Heisenberg Lives!

Bryan Cranston is currently on Broadway, starring as Lyndon Johnson in play titled All the Way.

After a recent performance, a young man named Stefan Montana approached him and asked him to recite a famous line from Breaking Bad, in hope of convincing a girl to be his prom date.

Here’s what Maddie saw:

Of course she said “Yes”.

Unexpected Treat at Dupont Circle Farmers’ Market

There’s a Farmers’ Market near Dupont Circle every Sunday. When I got there today, the first thing I saw was this sign:



Zaytinia is one of my favorite DC restaurants.   I’ve previously posted about it here and here. Zaytinya is owned by José Andrés, who trained under Ferran Adrià at El Bulli, and is credited with bringing tapas to America.  He’s won more awards than you can count, hangs out w/Anthony Bourdain, and seems like a genuinely nice guy.  Providing this little free treat is v much in character.

But see my note at the end of this posting.

Full Lamb 3

Full Lamb

Michael Costa

Chef Michael Costa



It addition to his many other achievements, Andrés recently added a new entry to his CV:   He’s the “Cuisine Consultant” for the television show Hannibal.

I swear this tasted like chicken….

A Little Background on the Cause and Course of My Recent Hospitalization

Back in 2002, I was diagnosed as having a probable case of bronchiolitis obliterans with organizing pneumonia, which at the time was called “BOOP”.   (They don’t call it that any more, probably because it sounded terminally ridiculous.  Nowadays, it’s known as “COPD”).  It put me in the hospital for close to three weeks, followed by another seven weeks recuperation at home.   Here’s how the American Lung Association describes it:

“Bronchiolitis obliterans with organizing pneumonia (BOOP) is a rare lung condition in which the small airways (bronchioles) and air exchange sac (alveoli) become inflamed with connective tissue. This is an uncommon illness occurring in one study in 6 out of 100, 000 hospitalizations. It usually starts with a flu-like illness associated with fever, malaise, fatigue and cough. The cough may be persistent and troubling. There is shortness of breath with exertion and weight loss occurs in about half of patients.

“This condition is a form of interstitial [within the fine supporting tissue of the lung] pneumonia of unknown origin.

“Treatment usually but not always results in significant improvement. However recurrences are common and patients should be periodically monitored with chest radiography, especially in the first year after treatment”.

From the American Lung Association

It’s nasty.

I’ve had recurrences ever since–first annually, then every other year or so.  Until this year, that meant 2 – 3 weeks of flu-like symptoms, followed by 4 – 6 weeks of frequent, terrible coughing spasms that could last 5 or 10 minutes each.

The recurrences seemed to be diminishing in both length and severity until this year’s incident, when, at about 5 in the morning of the fourth day, things suddenly went medieval, and I found myself unable to breathe.

Ambulance to the George Washington University Hospital Emergency Room, where an absolutely amazing team swooped in on me for the initial evaluation.  From there, it was a quick trip to the Intensive Care Unit–the GWU ICU is where they took Ronald Reagan after he was shot during the 1981 assassination attempt–intubation, lung fluid extraction, and four days of incredibly good care from GWU’s superb medical staff.

On Monday night, when I was out of imminent danger, I was transferred to Holy Cross Hospital in Silver Spring, Maryland, for a few days of pre-release observation.  I’ve since met with both my primary care physician and a pulmonary specialist, with further appointments scheduled for later this month.  I’m also still on medication and compressed oxygen, but I’m feeling much, much better.

And that’s where things stand.

What the Well-Dressed ICU Patient Should Wear

GWU ICU Hospital Gown

GWU ICU Hospital Gown

Now that is style!

This is the color-coded hospital gown for the George Washington University Medical Center Intensive Care Unit.  Note the matching socks.

Maybe it was an echo of my time in New Orleans last month, but when I was riding a gurney between my room and various scanning-and-testing sites, festooned with tubular attachments  and wearing my bright yellow garment, I couldn’t help but feel I was part of some kind of miniature Mardi Gras float.  If I’d had any beads, I would have tossed them to people in the halls as I passed by.

(No, I didn’t steal the hospital gown.  At least, not really.  After four days in the GWU ICU, I was transferred to Holy Cross Hospital, and the gown went with me.  I suppose I could mail it back, but I doubt GWU wants it.  And I do.)

I’m now recuperating at home after a nasty bout of pneumonia, which has kept me from posting anything the last couple of weeks.  I’m back now, and will have some catch-up notes over the next few days.

Things are definitely looking up!