Musashi Mix Inq

Palliativity 225: one shot

Posted on February 27, 2014


Either take art history or make art history.


Filed under: Art, film, Music, Pain No Comments

Palliativity 223: Re-Birthday

Posted on February 12, 2014

The long bleak Chicago winter drags on, but things are looking brighter than ever.


How am I doing with my chronic pain you ask?


Pretty awesomely 🙂

My body was once an unsustainable mess of twisted nerves, atrophied muscles and overcompensations.

The whole system was barely held together with medication, unhealthy habits and long painful nights.

This day marks my first Re-Birthday— RFA, the first win in the battle to end 15 years of chronic pain.

There have been many ups and downs since the original procedure and only now can I really appreciate the struggle of it all. First we burnt out the nerves that were sending false pain signals. Then we dropped all the meds. At this point I began experiencing an all new kind of pain- the legitimate kind. My body had been doing the best that it could to allow for minimal basic life stuff for over a decade. Suddenly I was tasking it to take on the world. With difficulty, I accepted that the fight wasn't over just yet. It felt like climbing to the top of a mountain only to realize that there was quite a bit more to go. I bared down and started rebuilding.


This past year, I set about the long and exhausting process of reprogramming the entire structure of my upper body. The frayed nerves in my spine had forced all of the muscles from the back of my skull, down through my neck and upper back to do everything wrong. Imagine the agony involved if the muscles on the side of your neck just decided one day to be solely responsible for supporting the entire weight of your arms ALL DAY LONG. I used to call that "my life".

Retraining my body felt like recovering from a stroke. I was attempting to build muscle mass which essentially had no connection to my brain. But once I got things rolling, the pain decreased as my strength and endurance grew exponentially. Months of constant rehab and exercise have certainly paid off. The photos above and below illustrate what a year of hard work and dedication can bring.


It may be a rough winter, but it's a sunshine day in my mind.

Winter bright


Filed under: Pain, RFA No Comments

Palliativity 223: it ain’t what you’ve got, it’s what you make

Posted on February 6, 2014

This past Sunday, our friend and her 5 year old came over for dinner. At the end of the evening we exchanged hugs and they headed home. While my partner and I cleaned up, we discovered that something quite awesome got left behind. Rather than texting our friend and calling it a night, I saw an opportunity for artistic shenanigans. WARNING: this is what happens when you leave things at my house:

pony1Started out pretty tame with the Thor cat


pony2Then it was time to get the engine running


pony3No stopping us now


pony5Lucy in the sky!


pony4I've made a terrible mistake


pony6Deported to Canada


— FIN —

(Title of post care of Shovels & Rope)


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Palliativity 222: a special kind of cover

Posted on January 23, 2014


This is pretty spot-on representation of  what making my art feels like:

Each art piece I create is a reference of a reference, adding a new voice to the harmony… and I am also a muppet.

Space Oddity, ©MMXIII


Bonus Round:


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Palliativity 221: Snowpalooza 2014

Posted on January 8, 2014

It's -40°F out and definitely time for some frozen shenanigans!




Frozen bubbles!


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Palliativity 220: illusion

Posted on December 12, 2013


Even though I'm continuing to feel better than ever before, some habits are inescapable. For example, gauging my current chronic physical pain from 1-10 is as involuntary as breathing. This actually can be quite difficult since pain signals are extremely relative and yet highly polarized. How would you compare a paper-cut to a rolled ankle or a sinus headache to a kick to the shin? Imagine stifling that primal scream while actively participating in the narrative that is your life. Remaining objective and civilized comes down to observing your actions and your physical/emotional state of unrest at any given moment.

The body evolved to have a natural response to pain. With chronic pain, what you do with that impulse defines you.


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