People everywhere appreciate what they deem to be “good posture,” but news reports indicate that the North Korea has taken this appreciation to an extreme.  The message seems to be, “Watch your neck when employed by radical dictatorships.”

Save your neck--stay alert

Crime and Punishment

It seems unbelievable, but a certain Vice Premier Kim Yong Jin, 63, was executed in July with an anti-aircraft guy for having a “disrespectful posture” (Huffington Post) or, alternatively, “for not keeping his posture upright” (Reuters) at the Supreme People’s Assembly in June.  Mr. Kim’s photo above, taken during happier days, is from a video report posted by Arirang News.

The details of Vice Premier Kim’s actual crime are very unclear.  Was he caught slouching or was he straining up to hold a rigid military posture?  Or, worse still, was he sleeping on the job?

Whatever the nature of his transgression, if Kim had only studied the Alexander Technique, he might still be alive today, quietly polishing his medals instead of pushing up the daisies in some obscure corner of Pyongyang.  After all, Kim had been Minister of Education, and what form of education could be more important than that offered by the Alexander Technique — learning to make the best possible use of one’s whole self in everyday activity?

Study the AT to economize on cosmetic costs

In other news not involving anti-aircraft-gun-related fatalities, I was walking on Bleecker Street recently and noticed that the Sisley Boutique there was prominently advertising a new “neck cream.”  This product, priced at $180 for a 1.6 ounce jar, touts itself as a “firming formula specifically designed for the skin on the throat.”  Boasting extracts of such obscure plants as rhatany and lady’s mantle, Sisley says this pricey goo will “redefine the contours of the throat; fight visible signs of aging and the appearance of lines; and firm, smooth and refine the skin’s texture.”

It’s unclear whether Sisley’s product works at all, but what IS clear is that anyone interested in really helping their neck should bypass the cosmetics counter and head straight to a certified teacher of the  Alexander Technique (like this guy).  The healthiest way to firm up sagging jowls is to allow the neck to be free and the head to regain an easy, upright poise at the top of the spine.

All the cream in the world won’t help a neck like the one Sisley uses to advertise its new product.  A neck that’s persistently stuck forward and away from the rest of the spine with the head tilted back and down will likely cause a person serious trouble down the line.

For the price of one tiny jar of Sisley’s neck cream you can buy nearly three AT lessons from Alexander Technique Now, LLC.  Or for the price of Sisley’s “Global Anti-Age Cream” which retails for the low, low price of merely $490 for a 1.7 ounce jar you can buy a whopping seven lessons.  Or for the price of a gently used anti-aircraft gun, you can buy a lifetime supply of lessons.  The correct choice among these options is quite obvious… study the AT!