Category Archives: Autobiography


My mother’s mother was born a Haunstetter, the eldest of three children: Emilia, Louis and Anna. Louis and Anna emigrated to the U.S. in the early 1900. My mother was born in 1907 to a girl who was barely seventeen and had no more children. Anna never married and louis had one son, Norman, who was found ahot to death in the trunk of his car in his early thirties. My great grandfather also had a brother, Adam Haunsteetter, who dies in California about 1941. My mother and I arrived in 1949, but did not stay in California for long. We left for Chile in 1954 and were back in the U.S. within the year.
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I wonder if the personification of the immaterial, as well as idolatry, is a consequence of the disregard for the person. Or perhaps the distinction between spirit and body prevents the whole person from being perceived. German has an interesting word, “Gestalt.” I think it was used to define a kind of psychological perspective. But, in everyday use, it refers to something more substantial, an entity as it is perceived. “Gestell,” refers to structure and/or posture. What in English might be called body language. In either case it is a unified whole composed of components that are visually perceived.
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Columbia Hospital for Women

The place where I thought I’d die 57 years ago today. Her father asked what time our daughter was born and I could not tell him. Because after a day and a half on the maternity floor without food or water, I was near delirious and they put me under anesthesia to deliver the baby. When I woke several hours later, she was in the nursery and very pink and bald.
At least, when they brought me a tan baby with dark hair in the middle of the night, I was able to tell them that was the wrong one. The nurse checked the wrist bands and took the bundle away. Then they would not let me leave the hospital until I had evacuated my bowls. So, I spent about a week in the Columbia Hospital for Women, which is now a condominium.

Diagnosis, Disorder and Disease

A cursory review of psychological concerns suggests that, absentstrategies to secure cures, the medical professions have become hooked on diagnosis and diagnostic testing. I was steuck by that during the first year of the pandemic whne testing was all the rage and hardly anyone seemed bothered by the fact that only 8-10% were positive and, apparently, not relevant to transmisability. Perhaps I was jaundiced by my recent experience with the cardiologist whose tests suggested a defective heart valve and “confirmed” the Afib I was already aware of. His attitude suggested that he had really achieved something in coming up with his diagnosis.
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What is to be said about the kerfuffle at the Capitol? Democracy is having birth pangs and some people want it aborted in the last minute. Sending a playboy to do the job was a bad idea.
Perhaps I am just remembering that I took a Playboy Magazine to my last parturition and then had to ask the nurse to retrieve it from the obstetrician.
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