Readers offer suggestions to those suffering from Empty Nose Syndrome
  • Readers offer suggestions to those suffering from Empty Nose Syndrome
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Soak Your Feet

Re: “Like Trying to Come up for Air,” July 7 cover story

I am a lifetime holistic chiropodist foot specialist. I’m 75 years old. I am a therapist and a holistic dietician. I have dealt with this condition before and have had great success. I would be more than happy to render my services to these suffering victims. In the meantime, I suggest they soak their feet in hot rock-salt water, and dry their feet really well afterwards. This will help to stimulate circulation and will render a wonderful night’s sleep.

I understand this condition. Your brain is being denied oxygen. That’s where the feeling of drowning comes in.

I am a court-certified holistic cheropodist — the age-old art of the ancient Egyptians. Cheropody is the art of healing holistically through the hands and feet. It is the modern-day mother of reflexology.

  • Nancy Cuskaden
  • via voicemail

Pure, unremitting hell

Pure, unremitting hell

The Joy of Breathing

Bravo to the Reader for raising awareness that undergoing the procedure of turbinectomy is no assurance that one’s breathing gets easier. On the contrary, the victims of the severely unpleasant aftereffects of the surgery report that it may feel “Like Trying to Come Up for Air.” The heartfelt testimonials of how frustrating it is to live with the absence of nasal sensation makes seem Cyrano De Bergerac like a lucky guy!

Jokes aside, my deep compassion goes to everyone who has any kind of breathing problem. I know how anxious, confused, depressed, helpless, insecure, irritable, tense, tired, scary and miserable it can feel when a primary organ of perception and intuition is blocked. Since birth, I have experienced chronically stuffy nose and sinus blockages, causing throat and ear infections. I’m often forced to breathe only through my mouth (confined for years to bed rest while other kids were playing outside). In communist Czechoslovakia, advanced medical procedures were not available. Luckily I was introduced to a poor man’s natural remedy: the twin-sister sciences of yoga and ayurveda, which I credit with helping me to regain the healthy function of my olfactory organs and a normal lifestyle — but more importantly, to experience the joy of breathing effortlessly!

My transformation inspired me to become a certified yoga therapist trained in various modalities specializing in respiratory issues, and the science of pranayama. To guide my clients into pleasant breathing experiences, managing pain, or facilitating better health and healing has been a rewarding experience. Living in La Jolla where the air is fresh and salty helps.

Here are a few tips (to be practiced with supervision at first), tailored for those who are dealing with ENS syndrome and related symptoms: For anxiety, helplessness and to adjust to this “altered identity” (often experienced due to the absence of nose sensations), direct the focus to other areas in the body, where ebb and flow of inhales and exhales are easily perceived, using a gentle, nonjudgmental touch (belly, ribs, lungs, etc.) For chronic fatigue, memory loss, and insecurity, it’s good to spend time in fresh air, connecting with nature’s healing power. For those who like to exercise, use simple, repetitive movements to increase breathing capacity naturally, provide more oxygen and prana/vital energy to the brain, lungs, organs, and muscles Gradually, confidence and strength will build up.

Chair yoga is a safe option for individuals fearful of fainting. There are an abundance of yogic tools to ease the mind, like mantras, mudras, chanting, and meditation, which can be practiced effectively in bed, while guided deep relaxation can be beneficial to restore the energy caused by sleep deprivation or depression. Also, for ENS patients who suffer from isolation, feelings of suffocation, a lack of motivation to exercise, or even to live, I sincerely hope there will be a compassionate friend, or a kind neighbor around to uplift your spirit when you need it!

But back to the nose, the intuitive insider. A common complaint is the dryness experienced in the nasal cavities and throat. There can be also several secondary contributing factors of a psychological and psychosomatic nature. So, my recommendations may vary from person to person (from nose to nose!), using the personalized approach of viniyoga, based on creatively adapting yogic techniques to the individual needs. In many cases, restorative and fully supported inversions (a true specialty of yoga) are effective for calming the mind. The reverse effect also allows the nose cavity and brain to receive a fresh supply of blood and other bodily fluids. The timing is crucial, as is good hygiene of the place where one is practicing, to prevent infection. Using specific oils, lubricants, or a cool mist humidifier can be helpful to pacify the symptoms, although the root of the problem may persist. With limited remedies on a physical level, one may need to concentrate on soothing the nervous system. By refining the awareness of how it is influenced by our emotional and mental states; one gains clarity with regards to which behavior patterns, dietary habits, or environments have drying and irritating characteristic and are best to be avoided Choose to seek situations which are more relaxing to the whole being.

For a person affected by ENS, perceiving the mystical presence of “void” is an advanced spiritual state. So instead of being troubled by persistent feelings of incompleteness one discovers a new sensation where feeling empty means wholeness as well as holiness! Any takers ?

  • Jaruska Solyova
  • M.A.RYT 500
  • La Jolla

Follow the Money

Your reporters do a great job of following the money. Thirty-five grand from the Qualcomm execs (chump change to them) to the mayor’s reelection campaign (“Balboa Park Plan Revived” has resulted in the zombie-like resuscitation of the Jacobs plan.

We don’t need a multilayered parking garage construction project from hell right behind the Organ Pavilion, not to mention the truly sickening desecration of the Laurel Street bridge. Keep the heavy, noisy construction equipment out of our park!

Same deal with your item about the ten-story building next to the park in Hillcrest (July 7, Neighborhood News, “Hillcrest’s Uptown Planners Wonder WTF”). Follow the money!

America’s Finest City is trying out a new slogan: America’s Most Corrupt City.

  • Name withheld
  • via voicemail

It Was Always Thus

Re: “Uptown Planners Wonder WTF,” Neighborhood News, July 7

In my experience here and in other cities, it’s true that the height allowance allows developers to build more units, but it’s almost never true that this makes the homes more affordable. The owner of a building with, say, 98% market rate units and perhaps 2% “affordable” is just having a laugh.

As for the difference between neighborhood or community plans and what actually happens, it was ever thus, and unless the powers that be are willing to hold developers’ feet to the fire on affordability — and I mean a big roaring blaze — then stop the posturing and just admit the truth of it: Money doesn’t just talk, it has a bullhorn and drowns out everything else.

  • Molly Larson Cook
  • Old Town/Hillcrest

Second Best Broth Not Available

It was with great anticipation I began reading the Best Buy column in the July 7th issue: best chicken broth/stock. Anyone who cooks knows how hard it is to find a good-tasting broth in a box, can, or jar — the easy way out after a ten-hour day at the office.

It was quite a disappointment to find the second place winner was from Fresh & Easy — a store that has been out of business for how long now? More than six months.

Maybe a little rewrite was in order. Is there no proofreading?

Thank goodness first place went to an overpriced Whole Foods item.

  • Ruth
  • Mira Mesa

This column was turned in as an “evergreen column” before the closing of the Fresh & Easy stores. We regret the oversight. — Editor

The Worst Old Globe Production by Far

I went to see the production of Macbeth at the Old Globe on Saturday, July 9. The most disturbing thing about this bad experience is that the announcements never mentioned that this is an interpretation — more like a nightmare really — rather than the play as it should have been. This production was worse than poor. It is the worst by far. I left at the first interval. I would have left earlier but stayed out of respect for the actors. The costumes and period were awful.

The witch scene was ridiculous, to say the least, and destroyed any chance of setting up the scene for what happened. If you are not aware, this is the scene that plants the seed of murder in Macbeth’s mind, and the director managed to mangle the words as well as the concept.

Macbeth returning home to tell Lady Macbeth of what transpired was changed into a raunchy sex scene that totally destroyed any chance of showing the power of Lady Macbeth and her resolve against Macbeth’s conscience and fears. The worst was still to come. That gatekeeper scene trying to have sex with a maid was disgusting in terms of acting and setting. Gyrating and pointing with an empty bottle is awful at best, and totally disgusting.

There were school children attending, I believe, and I hate to think what impression this stupid awful production left on them. The Globe should be ashamed for allowing this production and should stop it immediately.

  • Sam Madison-Jammal
  • North Park

William Cullen Bryant

William Cullen Bryant

No Noisy Big Mouth

I was glad to see the poem, “June,” by William Cullen Bryant (June 30). Your statement that Bryant was a New Yorker requires some correction. He was a Long Island man, as were Christopher Morley, Walt Whitman, John Howard Payne, and even, in a sense, F. Scott Fitzgerald and Thomas Martin.

A Long Islander is not, strictly speaking, a New Yorker, and can never be. The noisy big mouth New Yorker is a world apart from the Long Islander, in the true sense — a wanderer on endless beaches and dunes, a man of the open road.

Get that right.

  • Name withheld
  • via voicemail

The healing has been slow

The healing has been slow

Image courtesy of the San Diego Sheriff's Department

From the Perspective of the Trial Lawyer

I was disappointed to read the article shamelessly and erroneously entitled “Steal Beer and Die” (June 30 cover story). The bias reeked and was pointedly obvious when it became clear the author did not even bother to interview the attorneys who defended Sergeant Webb and the El Cajon Police Department. It appeared the agenda for the author was to once again smear Sergeant Webb, ignore testimony that did not fit that agenda, and blatantly simplify the scenario to fit the quip of an article title.

I was one of the trial lawyers who defended this case in court. I actually was on the witness stand reading to the jury the deposition testimony of St. Louis’s incarcerated friends who, in addition to other eyewitness testimony not mentioned in the article, described St. Louis running full speed at Webb, growling, with both hands in the air, as if he was going to tackle her. He was seriously intoxicated and ignoring her commands to stop. After he was shot, he stumbled back to the area of the car where he collapsed. His friends then picked him up and threw him into the car’s back seat, so full of liquor and beer they had to put him in upside down, before they sped away.

The article was correct that the plaintiffs gave up during trial, and during the plaintiff’s case in chief, while they were putting on their own evidence. I am disappointed that this article was even published so far after the fact, with the only effect of reopening old wounds for all concerned, while so obviously biased and with an agenda.

I have learned in my many years of defending civil cases, especially officer-involved shootings, that there are two sides to every story, regardless of how obvious things may appear at the outset. Christopher St. Louis was not shot for stealing beer, regardless of the sheer quantity stolen that day. He was shot because he chose to leave the car he and his friends were loading, and run directly, quickly and aggressively toward Sergeant Webb. If plaintiffs hadn’t given up during their own case, the jury would have unanimously agreed.

  • Mitchell Dean
  • Solana Beach

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Our Kind of Traitor ****

Challenge Met

Just read the first sentence of the movie review of Our Kind of Traitor, which starts with, “Quick! Name a memorable Ewan McGregor performance.” While Scott Marks (the reviewer) couldn’t come up with one, I immediately thought of Train Spotting, one of my faves.

I also have to watch The Island whenever I see it on, although it might have something more to do with Scarlett Johansson’s completely naïve clone act.

I haven’t seen Traitor, but I am impressed by the four-star rating.

Thomas McVeagh Lakeside

They will prey on the weakest member of a pack.

They will prey on the weakest member of a pack.

The “War” on Prostitution

In regards to the article about sex trafficking in San Diego. Prostitution is legal in some counties of Nevada. What does the research say about these sex workers? Are they, too, being coerced and abused, trafficked?

Prostitution is legal in many countries, including all of Mexico, all of Central and South America, much of Western Europe, England, Germany, etc. Some of these countries regulate this profession and some don’t. Are the sex workers in these countries experiencing the problems described in the article?

The point is obvious. How safe is prostitution for sex workers when it is legal and regulated?

The article states that sex trafficking grosses an estimated $810 million dollars annually in San Diego. The product is very good and the profits are very high. Sounds familiar. Maybe the government should create another completely bogus agency like the DEA and declare a “war” on sex trafficking. American culture meanwhile will continue selling everything using sexual images and sexual innuendo, but prohibit selling actual sex.

  • Name withheld
  • Encinitas

Pimps Are Still There

In “We Need Our Hearts Broken Over This” (June 23 cover story), someone was quoted as saying that there are no more prostitutes on El Cajon Boulevard nowadays, and that’s a lie.

I know, because I have a friend who lives on El Cajon Boulevard and when I go over there, I see a couple of those people that sit out there out night, and some of the pimps are still there. So, I’m kind of thrown back that they would say that it doesn’t go on anymore. I think they need to change that, and go investigate a little bit more. On 50th Street, on a green box, a lady sits there every day. She’s had babies and she’s back out there.

  • Teenya Jasper
  • Spring Valley
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