April 23, 2013
As she scanned my passport, the teenage Israeli soldier stared through the bulletproof glass that separated us. Looking down at my photo and then up again, she finally waved me through.
On the other side of “The Wall,” taxis waited. I picked one out of a clump and haggled over the fare. (“It’s fucking hard here man” my driver said, as he demanded an exorbitant price. I bargained it down, all the while assuring him that I could see it was “fucking hard” here). He drove me to my hotel, the Paradise. Read the rest of this entry »
February 18, 2013
I recently returned from attending my second NAMM (National Association of Music Merchants) show. This year, as in the past, I was working with MusiCares, the charitable health and human services arm of the Recording Academy (GRAMMYs).
MusiCares offers support for musicians in need. Among other benefits, it helps them pay their rent, subsidizes the cost of medical services, and provides free support groups for musicians who are dealing with staying clean and sober. Read the rest of this entry »
January 14, 2013
People are talking about mindfulness as if it’s the latest fashion trend: mindful eating, mindful communication, mindful movement, even mindful business management. The explosion of books, CD’s and videos on the subject now includes weekend seminars and lengthy meditation retreats. Leaders of this new field articulate the merging of mindfulness, technology, and ancient wisdom traditions to rapt audiences. Academies are dedicated to its study. An industry has been born.
But what exactly is mindfulness? Read the rest of this entry »
November 26, 2012
With seemingly clear boundaries between our bodies and the world through which we move, it’s easy to feel separated from everything outside our skin. But as physical, chemical, emotional, and energetic beings, this perception belies our true nature. Read the rest of this entry »
October 22, 2012
You’ve been at the computer for six hours and feel that familiar tug. From your upper back, spreading slowly to your neck and grabbing the base of your skull, stiffness turns to pain and the dull ache turns sharp. Your movement becomes restricted. Unable to turn your head, you tell yourself that it is time to see your chiropractor. You remember that it has been a year since you saw him last. Read the rest of this entry »
July 17, 2012
The Supreme Court’s decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has profound implications for the future of American health care. Of course it will lead to changes in how care is delivered. But it will also lead to a transformation in our perception of the meaning of health and healing. Read the rest of this entry »
April 29, 2012
I worked at the Haight-Ashbury Free Medical Clinic from 1986 until 2001. With the exception of the medical director and a few nurse practitioners and physician assistants, the providers–psychologists, chiropractors, acupuncturists, podiatrists, physical and massage therapists, and a variety of medical specialists—were all volunteers. Read the rest of this entry »
April 3, 2012
I just finished reading The End of Illness, a provocative new book by David Agus, MD. Agus is a medical oncologist and a leading cancer researcher. The focus of his research has been the varied mechanisms of cancer development.
One of the simple, profound conclusions he reaches, is that we must stop thinking about cancer as a “thing” to be cut out or poisoned, but as a pathological systemic process. Cancer, he believes, should be seen as a verb. We don’t just “have cancer.” Instead, we “cancer”. Read the rest of this entry »
January 30, 2012
Once a year, in the Anaheim Convention Center, the National Association of Music Manufacturers (NAMM) provides space for the creators of musical instruments, amplifiers, recording equipment and every imaginable music accessory to display and demonstrate their newest wares. As a long-time bass player and a bit of a gear head, I was excited to finally be attending this legendary trade show. Read the rest of this entry »
September 30, 2011
As most of us know, we Americans are a mess—overworked, overweight, and stressed out. In addition to the increased demands of our technologically fueled lives and their damaging effects on our wellbeing, we have a health care system in free fall. In one generation we have seen a shift from low cost, comprehensive coverage to $3000 deductibles, low quality HMOs and escalating numbers of people without any insurance at all. Altogether, these developments have damaged health care outcomes and changed the trust relationships between patients, doctors, employers, and health insurance carriers. Read the rest of this entry »