Friday, February 17, 2006

Anger is the way.

Not being alive in the 70s, I missed out on a lot, like polyester clothing and 70s pop psychology. I've seen Annie Hall but I didn't even know books like How to Be Awake and Alive existed. Now that my parents are throwing away their unwanted literature I own a copy of this book (don't give up on being awake and alive guys, Kevin will move out oneday... and you'll find a new hobby to replace slaving after him). I will share the only exerpt I've read because I have three hours to kill. Its research for a comic I'm collaborating on.

from "Chapter 5 / I'm angry unto death"

"Very early in my practise, I was treating a woman who was very depressed. One day she came in and told me she was thinking of killing herself. As I listened to her, I found myself admiring her blouse and wondering who had ironed it so perfectly. I scolded myself for doing this -- 'How can you be so callous? This poor woman is talking about killing herself and you're wondering who ironed her blouse.'

At that moment my patient said, 'I did all my ironing yesterday.'

The experience was very frightening to me. But as I thought about it that evening, I realized what had gone through my mind: 'She is dressed perfectly. Her blouse is ironed exquisitely. How can she be getting ready to kill herself?'

The experience helped me to trust my own perceptions.

Okay. The woman with the pressed blouse wasn't really suicidal, and "The Little Match Girl" was putting on an act, and getting herself caught up in it. Then what was depression?"

Lets see, the authors go on to say the cure for depression is anger and tell a pretty story about getting a new patients old therapist to come in and demand help from her in dealing with his dreams in order to enrage her and cure her of her depression.

You can purchase a copy for 1 cent off amazon or if you like I'll send it to you. If you're actually depressed I don't think this is going to help.


Blogger Brendan said...

"(don't give up on being awake and alive guys, Kevin will move out oneday... and you'll find a new hobby to replace slaving after him)."

beautifully put...

I really appreciate this post, I know mom and dad's bookshelves contain a lot of shit like this - dont let them purge too much too fast now...

actually somewhere on that shelf is probably the blame for my gayness - the infamous but never seen "let them choose their own toys" book

thanks for not imposing gender roles, mom and dad.

10:16 PM  
Blogger allie said...

i would love to publish some of my fabulous poetry in a comic.
i would also really love to read that book.

and i think any value village themed poetry is probably fantastic... i just got home from the v.v. in peterborough -- needless to say rural ontario owns the used clothing market. montreal has nothing in comparison.

7:57 PM  
Blogger Kathleen said...

Allie: The comic is about a middle aged woman who looks like scribble and suffers depression. She goes to the she the psychiatrists (psychologists?) who wrote the book How to be Awake and Alive and they recommend that anger is the cure for depression. She discovers anger is her super power and later fights crime, or uncriminal problems anyways with it, but first she gets dragged along to the ice-capades and wins filing clerk of the year, resulting in the death of the mayor.

Do you have any poetry that might fit with this?

6:26 PM  

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