Dead Sea to Green Tea
by Igor

Hello: I have the luck to live in Germany and fortunately my private medical insurance pays me a full three week Dead Sea treatment for around $300 (which is the ONLY medical insurance in Germany that does this after the great restructuring of medical care here.... No honey rivers anymore...).

It is my belief, after two years of seeing my P growing and not reacting for long to any treatment, that the whole illness is a tricky illusion.

I have watched with anger when a new small red dot appeared and then gets bigger and bigger while I can't do anything about it. In my whole family tree there are NO occurrences of P or other skin diseases. My own P started on my head and spread slowly but painfully over my body. Now my scalp is completely affected and overall I'm about 15%.

Some months ago I had an unlikely scene. I went to a small Japanese store to buy Green tea. The woman behind the counter was a middle age Japanese. I sked her for the green herbs. While I was paying she noticed the red spots on my arms. I said, "This is nothing to worry about, blah blah blah...." The usual self-hiding stuff ... maybe you know.

The woman looked very interested. She knows about this type of disease and suggested I try the "GOTU KOLA" herb, which is available as tea in good nutrition shops. It's hardly drinkable (tastes like a nutty root fresh out of the earth... yuck). She suggested I apply it to my lesions and that maybe in some weeks they would disappear. She added that this treatment would not "cure" my disease, that it was an "illusion" (if it worked). The real cause is a big question mark.

Another story: I met a women whose psoriasis went away after four years when she got a divorce. She had thought she was "lucky" in her marriage and called it a "well-driven partnership" with plans for children, but IN her she wanted to be another person, one with many "friends" and worldwide travel. It was a fight between who she was and who she wanted to be. A mind twist.
-Igor

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Ed's Response:

Dear Igor: Flake was read in manuscript by half a dozen people sojourning at the Mor Clinic at the Dead Sea in 1996. The response, in a nutshell, was we found your book funny, but why didn't you end it by telling people there was hope if they come here? I also received a packet of information from the Mor Clinic describing their treatment in depth, along with some research papers and a letter encouraging me to come try it myself. My response to all of this is a chapter in More Flakes, which hasn't been published, yet. In another nutshell, I say in that response, "Great! If you can afford it."

I enjoyed your recounting of the Japanese lady's observation that her herb treatment was "an illusion." Most treatments, at this time, are illusions (palliating the symptoms and not addressing the root cause). The metaphor of a magician creating the "illusion" that he can defy gravity by levitating a person is apt: Drive the lesions into temporary remission and we can create the "illusion" that we're not psoriatic!

The lady who found relief-through-divorce is lucky. I've been down that road twice and had the opposite reaction. Believe me, I've been waiting for someone to email me with news that sex/marriage/intimacy are somehow related to psoriasis ... so far no one has stepped forward with that news. Once I thought about telling a lady, "I'll marry you if you can cure my psoriasis," but I was afraid she would counter with, "I'll marry you if you can make me wealthy." In retrospect, I suppose if she could have cured my psoriasis I might have been able to make her wealthy. Oh well.
-Ed

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