March 21, 2008

A Message of Love from NYC

To Friends Of Scotty Hard

Scott continues his journey through the different floors and care units of the Bellevue Hospital system. New teams of doctors and care givers come and go as Scott moves through different phases of recovery. The Trauma Center sawbone guys are gone now for the most part. As you all know two weeks ago Scott was on his way to the rehab phase on the 6th floor. With the spinal reconstructive surgery begginning to heal, therapists even got Scott sitting up twice in a chair for brief periods. Although an enormous effort, Scott was excited and heartened to finally get out of the sack for the first time since the crash of February 16. Unfortunately, with new surroundings and new exposure to increased floor traffic, Scott contracted a nasty case of pneumonia by weeks end. This setback caused the doctors to bring Scott back up to the Trauma Center ward on the 10th floor last Friday afternoon where he could be closely monitored during treatment. After a rough 5 days of antibiotics and other medicines, by Tuesday this week Scott had regained enough lost ground and strength to leave the Trauma Center once more, this time to the 16th floor rehab center, where he continues his recovery for the time being.

As always, his spirit and good humor abound no matter what. He has a good appetite, but with the injury having so many challenges, he's also trying to abide as closely as he can by the doctors wishes to be careful with his intake. The staff in general has become much more strict in monitoring all his intake, even down to the mil of water. To this end he had to take the unusually harsh measure of instructing his friends to stop bringing too much fruit and other foods since the Jamaican nurse told him "You cannaht have de place lookin' like a mahketplayce mon". Scotty does what he's told!

In the meantime, the incredible and bewildering swell of support for Scott's situation continues. The Concert For Scotty Hard at the Highline Ballroom on Wednesday night was an unprecedented success. Organized by Liz Penta and Peter Costello, there is and will be no end to the gratitude I feel towards their effort and skill. They built some house, and the people came. Amazing. Sold out, jammed, full of love and powerful music, with a 2 hour lineup around the block waiting for people to exit so more could come in. In 20 years of living in New York City, I've never witnessed a more exciting phenomenon then the coming together of the musicians community and their friends, family, industry colleagues, and the ever-essential fans to help a fellow music maker in trouble, the kind of trouble every one of us risks everyday by living and operating without a safety net of affordable health care. The jazz avante garde community especially. One of the strangely beautiful things is that, like a deepest musical wish come true, it's all somehow happening completely outside the box, commercial free, no front page pictures of bitter tears of pain, frustration and despair. Pain breeding beauty. Musician or not, each in his or her own way seems to be finding the inspiration to make a difference by re-connecting with their passion for their own work. The question begs "why isn't life more like this all the time?" The answer is, because of this concert, the reasons behind it, I think it is.

For those of you unable to be at this concert, don't worry, everyone there knew that the place was jammed full of love way beyond what the walls could hold. This event was well documented both audio and visual, and will be shared with everyone when the work is done.

There's a long way to go, but it's a good road.


1 comment:

  1. Hi Dennis,
    I think Scott really appreciates getting mail--he mentioned it today. If anyone wants to write, just address it to Scott Harding c/o Bellevue Hospital, 462 First Avenue, New York, NY 10016. Right now he's in room 6W-46B.