Carol: interesting about the viral thing; I had shingles in college actually. I'll try the tincture; can't hurt i guess. (any more than all the ibuprofen I'm taking).
Mrrzy: Thanks for those stretches! I will try them. I am shocked to hear you think the Alexander technique made thinsg worse; I wonder if you had a bad teacher??
am starting the diet tonight; no red meat or dairy or white flour or sugar or alcohol or coffee for at least a week! (that may kill me quicker than the back pain)