My Blind Masseuse Has Rhythm

percussion massage
I had an amazing experience yesterday that opened my eyes and made me extremely happy:

I got a massage here in Hue, Vietnam. You go to the institute for the blind down this random back alley. Paying the $3 for the massage is apparently a valuable contribution to their community.

Traditional massage in Vietnam involves a lot of percussive massage techniques. I had already gotten a couple massages here and experienced the style and didn’t think too much about it.

I wasn’t even sure if a blind masseuse would be any good. But right away It turned out to be an eye opener. He wasn’t just chopping and punching my arms, he was playing them like a drum! This guy jammed out like Dave Grohl for the entire hour!

I was smiling and laughing and I was so happy it made me cry. I had no idea that you could do that! This one hour massage combine two awesome ideas into one.

Ever since I was a kid I have been beating on every random object from plastic water cooler jugs to spoons to tabletops to actual drums sets. I love it so much that I even included drumming on my bucket list. I was excited to learn that the average rock beat cadence is the same as the average foot step cadence (120) – beats are hardwired. I have an excuse!

On top of making me happy, the musical massage reminded about the amazing power of combining ideas. Brilliant ideas often come from combining two things: The camera and the phone, peanut butter and jelly, yearbooks and the internet (social networks).

If you ever run out of ideas, don’t worry, just take two already good ones and smash them together. Not all the good ones are taken, I guarantee you – bread and meat were around thousands of years before the Earl of Sandwich layered them together.

I would have never thought of combining percussion music with massage, but someone did and it was awesome.

Question: What two ideas do you want to try mashing together? Leave your answer in the comments section below.


  1. cb says

    Great article, fun experience. My first thought was….water/sleeping (but there’s already the waterbed!)
    I’ll give this some more thought.

    • says

      Thanks! I agree, there must be a cool way to combine water and sleeping. I have heard some interesting stories about sleeping (in water) in those sensory deprivation chambers.

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