I carried a notepad in my back pocket all summer. I scribbled ideas, reminders, email address and recommendations. I'm chipping away at this stack of tasks I set for Future Me.
One of the first things I wanted to track down was Carl Hammerschlag's quote from ClownVets.
At Gesundheit! Institute, we sat for a screening of the documentary ClownVets. Here's the synopsis: War Veterans with PTSD along with Patch Adams MD reconnect with love, compassion and friendship by experiencing humanitarian clowning in Guatemala.
It's a story that starts in the deep trenches of stark depression and becomes a powerfully uplifting, colorful, optimistic vision. If you would like a glimpse into the Gesundheit! Institute humanitarian clown trip experience, here's your opportunity. It's available in full on YouTube.
One of the longtime partners of Gesundheit! was the late Carl Hammerschlag, MD. I'm sorry I'll never get the chance to meet or learn from him in person. I found the clips of him in ClownVets fascinating. His words and even his delivery and voice struck a chord. I'm looking forward to learning a lot from the work he left us with.
Here's the piece I wrote myself a note to track down:
To connect with people at a heartfelt level is the need we have in this world. To break down the barriers that separate us. Clowns have served the purpose throughout history of lightening the mood. They diffuse anxiety, they help us see that the emperor has no clothes, and they get away with it.
They look at the familiar from a new perspective, and that's what we'll hope we do on this trip. Here's an opportunity to write a new ending to the old story.