Apr 302008

There are thirteen members of my high school graduating class on Facebook. I remember exactly one of them. One or two others give off a vague whiff of familiarity. But the majority? No idea who they are. Their names do not ring the smallest bell.

We can guess that at least some of the women have gotten married, and have changed their names, but what of the men? Shouldn’t I recognize some of these people? A little? Supposedly I went to school with them for four years or more. I guess I did a better job than I thought of blocking out those unpleasant years. (There are, I should say, quite a few people from my high school that I do remember; these folks just haven’t joined Facebook yet. Which is fine.)

Google didn’t help much, although it did lead me to this Web site belonging to a probable former classmate. On this site extolling the virtues of “naturopathic medicine,” I was introduced to my new favorite word: “colorpuncture.” Colorpuncture! Naturally, in the manner of all aimless Web surfing, I had to stop exploring my former schoolmates and start learning about this.

What is colorpuncture? Well, it just happens to be a “revolutionary evolution in holistic healing and one of Europe’s most popular new alternative healing disciplines.”

In a Colorpuncture treatment, frequencies of colored light are focused on the skin using a hand-held acu-light tool with specially designed, hand-made interchangeable glass rods which emit different colors of light through a focused tip. Each color consists of different wavelength frequencies of light and therefore communicates different energetic information. Treatments include a specific set of points in a sequence using a prescribed pattern of colors. As the light is absorbed by the skin and transmitted along energetic pathways or meridians deep into the body, it stimulates intra-cellular communication which supports healing.

Colorpuncture is also a powerfully holistic healing system which offers a unique new way to get to the very roots of many health problems. It is designed to address the non-physical origins of illness as well as its physical symptoms. Colorpuncture therapy uses precisely targeted light treatments to gently unlock and release emotional trauma and blocked soul information which often underlie our illnesses. Patients report not only changes in their bodies, but improved emotional outlooks and a clearer sense of life direction after treatments.

You would think that if colored light can “stimulate intra-cellular communication” and “support healing,” that you could prove as much in a lab — you know, double-blind testing, the whole silly scientific rigor thing — but I can’t find anything online that says this has happened. Still, you have to give them all sorts of points just for the name. Colorpuncture! That’s genius.

Update: I see now that colorpuncture not only promotes healing, not only prevents you from getting sick in the first place, but is also an alternative to plastic surgery. Is there anything colored lights can’t do?

Apr 292008

Alex is a subscriber! We’ve been through the “birdfeeder” phase and the “pumpkin” phase. Now that he’s a little older and more mature, he can handle multiple obsessions simultaneously. He presently has three:

1) Telling time. Man, is he proud of himself that he’s learned this valuable skill. Now we have to figure out how to get him to stop.

2 and 3) “Tomorrow” and “Exactly.” He uses these like commas — they are put into a sentence where you or I might insert a slight pause, for instance if we wanted to take a breath. Sample usage: “We’ll go see the trucks tomorrow, tomorrow, zackly, zackly!”

I don’t count trucks as an obsession. He can go sixty full seconds without talking about trucks, while it’s a rare minute indeed that doesn’t include an update on the time and/or the use of one or both hotwords. But don’t get me wrong: He likes trucks. A quarter-mile from my house is the town green, where the town has been repairing a long length of sidewalk over the past few weeks. Alex and I go to watch. I’ll sit on a park bench while Alex cheers them on like a sports fan at the World Series and Super Bowl combined. “Woo hoo!” he jumps. “All right! All right, dump truck! Hooray, digger! Zackly! Zackly!” It’s hard to imagine the construction workers haven’t noticed this enthusiastic little kid leaping about and woohooing, but they have not so much as glanced in our direction. Which is fine, because I already feel like I should slip them five bucks or so, the same way you’d throw a couple of dollars in a street performer’s guitar case.

Lea has her own obsessions, and while they don’t consume her in quite the same way, they can still be a little wearying. This past weekend was my father’s 65th birthday, and in the days before we went out there, Lea spent quite a bit of time wondering about the status of birthday balloons: Would there be some? What colors would they be? Might there be a purple one? Assuming for a moment the existence of a purple balloon, might there be a chance — however small — that Papa will share the purple balloon?

Also: Cake?

We assured her that there would be both balloons and cake. At the event itself, however, Lea’s desire for cake ran headlong into Lea’s equally strong desire never to eat anything else. Despite repeated warnings that she had not eaten enough dinner to justify giving her dessert, Lea sat at the dinner table and moved food around her plate, apparently hoping that if she dismantled it into its component molecules, the food would dissolve into the atmosphere and it would look like she had, for once, eaten a decent supper.

But the food remained stubbornly solid on her plate, and when the rest of the family started cleaning off the table, she panicked. Dinner would soon be over! If I do not eat, there will be no cake! She shoved several pieces of meat into her mouth, and then took a big sip of juice. And then threw up all over herself.

My daughter has an eating disorder, the same way Robert Hays had a “drinking problem” in the movie Airplane.

So no cake for Lea. She and I sat in my parents’ den, and she moped as only a five-year-old girl can mope. She wrote on a whiteboard: I AM SAD, and drew a frowny face with blood-red tears, and drew an ice-cream cone so that I would more easily grasp the point of what she was sad about. And when I took a marker and wrote “I Love Lea” with a little red heart, she immediately took a tissue and slowly and methodically erased this. That’ll teach me. Love, schmove — where’s the CAKE?

Apr 282008

This is spiffy: A school in Maple Park, Illinois, has chosen Winston Breen for its “one book” program. The point is to get as many kids as possible to read the same book over the course of a year. The librarian there says she’s planning “scavenger hunts, monthly puzzle contests, a family game night, and a few other things to keep the momentum going.” They’re also buying a copy of the book for every classroom.

I’ve never been there, but boy, I sure like Maple Park, Illinois.