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Richard Crowson: Medicinal Bluegrass

I have a health care proposal. It’s not about insurance availability or doctor choice. It’s not about single-payer or public option issues. But it is about our health. Our mental health. We need to take all the minutes from all the health care reform town hall meetings, take all the breathless commentaries from red-faced conservatives and blue-in-the-face liberals, put all that stuff in a lockbox, throw the lockbox in a closet for about a week, and get ourselves down to the Cowley County Fairgrounds in Winfield, Kansas.

That’s where the Walnut Valley Festival is taking place from today through Sunday. It’s the best prescription I know of for relief of mental stress. Sitting around a campfire with old friends, swapping songs with new friends, checking out the hot licks from all the hotshot instrumentalists who come to the contests, strolling through the dozens and dozens of craft booths, grabbing a turkey leg, corn on the cob and a lemonade and planting yourself in the grandstand to watch some of the best acoustic music acts in the world perform—that’s gonna improve your mental health like little else can.

This’ll be my 23rd year to lower my blood pressure by “taking the cure” at Winfield. But I’m practically a newbie compared to some who have been going since 1972.

And this is your invitation to come and relieve a little tension. It’s not socialized medicine, it’s not Obamacare.

It’s Old Banjo Care. Medicinal bluegrass.

I’ll see you down at Winfield. Pre-existing conditions are welcomed. And if that condition is stress and tension, you’re gonna feel better in no time!

Richard Crowson is not only a editorial commentator for KMUW. He's also a cartoonist, an artist and a banjo player.