I'm undergoing acupuncture for my Bell's Palsy (which is partly what inspired the current Night Shift storyline) and it does appear to be having a measurable effect. The trouble is that I also spent last week scarfing down powerful drugs, so for all I know that's what's been causing my condition to improve. And on top of that, this is the kind of thing that's been known to just go away with no treatment whatsoever.
Still, the day after my second treatment (which was last monday), my face was noticably more mobile, so I'm thinking it is the acupuncture. Which is almost a shame, because it's costing me a fair amount of money, and now that it's producing results, I gotta keep going back. Blast! Stupid Asians and their effective medicine!
It's turned out to be pretty similar to what I'd envisioned for the most part. My doctor, a Korean gentleman named Dr. Yoo, lays me on my back, takes these little fine needles encased in plastic tubes and SPROINGS them out into the back of my feet, my spine, the back of my head, and the flesh of my thumbs on the back of my hands (plus the corresponding area on my feet). OK, so it doesn't actually go "SPROING", the point is that the needles are tapped out forcefully from their containment tube. Then he attaches a bunch of electrodes (I think--I don't get a very clear look at this bit) and charges it up, leaving me alone with my fun fun thoughts for 20 minutes. Then out go the needles, I'm flipped on my front, and I get more needles in my belly and around the affected area on my face, including riiiiiiight under the eyeball (these needles are even finer than the other ones) and in my upper lip. Again with the electrodes for 20 minutes, I'm slathered in goop to disinfect the holes, and I'm done.
Sometimes I barely feel a thing when the needles go in; sometimes it's exactly as painful as being pricked with a pin (the back of my feet and lip always seem to hurt the most). Oh, for the record, I'm covered with rubbing alcohol, or the Korean equivalent, before the needles go in, too. However, there's usually bleeding in a few places when the needles come out. Once, when the electrodes went in, I actually got a shock; otherwise, it's a low-level throbbing. After the treatment I'm a little bit wiped out, too. So yes, it's a stressful experience, not hugely helped by Dr. Yoo's so-so grasp of English and the always-nagging concern that I'm not safely in the hands of the mainstream medical establishment. Because you know that's always a safe place to be.
Plus, the commute is a pain.
But anyway, things are looking up, so hopefully after this weekend I'll be back on a regular update schedule. Things are a bit busy and I don't want to stress myself out, so I'm not going to update this sunday (the 13th), but after that it should be back to normal.
Aaaaaaaanyway. On a happier note, I thought I'd take the opportunity to point towards some entertaining comics blogs. I've become addicted to them lately, and there are some terrific ones out there, laden with snark and wit and goofiness, that I check every day. The latest one I've discovered is by fellow Torontonian Christopher Bird, the humbly titled MightyGodKing. It's been especially interesting lately since Bird's a law student and he's weighed in on the whole Superman court decision.
Mike Sterling's Progressive Ruin is a reliable workhorse of a site by a guy who runs a comic shop and thus has an actual useful perspective on the business. Updates every day, rain or shine, which is always a big plus in my book. The Savage Critics is a site featuring several of the most articulate and intelligent comics reviewers on the web, and makes for a great jumping-off point to other blogs, so I don't have to point you to them. For even more savagery, there's the sorta-controversial-but-not-really-if-yo
Still not enough bile for you? Then get thee hence to Your Webcomic Is Bad And You Should Feel Bad, a truly mean-but-neccessary site that takes it on itself to tear into bad webcomics, some of them popular, some of them obscure, almost always with good reason. As the site's authors point out, there's little or no true objective criticism in the webcomics world, and the fact that you're not making money or hurting anyone doesn't mean you should be exempt. Some of the strips they dig up are really appalling, others provide a window into self-absorption and ultra-niche pandering, still others demonstrate the dangers of the form: without critical prodding, otherwise good or could-have-been good strips can really spiral off into wankery. This site tries to compensate with hilariously nasty and cutting punditry. If you're one of its targets, it's out to make you cry. It's not fair, but neither is life.
My personal vote for funniest comic blog, though, is an easy call: Chris Sims' Invincible Super-Blog, written by a gentleman who manages to deftly walk the line between elegantly-crafted bon mots and hypercaffeinated excitement. Sims clearly just plain loves comics, and (in contrast to the above site) even the stuff he tears into seems like it's being showered with affection, particularly the seemingly-awful "Anita Blake" series which makes for a major obsession of his. And the man posesses a gift for writing variations of the phrase "This is pretty much the greatest comic in the history of the universe" in almost every single entry without it ever getting boring.
Fourth World Fridays as usual tomorrow, but there'll be a slight change to the format. Until then, don't stab yourself with anything sharp.