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Living with Schizoaffective Disorder

Of Open Mics and Stromboli

I regaled Bonita with stories of all the creative, fun and interesting things I did, but in all our years together I did none of them.

Michael David Crawford, Baritone,

Copyright © 2008 Michael David Crawford. All Rights Reserved.

Have you made it down to Tony Dimaggio's yet? Stromboli followed by Spumoni gelato could very well lead to the apocolypse.
-- undermyne

I've been meaning for eons to heed undermyne's advice and dine on the Stromboli at Tony Dimaggios. But it kept slipping my mind, and I also didn't really know where it was. And yes, there is Google Maps, but somehow I never made the connection.

Tony Dimaggios Italian Restaurant

But on the way home from visiting a friend who lives by the Monterey Highway in South San Jose, I looked off at the side of the road, and there it was: Tony Dimaggios!

I'm getting paid Thursday morning; Thursday evening that friend and I will be dining on Stromboli. I have to blow my paycheck on something after all.

In other news, today I finished the Partial Hospitalization Program. Between the PHP (!!!) and work I haven't had much free time, but now I do. I need a few days to get back into practice, so not this Thursday (NOT the 4th) but next Thursday (the 11th) I'll play the Open Mic at Bare Foot Coffee Roasters in Santa Clara, at 5237 Stevens Creek near Lawrence. ~<{( MAP)}>~

The show starts at 7:00 PM; all ages are welcome, and there is no cover charge - but do yourself a favor, buy a nice cup of coffee. It's the best in town.

If you can't make it on the 11th, I'm going to do my damnedest to play Open Mics at least once a week. There are Open Mics all over The Valley, and a couple in Santa Cruz, so they won't always be on Thursdays.

My shows will always be announced in advance on my homepage with full details on my live performance schedule.

A while back one of the PHP therapists took me aside and quietly asked me to stop flogging my free CDs at the other patients; she felt it distracted from the purpose of the group.

But today being my last day, I came prepared with enough for everybody - there were several new patients, who hadn't got one before. And what were they going to do? Throw me out?

"Nobody gets out of here without a free CD," I said.

I also presented the therapist with what I used to call a Polyflex, but which was actually invented by Buckminster Fuller, who called them Jitterbugs.

(My Polyflex page is just an Under Construction placeholder, but will soon have photos, videos and complete instructions for making Your Very Own Polyflex.)

The YouTube flick shows the triangular faces as solid, but my Polyflex is made of four inch long, quarter inch wide wooden dowels, with the joints made of crossed latex tubing. But it moves the same way as the YouTube video, and the resilience of the tubing makes it quite lively.

Back when I was a UCSC student, two friends and I had a business of making Polyflexes and selling them to toy stores all over the San Francisco and Monterey Bay Areas. But I haven't made one in at least fifteen years.

A number of times during our relationship Bonita told me she felt I had ripped her off. When we were first dating, I regaled her with stories of all the creative, fun and interesting things I did: drawing, painting, photography and sculpture; music of course; bicycle touring; woodworking; traveling all over Western North America, as well as Western Europe; backpacking in the High Sierra; and finally scuba diving.

But during the eleven years we have been together, including eight years of marriage, I - and so, we - did none of that. And in fact I had quit doing most of it long before Bonita and I ever met. All I ever did was work, and sleep. Oh yeah: and write like a Mad Man.

But - and you must understand, this is because of my experiences both on the inpatient unit and the Partial Hospitalization Program - I am doing many of these things again. And I expect to do a great many more things, not just stuff I used to do, but many new things, things I have only dreamed of before.

I made one improvement to my Polyflex production process just today. The hinges are made of two short pieces of latex tube; one has a hole punched in it, the other goes through that hole, making a flexible cross.

I found it very difficult to punch the holes with a paper punch, so this afternoon on the way home from the hospital, I stopped at Orchard Supply Hardware and bought a rotary leather punch. Best thing since sliced bread, and it only set me back eleven ninety-nine.

I am just dying to tell you all about how these many wonders came to pass - but the time is not yet ripe. Soon though, soon.

Oh, yeah, one final note - there were pianos both in the inpatient unit and in the PHP room. So I got to perform for all the other patients. Some of them actually enjoyed it.

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