Well, hmmm.  It’s been almost three weeks and I’m still dealing with this back issue. I’d call it more of an ache than a pain that comes and goes, reminding me of its presence whenever I’m walking or rising from a sitting position.  The two doctors I’ve been to suspect it’s a muscular problem but it feels more like a bone issue to me, localized on the back of my right hip.  Also, I can’t imagine what I could have done to trigger it since I was actually taking some time off from my weight training when the issue first cropped up.  So what could have caused it?  The only instant that comes to mind – and, to be honest, I don’t recall if it happened BEFORE or AFTER my back started hurting – was the searing pain I experienced in the exact spot the moment I attempted to drag Jelly’s dog bed into the kitchen – using only my right foot.  Could that have been it?

Anyway, I went to see a massage therapist last week.  I suspect that her former gig was as a lead interrogator at Abu Ghraib.  Curiously, she didn’t address the problem area directly.  Instead, she poked and prodded and kneaded and, at one point, even applied the Vulcan nerve pinch to the bordering regions.  “You’re quite sensitive,”she noted as I squirmed under her attempt to reach inside me and pull out my spleen. “Well, yes,”I said.  “I’m an artist after all.”

So, that was days ago and I still don’t feel any better.  In fact, I feel a little worse. Not my lower back, mind you.  That’s no more or less problematic than it was.  I refer to my bruised hips.  I’m scheduled to go back again on Thursday morning when, no doubt, I’ll probably give up all my secret contacts and the location of the safe house.

I figure I’ll give it a couple of more days and then go to the hospital for a third opinion.  And x-ray.

Hey, Das.  You asked for Akemi’s chickpea salad recipe.  Well, here it is:

Check out all Akemi’s other recipes here: Peasnatch Akemi

And keeping you updated on the exploits of the friends of this blog:

MIPCOM: Don Carmody Television Hires ‘Stargate’s Carl Binder for ‘Echoes’ Pilot (Exclusive) (Carl Binder, Mark Savela, and Ken Kabatoff start development on a new SF project)

http://www.sfwa.org/2013/10/event-michael-burstein-imagines-technical-communication-2073/ (Michael A. Burstein imagines technical communications in 2073)

Jennifer Finnigan To Star In FX Pilot ‘Tyrant’ (Jennifer Finnigan lands the female lead in FX’s Tyrant)

Diana Theatrical Trailer – Naomi Watts, Naveen Andrews – HD (2013) (Cas Anvar’s new movie, Diana, opens November 1st)

34 thoughts on “October 7, 2013: Just ignore it and it’ll go away! Unless it’s a back ache! Friends of this blog!

  1. Hey Joe,

    You should really go see Dr. Anne Stacey @ http://www.annestaceydc.com. She is fantastic. My shoulder was giving me so much issues for over a year and I went to 2 different doctors, had a ultrasound done on it and no one could figure it out. After seeing her once, she determined it was partially dislocated and fixed it right there. It had been so long that I had lost muscle in my arm and had to strengthen it back up, but it’s good as new now.

    She is a miracle worker. I couldn’t speak more highly of her.


  2. Heya Joe,
    If possible try to get an MRI of your lower spine – lumbar.
    Some of your symptoms could be – stenosis, some form of spondylitis, and believe it or not perhaps osteo arthritis.
    Yes…I discovered this for me after having your symptoms and finally doing the MRI.

    Motrin helps a great deal.

    Some forms of the physical therapy seem to “inflict” more agony with the associated pain…LOL. So I stopped that.

    Chiropractic has been my life saver/life line.
    With manual traction of lower spine and emphasis on the illiyum and ishium (spelling) on the right side.

    You may also want to consider something like the Tetter Inversion table. Where gravity works “in reverse” to decompress your spinal column.

    Hope this helps…and if not…there is always chocolate, macarons and some good booze!

    Feel better dude!

  3. i haven’t seen ‘gravity’ yet (it’s just my kind of movie!), but it reminds me of the scenes in ‘camelot / flesh and blood’, with sam floating in space…

    i miss stargate!! :p

  4. Sweet news – thanks for the links – regard Carl, Michael, Jennifer, and Cas!

  5. 1. Thanks, Akemi! I will be making that in the next day or two!! Sounds delish!

    2. Joey, you told me it was wild monkey se…uhhhmmm….ya know. 😉 Now suddenly it’s dragging a doggy bed around with your foot? 😕



    OH!!! I get it!

    That was code for doggy style, right??! 😀


  6. Anyway, I went to see a massage therapist last week. I suspect that her former gig was as a lead interrogator at Abu Ghraib.

    My cousin-in-law, the massage (physical) therapist, once demonstrated her muscle relaxation technique by pressing her thumb in the middle of my back somewhere below my shoulder blade and adjacent to the nerve that controlled my face (or at least the right side of my face).

    Her: “I found the knot!”
    Me: “Gerk!” (my face spasms).
    Her: “I think I can press it out some more..” (presses three times hard).
    Me: “Gerk! Gerk! Gerk!!!” (I now look like I’m doing an Igor impression).
    Her: “So, how does that feel?”

    I remember thinking that “relief” is a relative term. It certainly felt better when she stopped, but was that only because of the pain that came before? I tend to think so.

    On more physical torture news, my diagnosis came back on my knee…I have a cist under the knee cap and the cartilage is torn up. The first step is Physical Therapy for six weeks (I’m in my second week now) and then the doctor will re-evaluate my progress (cortisone shots or surgery may follow).

    The second session, where the therapist directly manipulated my kneecap by puling it with both hands to one side or the other, was the worst so far. I could really feel that cist digging in. I have another appointment tomorrow; I can’t wait to see what new manipulation awaits me…

    And, good luck on Thursday. I have my second session of the week then too. Maybe on Thursdays blog entry and comment section we can compare our bruises and muscle (and/or ligament) pain.

  7. @ Akemi – thanks for the recipe! This is served hot?

    Joe my really old mom got up out of a chair last year and stress fractured a vertabre in her lower back, same location as your pain. But she knew she had a big problem pretty quick. Your problem could be anything.

  8. Joe, sorry to hear about your back problems. I recently had some back pain and my doctor told me that it is because I sit all day at a desk. I need to get up more and excercise/walk/etc.

    I too really felt that it was a skelital problem. But, my doctor prescribed muscle relaxants (valium) and it did a world of good. Until I could get to the doctor, 2 glasses of wine per night did the trick (I’m not normally a drinker).

    Sitting is this generation’s smoking.

    Anyway, I thought of two additional sci-fi, near future properties you might want to consider for adapting to a TV show:

    Push (2009) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0465580/


    Jumper (2008) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0489099/

    What do you think?

  9. Joe, hate to break it to you, but getting older is hell. I’ve had aches and pains (yes, lots of back) as I’ve gotten up there in years…

  10. Sorry about the continuing back and knee problems Joe and Jeff W. Hope they can resolve the cyst problem without surgery.

  11. http://www.shiatsupractor.com/en-nv.html

    My husband has a genetic disorder which has caused severe scoliosis & he has been in constant pain for many years..this place is our life-saver when we visit Vancouver after a long flight.

    If this one is not to your taste I’m sure there are others you can find in the Vancouver area…I’d recommend it to anyone.

    It may seem mad, but it’s worth flying all the way over from the UK just to go there for us.

    Spent a great weekend at London Film & Comic Con and caught up with Michael and Lexa Shanks who were wonderful with their time as always. It was nice to revisit Stargate days at their panel with Suanne Braun on Sunday too…so encouraging to see a little boy aged 7 standing all excited in the queue for his photo op with “Daniel Jackson”..he must have been about 1 yr old when the series finished – so lovely to see how generational the programme is..

  12. Lower back and hip pain is no fun. Get the MRI and then figure out how to handle it once you know what’s wrong.

    I hope you feel better soon!

  13. Damn Joe, sorry you’re still in pain. It’s probably just old age creeping up on you. =) Feel better soon!

    Congrats to Jennifer Finnigan! FX is rapidly becoming one of my favorite networks. They have no fear, and provide great adult programming.

  14. @JeffW – I’m suspicious of a therapy that could potentially stretch out the tissues holding your kneecap in place.

  15. @Carol, sounds like a fun trip, wow London Comic Con, I’ll keep that on my bucket list of cons.

    Sorry about that still aching back. Once you irritate a spot it’s so hard to heal since we are constantly moving. A heating pad does wonders when you are sitting writing for long time to keep that sore spot from getting stiff.

    I’ve reduced a lot of my back twinges by following Esther Gokele’s tips; well, I should admit I’ve never paid for her DVDs because I was able to find a lot of her instruction vids for free on PBS and Youtube, but she has great advice for how to stand, walk and sit better to ease back pain. Turns out my particular method of slumping forward onto the edge of my office chair with my legs twisted like pretzels is actually bad for my back:


  16. I found out I have a deformed L-5, it droops. Plus spondylosis, and enough abdominal surgeries that my front is weak and literally a drag on my back.
    Try swimming, it relieves pressure.
    If you have an MRI, that’s an adventure.

  17. If the pain is in the region, not flames shooting down the leg, muscle most likely. But at this point, do the xray to make sure. Of course, an MRI would give better look at joints. Hope you feel better.

  18. Hey Joe… well, I feel your pain… I feel mine as well, at just about that very spot. I am currently going to a chiropractor who put the bone back the first day. However, days of sitting and struggling to stand up straight, put together with helping with the grandkids, puts me in absolute agony at night. It is just about impossible to find a comfortable position. A few Tylenols later, I might be able to fall asleep after a couple of hours.

    The odd thing is that if I do fall asleep, I wake up in the morning without too much pain initially, and then it all starts over again. It is extremely painful to turn in bed to find a comfortable, sleepable position. I will be watching your journey to wellness and hope you find something that I haven’t thought of. I hope you find comfort – this is NOT fun.

  19. @DP:

    @JeffW – I’m suspicious of a therapy that could potentially stretch out the tissues holding your kneecap in place.

    I thought about that too. The PT technician assured me that the stretching exercises would increase blood flow and help my muscles strengthen and heal. But then I thought “It’s not my muscles that are the problem, but the cyst under my kneecap that is digging into my nerves.”

    By the way, I wrote “cist” earlier but I meant “cyst”. A cist (as in cistern) is a depository of stale water or dry-bones, which may still be applicable to me but would hopefully not occur until much much later 😉

    During the session today, above and beyond the various stretching exercises, they hooked me up to a muscle stimulation machine and put my leg muscles into contraction. I’m not sure it did much. Actually I’m pretty sure it only made my knee-cap hurt more (right where the cyst is, strangely enough).

    I’m having trouble seeing how this line of therapy is going to help, but I’m under doctor’s orders to continue with it for 6 weeks and then report back to him. Two weeks are done on Thursday with four more to go after that…yippee 🙁

  20. @Joe:

    I concur with Sparrow_hawk; get an MRI if you can.

    Before my knee MRI, I had various knee sprain and/or bruising diagnoses, all of which were treated with pain killers and anti-inflammatories, but that wasn’t really addressing the root cause. Heck you could say my recent physical therapy is not addressing the root cause either, but at least I now know what it is and that should help me manage my way through the healthcare process.

    I had an x-ray before that, but an x-ray couldn’t show what was happening under the kneecap or what the soft tissue looked like; hence all the bad diagnoses.

    And good luck on Thursday and I pray your back feels better (and that you’re not bruised too much in physical “therapy”).

  21. Sorry that your back is still hurting but you had me 😆 at your therapy description! I’ve never had my back adjusted or any kind of real physical therapy. I feel lucky after reading yours and JeffW’s description. Hope everyone gets better soon!

    So great about Mr. Binder, yes!? I hope it works out for him and I’ll tune into the show (Echoes). Anyone know what it’s about?

    Das: Thanks for the smile and I’m glad you’re better!

    Thank you Akemi! I can’t wait to try making it.

  22. ~~hmm dragging Jelly’s dog bed with one foot,,,was Jelly in it at the time??!?
    Owie, I feel your pain, sorry massage not wkg, could be the person attempting to massage you, did she mention applying cold or heat after the massage if u felt discomfort(from her wrenching).? sounds like her technique needs some work..if she hurts u again(if u go back) maybe your arm or leg would involuntarily smack her in the head. whoopsie. sending you some virtual hugs {{{hugs}}}. no pain involved.

  23. “I figure I’ll give it a couple of more days and then go to the hospital for a third opinion. And x-ray.”

    Joe an x-ray will show nothing unless there is an obvious break. Insist on an MRI. When I slipped and fell 3 years ago, both my ankle and knee hurt. The hospital x-rayed my ankle and said it was broken. They x-rayed my knee and said it was fine. My primary care physician felt my knee and said it was fine. Three weeks later when I could still not walk on my wably knee, my orthopedic surgeon ordered an MRI. The MRI showed I had torn my ACL, Menencus, a tendon, AND the bone in my knee was broken. I had surgery 3 days later.

    So now, I always tell people, if you really want to know what is wrong, GET AN MRI.

  24. Akemi — Your chickpea salad looks yummy. Love your videos also, the music, introduction with one of the dogs, and cheerful directions. More please, whenever you have the time. 🙂

    Joe — Owie, owie, owie! You’ve got my total sympathy. The indignities we suffer in the name of pain relief! *shudder* I wish you could fly my chiropractor up from Indy to give you a treatment! “Dr. Diane” Vuotto has ninja skills and does not gleefully inflict pain. She is one of the great ones, gives a complete treatment, with diagnosis and instructions, within 10-15 minutes. She’s extremely effective, knowledgeable, and fast. And affordable. Can’t tell you how much money she’s saved me in doctor visits, tests, etc. A few years ago one reg. doc walked me down to the ER, because of arm/shoulder pain on the right side. Turns out it was nerve-related and Dr. Vuotto had me fixed up in one visit. Her diagnosis: sitting at a desk/using a mouse too much! (BoltBait was right.) Can your local friends recommend a good chiropractor?

    JeffW — Thanks for the wave on the return trip through Indy. Have been away from the blog due to pain issues, fatigue, and other project deadlines. I gritted my teeth after hearing about your knee. Oh, yikes! Am praying for your knee and rehabilitation (without surgery hopefully!) right now. And for easier physical therapy! (More cringing.) Jeepers, can they at least give you some lidocaine with that? :-/ My uncle and my dad have had knee trouble recently, and they call it “knee-monia.” Keep us posted!

    BoltBait & all of us — “Sitting is the new smoking.” You’re so right! Not only did my chiropractor say sitting was the problem, but I found the original article linking it to shortened life span. And even if people think, “Oh, that takes years,” something *else* doesn’t. I sit in a computer chair too much, and tuck my feet under. Guess what happened? Yours truly ended up with *superficial* blood clots in my leg. Yes, more than once, even after becoming more active, and getting a new laptop so I can put my feet up. I’m still spending too much time sitting. (I’m sure working split shifts doesn’t help.)

    article; at the jump to LA Times, look for ‘assessing the damage’ subhead

  25. Akemi’s chickpea salad is a hit! 😀

    I didn’t think I’d like the sugar in it, but I did. I also didn’t think I’d like it roasted, but I do. I made one ‘mistake’ in that hubby called right when I took it out of the oven and so I didn’t get the basil in quick enough for it to wilt, but otherwise it was perfect! Also, I didn’t have any bird’s eye chili, so I used habanero…Ay, caramba! 😮

    Biggest surprise in making this? I actually had parchment paper. 🙂


  26. Joey, I think we have a problem. After watching several of Akemi’s cooking videos, Mr. Das has developed a crush on your gal. And no, I don’t mean Lulu. 😉

    I’m loving Akemi’s vids, too! Next up? I’m going to make a gluten-free version of the mini sour cream apple crisps…I just need to pick up a couple ramekins. I like the recipes I’ve watched so far because they’re simple and easy and quick to make. Also, now I think I have a crush on Akemi, too. 😛


  27. My (learned) advice would be to go to a Physiotherapist. I thought I had pulled a groin muscle and it turned out my hip joint was out of alingment!

  28. Oh, and if your doing deep lunges, and squats as part of your exercise regime, I would consider either not doing them at all, or not doing them deeply. There are a lot of muscles that go from your back, around your hip and join god knows where, some even attach deep inside the gluteus maximus! My physio knew what my problem was just by looking at the way I stood and walked 🙂 Good luck!

  29. Sorry to hear about your pain (and @JeffW cyst under the knee? UGH)

    Wish I could have you see my alternative medicine physical therapist. She uses a combination of techniques. My left hip was hurting pretty bad when I saw her this morning, but once she released some other things in my body and did gentle spine work it feels better. Are you seeing Bam-Bam’s massage therapist by chance? The way he described it it sounded like torture but for him no–it wasn’t hard enough.

    I was very excited to see Echoes is going to be made. I saw a 10-minute preview of it a year or two back and it looked wonderful.

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