Monday, January 12, 2009


When I got sick this December, I found myself listening to music in my hospital bed, varying between the Jackson Five and Iggy Pop. Egyptians prescribed music for physical affliction and damned if I wasn't going to try everything and anything to get off the various drips and tubes and shots. There's a saying that if you have five tubes in you in ICU, you're going to die. Let's say I was close. But once out of the ICU unit or Pizza Hut as my morphine-addled mind thought (the big question: did I order thin and crispy or pan crust?), I found the music to be soothing and found myself drawn to Motown, that happy joyous sound created in Detroit fifty years ago. I especially loved the Jackson Five and in a weird fit of synchronicity found myself watching the epic made for television movie all through Christmas. Despite the depressing nature of most of the scenes and my painkillers that made me a little weepier than usual, I found myself compelled, particularly by the scene where Michael befriends a rat in his room as a child, only to have it killed by his wicked father Joseph.

My rather humorless doctor asked how I was feeling during this ordeal. I told him more cogent than the day before and he laughed and said that he'd never heard a patient use that word. I took off my earphones and explained that I was relying on Iggy Pop to make me well. He looked at me and said, You're white blood cell count is still through the roof. But the next day it was fine. I don't know why it changed, he said. Could be anything. Looks like you're going to live. I credit the song "I Want To Be Your Dog." Also the Jackson Five's ABC. What can I say? Those ancient Egyptians were onto something. And while I didn't have a little rat friend like Michael, I hallucinated plenty of bizarre creatures thanks to my morphine drip. While I knew better than to talk to them, it's always nice to have company.

Michelle's Spell of the Day
"Don't judge yourself by others' standards ... have your own. And don't get caught up into the trap of changing yourself to fit the world. The world has to change to fit you. And if you stick to your principles, values and morals long enough, it will." Berry Gordy Jr

Cocktail Hour
Stop In The Name Of Love

One part vodka
One part Godiva dark chocolate
One part Godiva cappuccino chocolate
Served chilled and garnished with cinnamon.

Benedictions and Maledictions
Happy Monday! Happy 50th birthday, Motown!


Scott said...


I always turn to music to help heal me when I'm feeling bad, physically and especially emotinally. Listening to my favorite artists helps me to forget my troubles for a while, and makes me feel better. Music is good for the soul, even one as black and cold as mine, LOL!

Scott said...

-p.s.- Great pic. :)

the walking man said...

St. Johns, tell me you were in St. Johns where all the doctors are dry and humorless.

I seem to remember a Motown before The Jackson Five, before L.A. when Barry Gordie lived in the Boston Edison district (just off Hamilton) and the term "Soul Music" was slightly derogatory to them not willing to look beyond their own upbringing.

The Temptations and The Supremes were the court, Marvin Gaye and Stevie Wonder kept trading the crown back and forth as kings while Aretha stayed the Queen.

If that music didn't pump up the morphine then nothing could.

Glad you lived kiddo.

JR's Thumbprints said...

I'm not sure how listening to the Jackson 5 would help in your recovery; however, Iggy Pop, should always be taken in very large doses.

Charles Gramlich said...

Well what self-respecting microbe would mess with Iggy? He's probably killed more bacteria than penicillan.

jodi said...

Hi Hon, forget about that rat and give me one o those chocolate cocktails!!! xo

Bee said...

I've always suspected Motown had healing powers and now you've proven it!

The Professor said...

I would offer up XTC and Stevie Wonder (Innervisions). I think the Jackson Five is OTC and Iggy is only by Rx, so use him only as prescribed, b.i.d per auris.

Not to mention a healthy dose of this woman...

"and the song that remembers
more than I. Oh, la la la,
this music swims back to me.
The night I came I danced a circle
and was not afraid."

chris said...

Well, music has always had a special meaning to me. It can run the emotions in any directions. Good times are good times and, I never have figured out how modern blues is called blues, it always makes me stomp my feet with the beat.

I think it was a Motown song,not really sure. So glad you made it yes, I'M so glad you made it. Ah, what the heck I don't know squat about Motown except that I always seemed to have a good time around it.

Laura Benedict said...

I did hear that it's Motown's Birthday--YAY!

ABC is one of the sweetest songs I've ever heard--Somehow it seems like it would've been terribly appropriate with your Pizza Hut Acid Dreams.

Oh, and that cocktail? I fear I couldn't stop for love or money!!!! xoxo

the walking man said...

Is that Grouchie's consort in the brown bikini behind you?