Throwback Thursday: The ER and the Stroke

When I quit the day job, nine years ago now, I inquired to volunteer at a local hospital, and was processed through a formal application and selection drill: application with references and background check; tuberculosis test and booster shots; orientation that included a grand tour of the byzantine hospital bowels; attend specialty departmental training; get…

Plato was a Neuroscientist, too; or, Plato’s Purple Haze

A new Oliver Sacks book is out, The Mind’s Eye. We are kicked in the eye with metaphor, philosophy, and dichotomy, and we have not even opened the book yet: metaphor because Sacks is talking about the brain, for the mind, as Jonah Lehrer put it, “is really just a piece of meat” (Buckminster Fuller…

Precursor to Garrison Keillor

Imagine my surprise when Susan hands me this morning’s Oregonian, nonchalantly telling me Garrison Keillor has plagiarized my stroke article. As it turns out, it’s just another example of great writers thinking alike, or older folks sharing experiences – I guess; as I said, my ER doctor told me “we see them all the time.” My…

Health Care: Bringing It All Back Home

My health care piece, “An object lesson in health and happiness,” appeared in the Saturday, August 29, 2009 print edition of The Oregonian (p. B5). (Click to see on-line version.) Seen here: Oregonian coffee cup on Saturday’s paper, and photo of Susan on the Big Sur River, circa 1969.