Well, I certainly would not have chosen this route to re-evaluating my life.

I have always been possessed with a strong drive to achieve.

The past Five years have been a fairly unplanned roller coaster of conflicting emotions, and a nice amount of physical pain.

One the one hand my walking and movements has become much improved.

However, I have accepted that I will not play guitar again and am trying to move forward from that certainty. I do miss my “family”: my guitars and students.

I do have constant balance difficulties. I believe this is fairly typical with major Hemiparisis. My muscle tone is always active and attempting to pull me forward. My right toes and hand fingers curl when I focus my strength to do something. In other words my brain damage prevents me from accurately separating tasks from my affected side.

This occurs constantly either awake or asleep. Thus I do not get much sleep. Thank goodness my Aphasia does not prevent reading! However my thinking has become more precise, with constant work on retraining what is left of my brain.

I have recently focused my intellectual activities on studying Linux.
Fairly amazing -- a thousand or so varieties – much like being a guitar player who pursues different musical styles.

The old text is below. Feel free to browse it. It is quite pessimistic
I have delayed revising this page, for a long time. But now I see that I will never regain the use of my right hemisphere.

[That is:]I will never play guitar as a fingerpicker. Or have much use of my right side.
To Rephase:

Andy suffered a serious stroke just before Christmas, 2003

The stroke occurred on the left side of the neck (sort of like me: "a pain in the neck")
from a clot that no one can explain.

At this time (December 2006) he cannot use his right arm or play guitar. His right side is affected. As well as his speech. He's grappling with his Aphasia.

His walking is (is awkward)--from the hip mostly) and slow but is beginning/a "sometime thing"--not a pretty sight!

Why did this happen?
Sometimes there is no why.

Note: The Genetic factor in stroke prediction is Sorely ignored by the institutions that fund studies "whose goal is to enable stroke prevention.”

He watched his Dad drive his "health into the ground." So he learned from that (therefore he is still alive--and as ornery as ever).
Before the stroke Andy took care to jog regularly, and danced swing and stayed in shape!

He lived in a 5th floor walkup and went to a gym to workout regularly. Andy made sure to take care of his health. He ate all the right food, etc.. So much for statistics.

Life is can be strange.He misses not playing guitar; --Sorry: As of 2006 it does not look like he will ever regain "control of finger movements."

He is still lives by himself, but has moved to East 30 St. in Manhattan--to an upscale swanky building-- yes he finally succumbed to pressure. Even old dogs can learn new tricks, I guess.
Sometimes you can't beat heredity.

Back to Andy's Main Page

Some Stroke Info Sites

  • Aphasia Support Groups near NYC
  • Generation-S
  • BrainTalk Communities
  • StrokeInfo
  • Larry King show on CNN on Stroke 1-28-2005
  • StrokeNetwork
  • Email link:
    Say hi to Andy