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Neck Strengthening Exercises for Long Covid

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  Image created with Dall-E 2 by D. Troy Roach, "Bust of a strong man in the style of MC Escher."   ..... Since my second SARS2 infection in April of 2021, my main physical symptom (not counting fatigue, PEM, etc...) has been neck pain. Nothing I did seemed to help improve this symptom; stretching, weekly PT, Chiropractor, different pillows, muscle relaxers, etc were all a bust. Luckily, in June 2022 I found some isometric exercises which have made a big difference over the span of two to three months of doing them almost daily. My neck issues have reduced by 70%. My problem, as diagnosed by a specialist PT, is probably neuromuscular. It affects my occipitals, SCM, TMJ, throat, tinnitus, etc. It seems to be a kind of CCI (Cranial Cervical instability) that was caused by the Spring 2021 flavor of SARS2.  Note: Before these exercises, I took Gabapentin for 5 weeks and then Pregabalin for three weeks. Both seemed to help my neck, Pregabalin more than Gabapentin. Three weeks see

"Caste" by Isabel Wilkerson, my notes

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These are my notes from "Caste" by Isabel Wilkerson. Note: This is not a review of the book or a complete set of the ideas presented. It is simply a list of points, listed in order of presentation in the book, that I found interesting. I have added some personal comments from personal experiences. This picture has nothing to do with the book. It is just a picture of me reflecting. 😏🤔 1. Do not focus on individuals and racism. Focus on the Caste system that causes inequality. I think that this is the single most useful idea in the book. My takeaway is that it is often useless to blame/attack individuals for their racism. It is more productive to point out problems from the Caste system and working to fix the system. 2. Nazi Germany used the US system, laws, and history (Indian genocide, Jim Crow laws of percentages, slavery, etc) to set up a less extreme system for Jews. The fact that the USA had the best legal model for Nazis to set up a system to discriminate against (and

"Moral Licensing" and "Value Signaling" as a path to de-polarization and "Truthiness"

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Builing Bridges, not walls... Claude Monet, National Art Gallery, Washington DC, December 2008, Photo copyright @unitedstatesian Basic truth/facts which are accepted by the majority of the population seem to be rare. The path to reaching the common ground is more indirect than might be expected  The direct route would be for journalists on both sides to form a kind of consensus commission. A multi-partisan group could work together to publish a "wiki" of agreed facts from the previous week's events. They could complement these posts with lists of contested facts on parts they do not agree on and links to their supporting evidence.  In my opinion, the road to true change would also require the creation of one or two new parties, but I will leave that for a future post :-)  However, these dry, unemotional facts would only solve a small part of the problem and I argue that it starts with two key concepts becoming part of colloquial language.... The solution lies in making  M

Bad slogans: How to create a slogan and not shoot yourself in the foot.

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 #BlackLivesMatter #DefundThePolice #GlobalWarming #ClimateChange #MeToo#BeBest? #GenerationTouch  @yipiyipiyeah How to create a good slogan? When making slogans, people need to be very careful because language is important and the message can be easily twisted.  Rule #1: Do NOT make the slogan too specific.  A good example is #GlobalWarming which only spoke to one part of the global environmental problem. As time went on, proponents saw that the slogan was too narrow and it did not get across a complicated issue with many causes and a varied outcome. Global warming was replaced with #ClimateChange which is a much better slogan, but people who do not understand the issue are still stuck on the "warming" part and use snowstorms as faulty reasoning to ignore the science. An entire generation was lost because of a wrongly formulated slogan. Rule #2: Do not make it divisive.  The #BLM slogan is both too specific and divisive. The idea is obviously "Black lives matter Too&quo

Indoctrination Generation

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Beach on the border between Jaffo and Tel-Aviv. Muslim Women co-existing with Jewish women  in Bikini on the beach in summer. Dear citizens of the world, The past couple of weeks here in Israel have been stressful but not as bad as it is shown on the media: First of all, the stabbing attacks have been in and around Jerusalem mostly. Secondly, most of the targets are police, military and Orthodox Jews. Living in Tel-Aviv means being in a bubble and immune to the crazy side; however is does not make you immune from the stress. Life goes on but you second guess each choice to go out, you are more aware of your surroundings, any young Israeli Arabs are watched as if they could make you the next headline.  Plans for a Friday dinner in Jerusalem have been put off indefinitely and the last hike in the mountains near the city was cancelled as well. All in all, these flare-ups of confrontation between Bibi and the Palestinians is not what worry me. The threat comes from the l

Petra - Weekend Escape - Part II

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Dear Citizens of the World! Today, I have decided to take a break from being the target in other people's target practice to post the second set of pics from our weekend in Petra. Seems fitting since Petra holds so much beauty.... This was my favourite spot in Petra. It is a very colourful tomb below and to the left of the Tomb of the Kings. A detail of the area below the entrance of this tomb. Ceiling detail... As promissed I have some tips for your next visit to Petra: First , choosing the correct time of year is crucial. Winter evening get quite cold at 1000m elevation in a desert. Summer days would be worse. Second : when making the long treck up behind the tomb of the kings (some of the stairs in the pic above) to see the Treasury from the rim of the canyon, make sure you plan to be at top when you have the right lighting. I went quite early and it was still mostly in the shade. Third : Plan to stay at least 1.5 to 2 days. There is plenty to visit and it is best to

Petra - Weekend Escape - Part I

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Dear Citizens of the World, Living in Israel means being disconnected with most of its neighbors, but Jordan and Israel have quite good relations. Lucky for us, it is possible to cross the border and visit Petra in one long weekend - one day there, 1.5 days to visit and then back to Tel Aviv. Unfortuntely, our visit to Petra and Wadi Rum were at the end of January when it was very cold and cloudy... but I guess that it is better than 40 degrees (100F) in the summer. A few shots from our first day at Petra... Thanks to these two, we were able to get a nice hot tea with mint - great when you are in a desert and it is cloudy and cold! A wider section of the canyon with fantastic light. Fantastic texture that looks like dripping paint. There is plenty of information on visiting Petra, however, in my next post, I will give some tips that I did not find in any of the on-line guides. - The United Statesian A parting shot... Cloudy day in the city at the gates to Petra.