate, and the distinctive colors and flavors of the prunes, olives and capers have kept it a favorite for years. It's good hot or at room temperature. When prepared with small drumsticks and wings, it makes a delicious hors d'oeuvre. The overnight marinating is essential to the moistness of the finished product: the chicken keeps and even improves over several days of refrigeration; it travels well and makes excellent picnic fare. Since Chicken Marbella is such a spectacular party dish, we give quantities to serve 10 to 12, but the recipe can be divided to make smaller amounts if you wish.
10-12 servings
4 chickens, 2 1/2 pounds each, quartered
1 head of garlic, peeled and finely pureed
1/4 cup dried oregano
coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
1 cup pitted prunes
1/2 cup pitted Spanish green olives
1/2 cup capers with a bit of juice
6 bay leaves
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup white wine
1/4 cup Italian parsley or fresh coriander (cilantro), finely chopped
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl combine chicken quarters, garlic, oregano, pepper and coarse salt to taste, vinegar, olive oil, prunes, olives, capers and juice, and bay leaves. Cover and let marinate, refrigerated, overnight. Arrange chicken in a single layer in one or two large, shallow baking pans and spoon marinade over it evenly. Sprinkle chicken pieces with brown sugar and pour white wine around them. Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, basting frequently with pan juices. Chicken is done when thigh pieces, pricked with a fork at their thickest, yield clear yellow (rather than pink) juice. With a slotted spoon transfer chicken, prunes, olives and capers to a serving platter. Moisten with a few spoonfuls of pan juices and sprinkle generously with parsley or cilantro. Pass remaining pan juices in a sauceboat. To serve Chicken Marbella cold, cool to room temperature in cooking juices before transferring to a serving platter. If chicken has been covered and refrigerated, allow it to return to room temperature before serving. Spoon some of the reserved juices over chicken.

Frozen Greek Yogurt

by Beckerkorn
"Greek yogurt with minted honey. Cold, smooth, and refreshing. Terrific for summer evenings. Garnish with mint sprigs, orange wheels, or strawberry slices. "

3 cups plain whole-milk Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon lemon juice
5 tablespoons honey
10 chopped fresh mint leaves
Add all ingredients to list

Stir together the yogurt and lemon juice until smooth in a freezer-safe metal bowl. Combine the honey and mint in a small bowl. Pour the honey on top of the yogurt, then give the yogurt a few quick stirs so that the honey forms "ribbons" in the yogurt but is not blended in completely. Cover bowl and freeze for 1 to 2 hours.

Home Made Pumpkin Yogurt Ice Cream

1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
1 1/2 cups low-fat plain Greek-style yogurt

1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

In a large bowl, mix together the pumpkin, yogurt, maple syrup, vanilla extract, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves until smooth. Refrigerate the mixture until thoroughly chilled; freeze in an ice cream freezer according to manufacturer's instructions. Pack the frozen yogurt into a sealed container, and freeze until serving time.

Woonsocket's First Universal Supper

In my dreams I would love to see the myriad of ethnicities living in my city represented in a banquet so we could taste the foods and share the conversation.

Indian Chicken Curry

Indian Chicken Curry II
by Amanda Fetters

"This is an adaptation of yellow chicken curry from India. The aromas and flavors are a delight to the senses! It is best served with fresh Naan bread and Jasmine or Basmati rice."


3 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons curry powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon paprika
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon grated fresh ginger root

1/2 teaspoon white sugar
salt to taste
2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cut into bite-size pieces
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 cup plain yogurt
3/4 cup coconut milk
1/2 lemon, juiced
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper


Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Saute onion until lightly browned. Stir in garlic, curry powder, cinnamon, paprika, bay leaf, ginger, sugar and salt. Continue stirring for 2 minutes. Add chicken pieces, tomato paste, yogurt, and coconut milk. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes.
Remove bay leaf, and stir in lemon juice and cayenne pepper. Simmer 5 more minutes.

Communal versus Tribal

Tribalism is potentially dangerous and harmful but being communal is about making healthy connections and relationships incorporating diversity.

Narcissistic Personality Disorder

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Narcissistic personality disorder is a mental disorder in which people have an inflated sense of their own importance, a deep need for admiration and a lack of empathy for others. But behind this mask of ultraconfidence lies a fragile self-esteem that's vulnerable to the slightest criticism.

A narcissistic personality disorder causes problems in many areas of life, such as relationships, work, school or financial affairs. You may be generally unhappy and disappointed when you're not given the special favors or admiration you believe you deserve. Others may not enjoy being around you, and you may find your relationships unfulfilling.

Narcissistic personality disorder treatment is centered around talk therapy (psychotherapy).
By Mayo Clinic Staff

Narcissistic personality disorder is one of several types of personality disorders. Personality disorders are conditions in which people have traits that cause them to feel and behave in socially distressing ways, limiting their ability to function in relationships and other areas of their life, such as work or school.

If you have narcissistic personality disorder, you may come across as conceited, boastful or pretentious. You often monopolize conversations. You may belittle or look down on people you perceive as inferior. You may feel a sense of entitlement — and when you don't receive special treatment, you may become impatient or angry. You may insist on having "the best" of everything — for instance, the best car, athletic club or medical care.

At the same time, you have trouble handling anything that may be perceived as criticism. You may have secret feelings of insecurity, shame, vulnerability and humiliation. To feel better, you may react with rage or contempt and try to belittle the other person to make yourself appear superior. Or you may feel depressed and moody because you fall short of perfection.

Many experts use the criteria in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), published by the American Psychiatric Association, to diagnose mental conditions. This manual is also used by insurance companies to reimburse for treatment.

DSM-5 criteria for narcissistic personality disorder include these features:

Having an exaggerated sense of self-importance
Expecting to be recognized as superior even without achievements that warrant it
Exaggerating your achievements and talents
Being preoccupied with fantasies about success, power, brilliance, beauty or the perfect mate
Believing that you are superior and can only be understood by or associate with equally special people
Requiring constant admiration
Having a sense of entitlement
Expecting special favors and unquestioning compliance with your expectations
Taking advantage of others to get what you want
Having an inability or unwillingness to recognize the needs and feelings of others
Being envious of others and believing others envy you
Behaving in an arrogant or haughty manner

Although some features of narcissistic personality disorder may seem like having confidence, it's not the same. Narcissistic personality disorder crosses the border of healthy confidence into thinking so highly of yourself that you put yourself on a pedestal and value yourself more than you value others.

The Narcsissist Terrorizes

The Donald is textbook Narcissist! I know because I was raised by one.

The Witness

When people ask me why I don't speak to anyone in my family I tell them. I explain how my teachers invited me to sleep over in second and fourth grade. They thought I was exceptional and they knew my mother was a monster. When the abuse became intolerable and threatened my life I began running away. I started at age 15, and settled in Rhode island at age 17. Years later I visited my favorite teacher for lunch in NYC, this teacher told me "I met a lot of parents at Mamaroneck High School but your mother was one of the worst." That was all the validation I ever needed. Thank you I said, for being my WITNESS. You've saved me a lot.

The work is never ending because now there are the siblings who are holding the torch on behalf of the abuser. The abuser who I call Hitler, when discussing her with my husband. "They want me to kiss Hitler's ass," I'll say. No way, never! I shout. The siblings want a perfect family which means ignoring my experience of torture and abuse. No way, Never I say.

Bug on the Windshield

"To forgive is to see that the offender, in fact, does not have the power he or she is attempting to take."
- Wendell Berry

Headless Women

When people ask me why I paint headless women I say I was raised by them.

Death of Salesman

Folktale of my family.

Global Quirks


This is Gutless Leadership!


No, I'm From New York


Waking at 4AM

A rested mind and 2 hours of complete silence while the rest the world is stil asleep are extremely powerful and create miracles.

Do it the Right Way

If you want to surround yourself with a strong team, you’ll have to learn how to let people go. As difficult as it can be, firing someone the right way is a benefit both to your organization and to the person you're letting go.

The only thing people like less than being let go by a boss is being pink-slipped by a hired gun or by an HR director. Not doing your own firing is a failure to “clean up after yourself.” The people being fired will resent it, and so will the ones doing your dirty work. Eventually the whole organization will pick up on your inability to face tough issues.

You don’t have to learn to like firing people. You don’t even have get beyond the great anxiety of doing so. You only need to get to the point where you can do it when it needs to be done – and do it the right way.

End things on good terms. People don’t cease to exist after you’ve fired them, and who knows, someday you might run into them as a supplier, competitor or customer – or even as a potential hire! It’s a mistake to display anger, to threaten, or to blame, no matter how stressful the conversation gets. Try to convey that you’re sorry things didn’t work out, that you’re wishing the person well, and that you’d like to stay in touch. Indeed, many organizations have alumni associations that include former employees who “weren’t given opportunities to stay on.”


I Wrote to a Friend

I wrote to a childhood friend in New Zealand and the email bounced. I googled her name and got an obituary dated a year ago. She died of pneumonia. I am still in shock because my sister knew all about it but deliberately didn't tell me. This is the legacy of the awful members of my New York family.

I started running away from abusive parents at age 15. The anger is still there. These are not compassionate or kind people. These are greedy competitive vindictive narcissists.

Ring Around the Moon

Today is the first day of Autumn. It's humid and hot but the weather will cool down Saturday. I am still working in the office what I call my country house because it's a little cottage. There's a ring around the waning D-shaped moon.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Strange Reward

It may sound strange but sometimes vacuuming and washing and baking feel like my BIG REWARD for getting up at 4AM to work.

I know my energy will shift. I am making good use of the last of the transmit energy. October is the transition month.

Today is the last day of summer. I could go to the ocean to swim but it's a long trip. I vacuumed my house and showed a next door apartment to a friend. Then I went swimming in the pool on my street.

In modern Japan, a Buddhist priest can now be found

In modern Japan, a Buddhist priest can now be found just a few mouse clicks away, on

Raw Sunflower Seeds and Raisins: Vitamin Power!

Delicious energy boost.
Also try whole wheat tortillas with Greek yogurt and shredded carrot and sunflower seeds added and rolled up and sliced.

Yorkshire Tea

Let's Have a Proper Brew! It's so good you don't need milk or honey. Available at Joblot!

Wendell Berry Quote for Woonsocket RI

The people of wealth and power do not know what it means to take a place seriously: to think it worthy of love and study and careful work.
- Wendell Berry

Use the Energy of the Fear, Rage, Joy

it's my daily task to employ my strong emotions. It's fuel for art, music, athletics, appetite, and curiosity.

Morning Thoughts Part 2

I loathe drama, drugs and drunkennes, and all forms of erratic unreliable behavior. I grew up with this baloney from my parents and the hyper-vigilance nearly killed me.

I remember my mother saying "I'm like a drunk driver, you have to tell me when to get off the road!"

I said "You shouldn't drive if you are a drunk, it's not my responsibility to take care of your bad behavior."


It's a huge daily effort for me to be centered and balanced. I no longer tolerate it from people in my inner circle.
Children of alcoholics are a particular breed.

Just say NO to violence and bad behavior even when it's your family.

Thich Nhat Hanh

Meditation is not to avoid society; it is to look deep to have the kind of insight you need to take action. To think that it is just to sit down and enjoy the calm and peace, is wrong.
-Thich Nhat Hanh

It's not the kind of energy I want to have in life

Before, I was so stupid. But, you know, when you have friends who died on the street, you say, okay, let's calm down. It's not the kind of energy I want to have in life. I want to go slower, and longer.
- Olivier Martinez

A Life of Peace

You practice mindfulness, on the one hand, to be calm and peaceful. On the other hand, as you practice mindfulness and live a life of peace, you inspire hope for a future of peace.
- Thich Nhat Hanh


I go to the ocean to calm down, to reconnect with the creator, to just be happy.
- Nnedi Okorafor

Beyond the Clamor

We must go beyond the constant clamor of ego, beyond the tools of logic and reason, to the still, calm place within us: the realm of the soul.
- Deepak Chopra

Nikola Tesla

With ideas it is like with dizzy heights you climb: At first they cause you discomfort and you are anxious to get down, distrustful of your own powers; but soon the remoteness of the turmoil of life and the inspiring influence of the altitude calm your blood; your step gets firm and sure and you begin to look - for dizzier heights.
- Nikola Tesla


Romance is tempestuous. Love is calm.
- Mason Cooley

My Team

I have my team. Like if you see everyone around me - I have my hair and makeup girl, my assistant. They're very calm, they're all about positive energy. They're no drama queens. Everyone wants everyone else to have a positive experience. There are no agendas. I think it creates a healthy environment and there are no boundaries to cross.

Excite you, Calm you, Make you Think

I don't think that architecture is only about shelter, is only about a very simple enclosure. It should be able to excite you, to calm you, to make you think.
- Zaha Hadid

Mr. T

You'll never have any trouble with Mr. T, I'm just a big, calm teddy bear kind of guy. Mr. T ain't ashamed to cry. When I go out and I meet people who are suffering and they come and talk to me, Mr. T cries, Mr. T who could break a man's jaw with his fist.
- Mr. T

Shut Myself in a Room

If I want to calm down, I'll buy some fabric, get a pattern, shut myself in a room and stay there for days, really happy. And at the end of it, you get a bedspread or some curtains or something to wear - it's lovely. - Twiggy

Slow and Calm

My theater is slow and calm, yet my life is fast and hectic, going in all directions.
- Robert Wilson

Carl jung on Security and Calm

The most intense conflicts, if overcome, leave behind a sense of security and calm that is not easily disturbed. It is just these intense conflicts and their conflagration which are needed to produce valuable and lasting results. Carl Jung

Stop My Mind

I love to have a bath with beautiful, relaxing music on and have no rush to do anything. It's a wonderful indulgence, and it helps me to calm down and stop my mind running overtime.
- Kylie Minogue

Raf Simmons

Every weekend, I'm on the highway to Antwerp. I need to be there, to have the calm. It's a whole different life: I jump on my bike, and it's so small, I can be anywhere in a minute. I like to be at home when there's free time because when you're at a big company, you're constantly surrounded by 30 people.
- Raf Simons

Raf Simons is a Belgian fashion designer. Beginning in furniture design, he launched his own menswear label in 1995. In April 2012 he was announced as the creative director at Christian Dior. On October 22, 2015 he resigned from Christian Dior. Wikipedia
Born: January 12, 1968 (age 48), Neerpelt, Belgium
Nationality: Belgian

An Actor

As an actor, what's interesting is what's hidden away beneath the surface. You want to be like a duck on a pond - very calm on the surface but paddling away like crazy underneath.
- Alexander Skarsgard

This Morning's Thoughts

This morning I am thinking about the importance of being calm. Balance is a daily effort for me. I was born with reverse gravity. At least that's the best way to explain it. I had recurring dreams of floating up out of the family car as we drove along the road. No matter how hard I tried to be seated I flew up through the roof in dream logic. Now that I am an adult I see this symbolic dream as an important metaphor for my experience in my original family and on the planet in general. Luckily I ran away and escaped. I found a new family and learned what love and compassion was. I learned the golden rule. I learned that people are good, generally and they could be trusted. I learned to trust my intuition.

We each have our own divining rod. Our spine! I also call it the ziti. We are vessels for the spirit and life.

These are my thoughts at 6:50 Am in Woonsocket Rhode Island. Over and out.