2001: Medical Stories from the Chair and Bed

(A study of bed and window by Kristin Vogt)

So, as I creep towards my sixties. I begin to reap the medical monkeys that creep along with age. About two years ago, I lost a blast of vision in one eye from some syndrome I could never pronounce. It involves the flow of blood to the optic nerve and causes a permanent vision loss that they say cannot get worse. Nine months later I got it in the other eye as well, and it took about 2/3 of my sight. I've adjusted pretty well to it but lost my ability to drive the car at all and read for long periods of time. While getting an exploratory MRI scan to check said eyes a coupla years ago , a new enemy was sighted - a benign brain tumor - walnut size. The doctor said we should have a look-see twice a year to monitor any progress. After three looks , it began to grow again. The surgeon suggested going on in and pulling it out. I agreed. Surgery was quietly set for November 12th, 2001. I was not particularly frightened because a) it was not malignant b) I have a great surgeon.

These are rather long procedures however - mine was from 7:30 AM to 4 PM. Eight and a half rather bloody hours I am told in retrospect. Today is two weeks after said cut. I was released from the hospital Wednesday after said cutting Monday. It is a slow, painful, uncomfortable recovery so far. However, there is no cancer. I blocked out the rest of 2001 so I am resting in comparative work peace. Two days before the operation, I was fired from my monthly column at EQ magazine. Did they know something I didn't, perhaps? Lovely timing, nonetheless. 2001 has been quite a year for loss - me Mum, me dog Daisy, 9-11-01, and my six-year column at EQ Magazine. Also the release of my box set RARE & WELL DONE on 9/18, which was quickly buried in the rubble of the war.

2002 holds a few possibilities in there. A full recovery would be a great start in January. A local gig in February to celebrate my 58th year surviving this rock stuff. In March we are trying to re-release SUPER SESSION with two bonus tracks and some excellent mastering. A live album with Bloomfield, lost for thirty-several years, was discovered while researching the RARE album. It has been repaired , edited, and mixed an mastered. It's from the Fillmore East in 1968 with a guest appearance by Johnny Winter. We are trying to release both of them at the same time in April or May. Keep your eye here for more news on them. Have happy holidays and we'll talk again in the New Year.