The Holidays: The Gift of Treatment for My Addicted Child

                  The Holidays:  The Gift of Treatment for My Addicted Child   It gets dark really early the week before Christmas.  It was already quite dark that afternoon. I watched the holiday lights come on in people’s yards and glimpsed the decorated trees through the windows of each home. Memories of Christmas pasts came rushing [...]

2017-12-19T17:36:41+00:00December 19th, 2017|

Five reasons I break my anonymity

    Five reasons to break my anonymity The last four books I’ve written all deal in some way with addiction. I certainly didn’t plan it that way.  I had been mostly writing for some twenty years about women in jazz. When I planned the first one, a history of women musicians’ accomplishments - and [...]

2017-10-04T15:17:11+00:00October 4th, 2017|

Heroin users have little regard for their lives – says police chief

"It boggles the mind why anyone would consume such potentially deadly substances," grumbles the police chief of a sprawling lower and middle class town, responding to several recent heroin overdoses.  It boggled my mind when a woman stepped into traffic as she texted on her phone, causing cars to screech to a halt just in [...]

2017-10-04T15:23:01+00:00August 21st, 2017|

Unbearable images

The author of The English Patient, Michael Ondaatje, says in an interview that his novels are typically inspired by “a little key-hole of an image.” That got me thinking about when I was a girl. Looking for the story inside the “little key-hole” often got me in trouble then. I snooped, I asked inconvenient questions, [...]

2017-06-26T20:46:52+00:00June 23rd, 2017|

Why it’s important to understand how substance use affects women

Experts say that women addicts tend to feel intense shame, even self-abasement whereas male addicts "typically build up grandiose false selves that must be challenged before they can discover and cultivate their true selves..." YET in treatment facilities, very often all addicts are seen as "self-focused and practitioners perceive their task as breaking that obsession [...]

2017-05-31T17:58:08+00:00September 3rd, 2015|

Karin Allyson: A singer I wish I liked better

I've been listening to Karin Allyson on CD's for years, her voice a tart sorbet.  Raspberry will do. With a yearning sweet undercurrent. I was going to compare it to a well-aged cheddar, but somehow there's nothing complimentary about a cheese simile when describing a singer.  And she is quite a singer. She is a [...]

2017-05-31T17:58:08+00:00November 19th, 2014|

Riffing on Whiplash: The trouble with movies that are ideas about art

     So I'm an artist (words) who loves artists who work in other media - visual, aural, multimedia. Love and need music, especially American multi-cultural improvisational music.  OK, let's call it jazz. But anything deeply soulful will do.      To Whiplash, which I saw last night.  The idea excited me:  a young jazz [...]

2017-05-31T17:58:08+00:00November 9th, 2014|

Blood on the teeth II

   When I was a cub writer back in the 70's, I met an Irishman with prematurely silver hair who got himself up at 5 a.m. each morning in his little apartment in the city before going off to a tiresome day gig as a clerk.  This was his holy time, and the time he [...]

2017-05-31T17:58:08+00:00August 18th, 2013|