Hello Friends, Here is what's coming up: Meeting TOMORROW 1:00 p.m. at the Senior Center. Betty will lead a separate session for care partners. The rest of us will have "Open Microphone" sharing where we are with PD. Coming on November 18, Dr. Ro, of Swedish Hospital in Seattle, will give a talk at Alaska Regional Hospital. The topic is to be announced. If you plan to attend please RSVP to 425-433-8269
So now I am "Former Daily News cartoonist" Peter Dunlap-Shohl. I knew this day was coming, and feared it. I've been cartoonist for the Daily News for so long, it was a major component of my identity. And before I became the actual Daily News cartoonist, I was an aspiring editorial cartoonist, going back as far as the fifth grade.
In the six years since my diagnosis, I have struggled to maintain my viability as a cartoonist. I've been dancing on quicksand, learning to use new programs and expanding into animation and increasing the writing I did for the paper. All the while trying to shrug off the weight of Parkinson's Disease as it dragged relentlessly at my every movement.
Then word came that our paper was looking for voluntary reductions in staff. Reductions that would be come involuntary should too few volunteers come forward.
After weighing my assets and liabilities, I decided that it was time for me to go. Time to step aboard, or maybe in front of, the Express Bus to the Future. Ironically, it is my experience with Parkinson's that helped absorb the blow.
After the initial shock and hysteria following my diagnosis, I discovered strengths, resources and skills I didn't realize I had. After surviving word that one has a debilitating progressive disease, loss of a mere job doesn't seem as momentous.
Plus I have a terrific support system of family and friends.
The upshot is that we are not brushing up on our street begging skills yet... although when we get there, we're going to have DESIGNER SIGNS, baby!
Having ejected from the mothership into cyberspace, I have established a new cartoon and humor blog "Frozen Grin". This will be the home of my future editorial cartoons and animations. I also intend to post a variety of creative projects here and am excited about the possibilities.
The first post is the web debut of my newest animation, XT and Me, the second installment of my blockbuster space trilogy. To see the new blog, just click here.
Welcometo all with an interest in Parkinson's Disease. This blog was to be an information clearinghouse for the Anchorage Parkinson's Disease Support Group, where meeting schedules, agendas, speakers etc could be found. It's still that, but has also become a sort of therapeutic hobby. So I invite you to join in the discussion and experience a little therapy as well. This will be as interesting as we as a community make it. Think loud and sound off!
Our Support group meets the third Saturday of each month at 3:30 in the afternoon. The meetings take place at the Anchorage Pioneer Home , 923 West 11th Avenue in downtown Anchorage on the fifth floor in the West lounge. You may call 350-9691 with questions about the group and meetings.
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The Knight Digital Media Center, judges of the Alaska Press Club's annual journalism awards selected The Alaska Parkinson's Rag for second place in the "Best Blog" category for 2008. Here is an excerpt of their comments:
"...Alaska Parkinson's Rag is many things: a community resource, a humor column, a science and medicine explainer. But it's also something that few blogs ever manage to be: addictive and gripping. Everything seems to work just right on this blog, and it is a powerful testament to what a person can achieve in this medium. "