A Little More Jan Hooks

Every time Jan Hooks re-enters the pop culture blood stream, I get a tremendous spike in my readership. Last Saturday, it happened again. SNL reran an episode that included a tribute to Hooks, the “Love Is a Dream” sketch, now a bona fide tear-jerker since both Hooks and Phil Hartman are gone. Apparently, people are still searching for information on what happened to her last October. (There’s still no new information, by the way. Only Wikipedia citing a single Daily Mail article, which cited the head of her building’s co-op as their big source on Hooks’s cause of death.) I, too, wish we knew more, but I also wish we had more of her and her work. She was so very, very funny. And she disappeared from the public eye far too soon.

But we’ve been all been saying the same thing for several months now, so here’s something I never saw until Salon mentioned it in a recent interview with Nora Dunn:  a clip of Dunn and Hooks as the Sweeney Sisters, opening the Emmys in 1988. The video quality is pretty bad, but the show Dunn and Hooks put on is a little snippet of lunatic brilliance. Possibly the best part happens when the Sweeneys leave the stage and start accosting all the celebrities in the audience. (Think famous actors like being messed with when they’re the ones watching something onstage? Think again.)

Enjoy the clip, everyone! And be sure to check out this exhaustive essay on Hooks’s career from blogger Little Kicks Dance, who pulls together an amazing amount of material on Hooks’s life and personality as well. My hat’s off to you, Little Kicks Dance. A big, giant virtual bottle of tequila for you in honor of collecting, like, ten times the amount of quality material than the Daily Mail’s “let’s interview the head of her co-op” reporting staff did!

My Life on Lupus: My First Acupuncture

Imagine this cotton ball is the top of my head.

Dear God, I’m a slow blogger. I’ve just figured out that I’ve posted exactly zero entries for July 2015. All those witty observations and enlightened ruminations I meant to put into blog form (I swear!) tragically never made it onto the computer, and I feel kinda crappy about that. What kind of writer am I if I’m not constantly bombarding the Interwebs with evidence of my existence?

(Yeah, don’t answer that, anybody. Especially certain arrogant representations of certain iconic authors, in action-figure form, currently sitting on my bookshelf.)

Granted, I have been through about a month of trying new meds, flaking out on them, and recovering from the flake-out. Which brings me to today, and this very post about acupuncture and Me Trying It Out. You see, after the fourth medication that amped up my anxiety to the point where I was constantly thinking about how I was going to die, I decided that perhaps I ought to try something for the pain in my hands and feet that didn’t involve changing my body chemistry. (Actually, most of my new meds of recent weeks have been for my exciting, recently diagnosed esssential tremor, but we’ll set that fact aside for the moment.) And since I’m a bit leery of massage therapy after a blood clot grew in my head right above a spot in my neck that a massage therapist in Iowa had earlier pinched the hell out of, I decided to try acupuncture. Other reasons for giving acupuncture a go: 1) I’ve been stuck with so many needles in 17 years that the needle fear center of my brain has withered away to nothing; 2) a few weeks back, when I got an EMG test to see how the nerves in my feet were doing, the doctors gave me little electric shocks through tiny acupuncture-like needles, and after the initial jolt of pain the zapping kinda felt good; and 3) I desperately want someone else to rub or press or stab away the pain in my body.

So this morning, I went to an appointment that I thought would be a regular old intake session but was, in fact, my first foray into Chinese medicine. Two rounds of needles: one with me face down, the other with me lying on my back. A heated bio mat was involved, as well as an eye pillow, which might have been more relaxing than the needles themselves. One thing that struck me as odd was that there wasn’t a lot of activity involved with the process. When you get a massage, obviously the massage therapist is there in the room with you, constantly oiling you down and manipulating your various muscles. With the needle treatment, the acupuncturist sticks you in a few places and leaves the room–I guess because the needles themselves are supposed to be doing all the work.

And it does feel like something was done to my body, something more than the penetration of my skin with sharp metal threads. The sensation is sort of like someone took certain of my muscles on a long marathon. Very specific areas of my body feel energized and sore at the same time. There have also been little itches and twitches throughout the day, little pricks of pain, like my whole body is in the process of bubbling. I don’t know how else to describe it, and I don’t know what the sensations mean. I don’t know what I’m going to feel like tomorrow. Maybe that’s the real point of the process: bringing the present into focus, so you can be mindful of your true reality.

I hope tomorrow I feel a tiny smidge better.