Friday, December 28, 2007
My dear cousin David was on the cover of the local metro section of my Oakland Tribune this morning, and I was touched and thrilled. He lived the rest of the day as the splash image for insidebayarea.com.
Leventhal said fun spurs production of dopamine, a chemical messenger between nerve cells that enables smooth, coordinated movement. People with Parkinson's have abnormally low dopamine levels. A videotaped dance class won rave reviews at the International Congress on Parkinson's Disease in Berlin in 2005.
"People are having fun and chemically that is very important," one participant commented.
In Oakland, a photographer asked the group's permission to shoot from inside their circle.
"Sure, as long as you wear this nose," said a man brandishing a bright red rubber clown's nose. The group howled as he tucked it back into his pocket.
While seated, the students rolled up onto the balls of their feet. They kicked, pointed and flexed.
"This wakes up those nerves and can help you balance," Leventhal said.
And what makes it all sweeter, is that one of the dancers, by sheer coincidence is one of my father's oldest, dearest friends from his Fieldston days...He's pictured below.