Merry fuckin’ Xmas

So today has been fun.

SO I go to cash my monthly social assistance check and the teller tells me that my account is $290 overdue.

And so, when I cashed my cheque, my approximately $1,170 cheque turned into $830.

That means that, as it stands now, I have to get by on $330 for the next five weeks. Yup, you read that right. Five weeks, not four.

Because that’s how the govrenment rolls. Sometimes there is five weeks between checks instead of four. Always seems to coincide with a GST cheque month too,which basically means that the GST cheque is paid to the province, not me.

Can’t have us poor people developing unhealthy attitudes like hope. after all.

Because if our lives get better, middle class people feel less superior to us, and that’s just like stealing from them!

A little elementary math reveals that 330 divided by 5 is 66. meaning I would have to scrape by on $66/week this month instead of my usual $150/week.

How seasonal! It’s just like being Bob Cratchit!

Only he got paid better and had more financial security.

This financial upset was, to put it mildly, a shocker, and so I am currently looking into where the fuck all my money went.

Because let me make this clear : all my bills are hooked to my credit card,. not my bank account. I don’t keep much money in my bank account because I put it all on the card to pay my bills and that’s where the money for online purchases comes from too.

So there is no way this should have been possible.

But now I have looked into it and it turns out that this is where things get even more fun. Because it turns out that $125 of the missing money comes from…. can you guess, contestants at home?

That’s right, OVERDRAFT CHARGES!  That’s the fun game where the bank knows you have no money and chooses that moment to charge you for stuff so they can get their greedy paws on that sweet, sweet poor person money.

Vancity, I thought better of you.

This all comes from the fact that my VISA card expired in November. I was promptly issued a new one. As in, it arrived on the day the previous one expired. So I thought, well that was easy, and didn’t really think aboiut it any more.

So I didn’t realize that this meant I needed to go update all the places I had linked to my credit card. I mean, it was all the same numbers except for the expiry date. So I figured that meant it was no big deal.

Stupid, I know. But I am not exactly someone with an overabundance of clue. Despite my massive intellect. I am very inexperienced when it comes to dealing with the world, and I make the exact sorts of mistakes any young person might make when they are first making their way into the world.

It’s just happening to me at the age of 44.

So I’m a late bloomer. I’ve been sick.

So it’s really my fault for not having the perspicacity to immediately realize that I had to go to every site I deal with and update my credit card info or I would get nailed with a lot of charges I can ill afford.

It’s a dumb mistake. But I don’t feel that bad about it. It’s the sort of mistake any inexperienced person could make.

Especially someone who is far more clever than he is smart like myself.

Now, gentle reader, you need to know that this does not mean financial doom for me. I will continue to have the essentials of life – food, water, shelter, and internet access – even if I am unsuccesssful in getting any of these charges reversed or reduced.

If need be. I can tap into my savings, which as I have indicated I keep on the credit card, and while it would suck to have that money vanish, it would not ruin me.

I honestly didn’t know what to spend it on anyhow.

Vut as you can imagine, the whole experience has been somewhat of a shock, and I am feeling rather unsteady right now.

Glad I had a good session, at least. Today was therapy day for me, and it was quite productive, especially at the end, when  my therapist helped me realize that I have been projecting my mother’s fragility onto everyone else.

All my life, me and my siblings have been protecting my shy and sensitive mother from things that would upset her. Like me, she can project her emotions very strongly, so when she got upset, we got upset.

Well, that and she’s our mother. Protecting your mother is a basic human instinct, as is fearing what she fears, which makes a lot more sense when you are hunting and gathering on the verdant plains than it does when you are a modern ape living in the concrete jungle where there are remarkably few genuine dangers.

No wonder we’re all so neurotic.

Not wanting to upset Mom, plus her kindly but cerebral nature, meant that there was not a lot of open expression of intense emotion amongst us kids. We’re an intellectual bunch, and while that is great for the report card,. it’s not great for emotional stability.

Anyhow, I realized today that I internalized this “do not upset Mom” rule so deeply that I tend to assume, way back in my mind, that if I get mad at people, it’s like getting mad at my mother, which in my universe is an unthinkable thought.

There’s more to it than that, of course. There’s my fear of my own power, and my too-deep desire to not be an angry person who takes his frustrations out on people close to him. There’s also the big-guy effect where everything I do is amplified by my size.

But I think this thing with my mother is the key to my unlocking some of the doors that keep me all pent up inside.

Too bad it cost me $290 to find out. (Not really. )

I will talk to you nice people again tomorrow.



Part One : The Awakening

The thickly built human (male, according to Styment the Guide’s learned opinion) staggered out of the Chamber of Miracles,  looked around blearily, and eventually managed to focus both eyes on Stymentat the same time.

Time for the speech. “Greetings, O Great One, and welcome to the world of Adadrizel. You have been Chosen by the Great God Amazuzu to be the Champion of our Age. My name is Styment, and it is my duty, and my pleasure, to be your guide as you assume the mantle of the One Who Saves Us and lead us unto victory over the forces of Slamma the Vile! ”

“Uh huh. ” said the human, weaving unsteadily.

“You are no doubt disoriented from your journey from the Other Realm!” said Styment. “Please, sit, and collect thyself,. for the road ahead is long and it is a poor traveler indeed who grows weary when the roadside is soft!”.

“Yeah okay. ” said the human, who sat down heavily upon the cool stone bench, and rubbed his forehead in an attempt to clear his mind.

Eventually, he said “Dude…. are you some kind of…. ”

“Lizzard? ” said Styment. The Scrolls of Welcome had prepared him for question. “Yes, I am. I think I most closely resemble a beast from your realm known as a croc-o-dial?”

The human peered down at the sleek reptilian creature and said “I guess so, yeah, Or a caymin. Ours don’t wear clothes and read, though. :Last time I checked. ”

The Scrolls had mentioned this possibility, too. “I understand that, Great One. However, unlike your mindless beast, we Hyptillians are creatures of learning and understanding, much like you, and-”

“Wait!” said the human, suddenly fully awake and alert. “What did you just say? ”

Styment repressed the urge to cower at the enormous being”s loud, commanding voice. It was one thing to read about the towering might of the humans and quite another to experience it in person.

“I said that we Hyptillians are-” began Styment.

“That’s what I thought you said!” said the human in a voice so strong it made Styment want to wedge himself into a crack in the rocks. “Amd what did you call yourself?”

“My name, ” said Syment somewhat primly, “is Styment the Guide, and if you-”

“You mean, you’re Styment the Sixteenth…. no. Seventeenth of the Order for Guides, the third born child of House Tzo’s third clutch, and the current occupant of the House of Green Glory in Aspenvale?”

“Um…. yes?” said Styment. The Scrolls had said the hero would be “possessed of strange knowings”  but he’d always assumed those knowings would be otherwordly.

“And you’re here to help the Hero of the Age… who is me… tap into the Deep Magics and unleash the hidden powers that are my birthright?” said the human.

“Er, yes. ” said Styment. Now it was if the human was reading off the Scrolls himself.

“And I am really standing in front of the Chamber of Miracles, just outside Aspenvale, in the duchy of Duower. in the fief of Tolard the Red, which is part of the Prvince of Alran which is part of the great Tovian Empire?”

“Yes… sir. ” said Styment. He’d never been so scarewd and confused in his life. This was not at all how the Scrolls said it would be. ”

“And I am really the Champion of the Age, Hero of the Forest Peoples, and Wielder of the Great Sword Slizen?” said the human.

“Yes!” said a trembling Styment.

The human leapt to his feet, raised his fist to the sky, and at the top of his lung, shouted “ALL FUCKING RIGHT! ”


Styment silmultaneously wet himself and passed out.


“Dude, I am really, really sorry. ” said the human as he crouched over a prone Styment and fanned him with a leaf.

“It is…. me…. who should apologize, my Hero… ” hissed Styment weakly. “I should have… I mean, the Scrolls said to be ready for… ”

“Nah dude. It’s all my fault. Everyone knows Hyptillians are super sensitive to sound, and kind of… um, high strung. ”  said the human.

“Stilll, I should not have… succumbed to the… the… ” said Styment.

“Shh. ” said the human. “Don’t talk. Just relax and sip your Tormac Tea amd relax. ”

Styment dutifully took another sip of the thick orange liquid in his cup. The tea really was exactly what he needed right now, and the human had brewed it perfectly. It was rich and delicious and he could feel his fluids replenishing.

Here he was, the one who dared call himself Styment, the occupier of one of the Forest Peoples’ most prestigious roles, whose wisdom was called upon by the leaders of all of the Peoples’ leqaders and who was so beloved and respected that a single word from him could topple nations, and where had all that led?

To him laying helplessly on his back on a broad flat rock with the very Hero he was supposed to be Guiding tending ot him like he was fresh from the egg.

It was the most degrading, humiliating, and emasculating failures in the entire history of the Peoples of the Forest.

So why did it make Styment so… happy?

Stment sghed into his tea. Nature writhes, as the old saying went, and just when you think you have glimpsed its belly, it rolls over and flicks its tail.

“Well…. look, I am going to check out the area. ” said the human. “Are you going to be okay on your own for a while?

Styment nodded weakly. A strange warmth was flooding his senses, and it seemed to want him to do something.

“Great! I won’t be long. ” said the human. ” I just want to see if the maps in the back of the books are accurate. ”

Some vestige of his trainign stirred in Styment., and he summoned all of his remaining energies to say “By…. by what name shall we know you, Great One?”

“My name? ” said the human. “Oh, I’m Steve. Steve Abracian. ”

But there was nobody there to hear it, because Styment was already asleep.


I’m not sick, but I’m not well

Actually, I am sick, but I couldn’t think of a song that said that.

At least I feel better than I did yesterday. That’s not saying a lot,. but it’s something, anyway. I still feel panicky and toxic and stupid and worthless and wrong.

But, ya know. Less so.

This too shall pass. Hopefully soon, but whatever. I have that feeling that something toxic is making its way through me that I get from time to time. And based on that, I know how I feel now will pass quite literally.

As in, out of my body.

Via my poop chute.

In the form of poop.

And now you know.

So I will feel better eventually.

Driving myself crazy over trying to figure out what I want for Xmas. And I know that’s the wrong approach. I should be doing the opposite, namely relaxing about the whole thing and lettign ideas come to me.

That might not work, though, because fundamentally, I don’t have the slightest idea what I want, period.

Of course, if this was Boxing Day, I would suddenly have a zillion ideas that are TOTALLY obvious and perfect and I can’t believe I didn’t think of them when I had the opportunity because they are things I have been longing for ALL YEAR.

But that’s just how things go around here.

It’s the same sort of metnal logjam that I imagine happens to those people who study hard for the exam only to have it all disappear from their mind like water down the drain when the exam is in front of them.

I’ve never had that problem. I test well. I sympathize though. That must be hell.

And it happens to me, as I have mentioned, just not with exams. It happens with anything with a high option paralysis potential, like deciding what I want for Xmas or my birthday or even jjust to buy for myself.

And it’s easy to say it’s all about the Hall of Inifinite Doors, where there are simply too many options for me to process either rationally or intuitively and so my mind just freezes up like a world-running computer that just lost a logic fight to Captain Kirk.

And that is definitely a large part of it. But there’s a lot more to it than that.

For one thing, there’s the stakes. Which are largely imaginary. The situatio would nbot be nearly as stressful if I did not feel so much pressure to get it “right”.

It’s that drive to be “smart” and have the “right” answer at work again. And it’s backed up by experience. I know that if I choose A and then, once it’s too late, realized that B was obviously way, way better. I will feel like an idiot and beat myuself up for being so stupid when if I had just thought about it for two seconds…

But I couldn’t think about it. Because my mind was all frozen up on the subject.

So I should forgive myself and move on, right?

My mind knows no such mercy

In fact, I feel like my recent resurgance in self-loathing is at least partially a result of having successfully held my demons back for a long time without actually attacking the root of the problem, and that meant it just kept building up behind the barriers in my mind until the dam broke and I got drowned in a huge flood of it.

So clearly that doesn’t work too well.

Blocking the emotion is not enough, and is bound to fail in the long run. The only way to solve the root problem is to roll up my pant legs and wade into the quigmire of my subconscious mind and try to figure out where this all comes from.

I’m tempted to be flippant and say “bad brain chemicals. duh. ” And it does feel like that some of the time. Like I end up feeling how I feel because it’s the only way to feel given my brain chemistry issues, and everything I do to explain the pain is really just a rationalization to cover that harsh truth,

But it is, of course, a lot more complicated than that.

Because those bad chemicals come from somewhere. They come from the psychological traumae of my early  childhood that my young brain simply could not handle or heal and so they became a part of the very foundation of my mind.

That means fixing them is going to be quite tricky. It’s like trying to repair a load-bearing wall. It’s vitally important that it be done, or the whole house will fall down. But anything you do to fix it might also bring down the house. so to speak.

So how do you fix those bad, crumbling bricks?

Very, very carefully.

I feel like I am at that point of insanity right now. The point where I can see how crazy my thoughts are and how far from reality I have drifted, and yet, the craziness remains.

And I can see it very clearly. It’s quite ugly. Like something you would find in the garbage behind a cut-rate forensics lab.

There’s never an auto-cleaning autoclave around when you need one.

This is the point where I can truly feel my insanity. IT is therefore also the point at which I feel truly insane. When the madness has me in its grips and I feel like it is all true, I don’t have this problem.

And when I am healthy, I don’t even think my mental illness. It all seems so remote that it is easy to imagine that it was all a nightmare and now I am awake and it will never ever happen again.

But of course, it will.

So it’s only in these between times when I can feel how crazy I am and it’s hard not to let that get to me.

Maybe that’s why psychotics go off their meds so often.

They often blame the side effects of their meds.

But the truth ius that life is easier when you are too crazy to know how crazy you are.

Reality is so hard.

Sometimes I wish I never had to come back to it.

I will talk to you nice people again tomorrow.



The bottom of the valley

I am pretty depressed right now.

It’s that infinite retreat thing. No matter which way I turn, there is something I don’t want to face. Myh overactiver superego is running amok and I hate myself a lot right now. I feel hopeless and helpless and vulnerable and violated and very, very depressed.

But I will survive.

I will keep on trudging through life ands bury myself in my distractions and eventually I will feel better and start really enjoying my distractions (yay?) and life will, for a while at least, seem reasonably okay,

But eventually I will end up back here. I accept that.

You can either see it as a trip from peak to peak or from valley to valley It all depends on what you decide is real. If you choose to think the valleys are “real” or at least your highest priotrity, then you end up concluding that none of it is worth it because you always end up back in Hell again,.

Yeah, Fuck that. I might be in Hell right now but I know it’s just a daypass trip and soon this craxzy tourbus will turn around and head back towards Heaven.

Well, maybe not absolute Heaven. But relative Heaven. Compared to Hell, it will be Heaven, and that’s about all I can reasonably help.

I really feel like I can;t do anything to imnprove my life. I try to imagine my way to looking for work on UoWork or calling mky docor’s office and making an appointment or really anything that might make me feel better,

All I can do is skip the goddamned toxic desserts for a while and hope to dry out and go back to something like a decent blood sugar level, and hope that that will be enough to get me on the mending path.

I have lost some of the sensation in the tips of my fingers and my toes. I get weird sensations all over my body, like tingling or burning or stabbing, at random moments and sometimes I itch for no reason. Yay diabetic neuropathy. Turning out turning your blood into sludge by eating sugary things is kind of hard on the body, especially the nerves and the arteries.

What the fuck am I doing with my life.

I try to find the strength to face my problems, but I feel so weak. Like my soul in pneumatic and my compressor shut down. I can’t seem to make myself do it.

And maybe that is part of the problem. I have been forcing myself to do things by sheer force of will and that is a resource that was never meant for long term use.

There is so much chaos ibn my head. Sometimes I wonder how I get anything done with the all-singing, all-dancing monkey shit-fight orgy screamig in my head and raging like a tornado in my head all the time.

And in the center of it all is my tiny little world, filthy and depressing and stupid and messy and loathsome and lovely asnd warm and wonderful and dead as hell.

But safe. Very very safe. From outside threats, at least.

My inner demons don’t like the competition.


The usual nap happened.

I feel so toxic. Like I want to vomit from every pore on my body all at once. Kasploot. It would be horrifying beyond measure but I would feel so much better afterwards.

I am going to have to concentrate on getting myself healthy. Or at least, back to the base level of illness which I used to enjoy back when I took meds and shot insulin and did all the other things that depression has taken from me of late.

It doesn’t feel possible right now, and the urge to shove it to the back of my mind and just continue on as I am right now is powerful.

And I know I don’t have to do it. I can continue to withdraw from it all and let my health get worse and worse until I end up in the hospital.

And the saddestg thing is that, to the sick part of my mind, that sounds really good. You mean I never have to pull my head out of my ass and eventually I end up someplace where people will take care of me and all my friends will feel bad for me and be super nice to me and I get to be the center of attention?

Sign me the fuck up.

TO me, Munchausen Syndrome has never been the slightest bit of a mystery. To a weak soul like myself, dodging reality by becoming a professional patient sounds marvelous. The world is a harsh and cruel place where you are alone and abandoned in a world with which you cannot cope.

Being in the hospital means you do not have to cope. And for those of us with a vast, unmet need for nurturing, it’s a place that comes with professionals who will tqake care of you and protect you.

They may not do it with a lot of warmth. But you take what you can get.

This is why I am so scared of ever ending up in the psych ward. I would never want to leave. It woukld be too comfortable and safe for me.

I wouldn’t even have to generate my own structure any more. I would only have to go where I am supposed to go and do what I am supposed to do.

And for me, manufacturing the symptoms of serious mental illness (as opposed to boring old depression) would be child’s play. I know a lot about abnormal psychology (in the same way that a fish knows a lot about swimming) and I can be a very good acor when I decidde to be.

Because the sad truth is that merely saying you hate yourself and hate your life and everything in it and it makes you want to die will not get you into the psych ward.

Not unless you say you are suicidal, and even then, probably not.

You’re stuck coping with feeling like dying unless you actually do something about it and make an attempt.

And that might work.

You just might die.

I will talk to you nice people again tomorrow.


The infinite retreat

OMG, I had a good diea for what I was going to write about, time passed, and then I actually remembered it when it came time to blog!

This is a banner day. I shall have to mark it on my Advent calendar.

I saw an ad once for “virtual Advent calendars”. My first thought was “then how do you get the chocolate”.

Anyhow, what I am going to talk about tonight is aversion, and how a little of it can be a good thing but, like everything else, too much of it is toxic.

Being a person with depression/anxiety, my life is ruled by my aversions. In face, I have so many aversions that they can gang up and make me afraid of absolutely everything. Afraid of reality, reall. Afraid of being awake.

Afraid of being alive.

The way it works is simple. I will provide a visualization.

Imagine that you are walking through one of Canada’s mighty fine national parks when you come across a bear.

Being sentient enough to know when you are in deep shit, you start slowly backing away from the bear, who hasn’t noticed you yet.

But then you hear a noise and turn, and whaddaya know, there’s a big mama mountain lion with her cubs, and you almost backed into her.

In fact, your path away from the bear would have put you between her and her very adorable and vulnerable looking cubs.

Heart pounding, you add the vectors in your head like any primate would and start backing away in a third direction.

Except that now, that direction is blocked by a forest fire.

So what can you do? There is now no way to go that does not bring you closer to mortal danger. No matterwahich way you got, something is going to get you.

So what do you do?

You stay exactly where you are. You are now in a life or death version of Burridan’s Ass, and the only possible answer is to maintain current danger levels by sitting still.

Multiply that a thousand times over and you get how the rapid aversion-forming nature of dpression/anxoiety leads to a complete inability to act.

That is how I have been feeling lately. Like I am backing away from a million things at once and there is nowhere to turn and I can’t handle anything so I just bury myself in my distractions even further and ignore everything else.

In the bear/couger/fire  example above, this is the equivalent of resolving the situation by sitting down and playing games on your phone.

Sure, the danger will probably kill you, but at least you’re not scared any more. Or rather, the fear is safely compartmentalized and shunted to the background of your consciousness so that it stops making you anxious.

Imagine a mysterious crate labeled “Reality” being wheeled into the government warehouse from the end of the first Indiana Jones movie, and you get the idea.

That’s how I have lived the last 20 years of my life. Surrounded by dangers, mostly imaginary, and dealing with them by ignoring them in favour of a constant state of dreaming my life away.

Meanwhile, my life is burning down to the ground and every day brings me closer to the day when one of my very real demons, like my depression and my diabetes, actually gettting me and killing me, and that’s a very scary and anxiety-producing thought, so I bury myself even further to get away from it.

It’s like a medicine that treats the symptoms of your illness perfectly while doing absolutely nothing to stop its progression.

Technically, you should be taking this opportunity to really tackle your illness and kick its ass so you don’t even have to take the medication any more.

But the reality is that without the pain, you have no motivation to expend really any effort at all on treating the actual disease. After all, why would you?

Just to stop taking the medication? Why, from some overwhelming sense of machismo that says being dependent on any substance is a weakness and weakness is not to be tolerated? Some desire to save the government a little money? To satisfy some abstract sense of how things should be?

To save your own life?

That should be a pretty good reason, right? Not dying?

And it totally is and you will totally get right on that.

Tomorrow. Or the next day. Next weekend for sure.

And nothing gets done because you have those magic meds that make all the pain go away. You hav3e the forbidden knowledge that there is a cure for emotions, and therefore no matter how bad your situation gets, you can escape it without having to deal with it.

And that’s way easier. than actually facing your problems, which are scary and depressing and hard and have no quick and easy solution, and which get worse every day due to your neglect of them.

This, in turn, makes you even less likely to deal with your problems because now they are even scarier and more depressing and way way harder.

And so forth and so on, until you die of things that you could “easily” have stopped at any point if you had just stopped hiding and taking arms against your sea of troubles and by opposing, ended them.

That’s my problem, right there. Right now my diabetes is 100 percent untreated. No meds, no insulin, and I eat crap I should not eat all the frigging time.

And I feel like I have no control over it, even though from an outside point of view I am the one with all the power.

There’s nothing forcing me to eat broiwnies. Right?

And yet there I go. My reality gets worse and worse and I just play Skyrim and act like nothing is wrong while Rome burns.

It’s a horrible situation and I know exactly how to fix it.

Play some more Skyrim.

And leave saving myself from myself to some other day.

I will talk to you nice people again tomorrow.






Just your everyday brush with death.

So, I just saved myself from my own mistake, which potentially could have killed me.

And it’s the same mistake I have made over and over, and every time I wonder what the hell is wrong with me that this sort of thing happens three or four times a year instead of, ya know, never.

What was my mistake?

I skipped a meal.

And you know what that means. I had a blood sugar crash. One of those lovely experiences where I feel cold all over, as if blood sugar was fuel oil and I forgot to pay the bill. It’s like the chill hand of death was feeling me up.

So, ya know, almost died. Godo thing the pizza guy showed up. I had ordered my food before I realized how bad it had gotten and, because my brain was not working very well at the time, decicded I would just wait for it to show up instead of getting up and going to the kitchen to snack on something so I wouldn’t die.

My not eating between meals like ever might end up killing me one day.

But then again, so might a lot of things.

Happy ending, food arrived, I ate, I feel a whole lot better now. But for some reason, I am now very sleepy. It is taking effort just to type these simple words.

So tonight I will go “halfsies”. 500 words, nap, other 500 words.

Consider what I have been through, I feel it’s entirely justified. A different sort of person might give themselves the day off, so to speak, but I know myself too well and I know that it has to be every single day or I will stop.

And I can’t stop. I’ve been writing 1000 words a day for six years now. It’s the only thing that gives my day any kind of shape or purpose at all. Even when I am seriously falling apart inside, I always have writing to you nice people to look forward to and to give me something to focus on and towards. It lets me releases some of the word pressure in my head and gives me a chance to feel like I accomplished something, at least, instead of letting the days go by without a trace as I drown myself in distractions

Anyhow, back to how unfit I am to look after myself.

I know, you’ve heard it all bnefore from me, over and over. About how I clearly am not fit to look after myself considering the lousy job I am doing of it.

And it’s getting worse. I haven’t been to see my GP in six months and my diabetes meds have officially run out. I am flyinj’ unmedicated now, whee.

That moight kill me, toio.

I don’t even take my nightly insulin any more. Somehow that habit just fell away as I let Skyrim hollow me out and take me apart.

And I feel so lost. I try to hold on to the good things but they slip through my ice-numbed fingers. I let go of what I should retain and cling to things I should abandon.

It’s exactly like I have no idea what I am doing.

Nap time! will BBIAB.


The war within.  I have been trying very hard to improve my thinking.

You know, getting rid of the negative thoughts that lead to negative feelings and reinforce negative attitudes and so forth and so on. Classic cognitive therapy.

And to do this, I have tapped into all that rage I have buried deep within me and turned it towards the depression it partially causes.

Seemed like a good idea at the time. And don’t get me wrong, it’s done me a lot of good. I fucking hate my depression and that makes it much easier to fight it. And fight it with the sort of kamakazi abandon that made my ancestors berserkers.

But lately I haveen wondering if I might have gotten it wrong somewhere. Turning my rage against my depression is more or less declaring war on myself and I am beginning to wonder if maybe it is time I tried a different approach.

Because I can’t live with this tension any more. And really, it’s just a new face on the same old overactive superego. I am still brutally prosecuting myself, in a sense, and there has to be a better solution than that.

Something in the opposite direction, perhaps,. Total acceptance of all I contain, ihncluding the unhealthy part of me. End the war within and work towards a lasting peace. An end to the division between healthy me and the depression that I happen to have had for a long time, but which isn’t me.

Sounds wrong, doesn’t it? Why, that would be giving in to depression,. Surely that could only make this worse. Like, as bad as they can be.

It would mean surrendering to the enemy!  Evil wins! Good loses! GAME OVER!

But I am not so binary of thinking. I can accept the idea that the war might be the problem. That the inner conflict is costing me more than it is worth.

Maybe it is time that all the voices in my head sat down at the same table, aired their grievances without judgment or persecution, and tried to finally the solve the problem of who I would be if I listened to all of them.

Because that’s the thing. Right now, I put on difrferent masks to express different parts of myself. But there is no mask for me as a whole.

And who am I when I have no mask at all? I have no idea. I look behind the mask and all I see is darkness, which is a different kind of mask entirely.

Clearly, I am afraid of what I would see if I really looked. Scared it would cause my self-loathing to explode and kill me. Scared that once I see it, I woukd be stuck in that form forever and lose my shapeshifting abilities entirely.

And that would be bad…. wouldn’t it?

I will talk to you nice people again tomorrow.


And they’re off!

As the urologist said when he broke the vasectomy speed record.

Read that, then the subject line, if it doesn’t make sense to you.

So,. How the hell are ya? Me, I’m doing okay,. Had therapy, got my meds refilled. Hung out with Felicity, Garth, and Amos.

So, a typical Thursday.

Therapy went okay. My therapist was ten minutes late starting the appointment and I let him know how frustrated that made me.

So my next appoibntment will be at 12:45 pm instead of 1 pm. Must rememeber to tell Joe that, preferably soon so he has time to get used to the idea.

We Taurus types need adjustment periods.

The other day, I was thinking about my tendency to reach a poinjt where I want to start over fresh instead of dealing with how complicated things have gotten or in general how I am not enjoying something any more.

And the analogy that popped into my metaphor filled head was that it was easier to start a new house of cards than to change a card in the existing one to correct a mistake, especially a mistake you made way earlier in the process.

For all you know, that could be a load bearing card.

And that’s how it is with my mind a lot of the time. It’s why I can’t handle sudden changes in plan a lot of the time. To my. my expectations of how the day was going to go are that house of cards and sudden changes yank a bunch of cards out and I am left desperately trying to fix the damage and keep things from collapsing.

That’s why I react like someone just punched me in the gut and my first instinct will be to say no.

What I really want to say in that momen is “fuck no, fuck off, go away and leave me alone, everything was fine until you showed up. ”

But that would be extremely wrong on many levels. For one thing, most people do not react like that. Most people handle sudden change better. So to get upset about it is to expect people to somehow know that what works for others doesn’t work for you.

And that is fundamentally unfair.

Even if the change is positive – turning a boring day into one where I will be doing something super fun that I will totally enjoy, say – there will still be a period of disorientation and dislocation and part of me will still want to go back to the appeallingly safe seeming time before the change came along and “ruined everything”.

Even when I am enjoying myself, part of me is still counting down the hours and minutes before I can crawl back into my cave again and hide from the world. isolated and alone and safe.

Which is, of course, the very condition I lament, loathe, and long to leave. I am more than willing to rail against the bars of my cage.

But only from inside the cage.

When I am out, I can’t wait to get back in.

Just today, I realized that despite my never having taken disappointment well, if a friend canceled plans to meet, a shameful part of me would be giddy from the relief.

And that really does fill me with shame. I feel like I am being disloyal to the person on a deep and terrible level, like I violated the connection between us, even though all I did was feel an emotion.

And emotions are never wrong. Only actions can be wrong.

And yet, I would be ashamed. Neurosis.

I have been thinking about my tendency to cling to where I am like a barnacle lately, so that each transition, no matter how small, leaves me with tendrils reaching back longingly towards the suddenly sacred socket I just left.

It’s quite unhealthy. I would be far better off if I just accepted change and thus was able to confidently put one thing down and pick up another, safe in the knowledge that whatever it was will be there for me when I have time for it again.

Instead, I have a life full of bruising dislocations, never all in one place, nevr fully in the moment, with parts of me left behind in everything I have done and the wounded animal in me just wanting to go back into hiding from everything forever.

I am serious. Everything. Forever. Infinite fear stretching to every horizon. That is what my anxiety feels like sometimes. Like the only real relief would be to stop existing.

Would if I could.

After all, that’s the message I got all through my childhood. Pretend you don’t exist. Be quiet and fade into the background. You are not and never will be welcome. You will always be an intruder to us. So don’t remind us that you are here. Be as small as possible. And don’t ever ask for anything because you deserve nothing.  Absolutely nothing. Not time, not energy, not money, not space. You don’t even deserve to be alive. The sum total of our love for you is expressed by us letting you stay,

But make no mistake. We do not want you here. Everything was better before you showed up. You don’t belong.

No wonder I learned to retreat into my own little world of media consumption. After all, like Robin Williams said, “I used to think the worst thing of all was to be alone. But it’s not. It’s to be with people who make you feel alone.”

I’d argued that it’s even worse to be with people who make you feel worse than alone, they make you feel alone and unqworthy and unwelcomne and useless and worthless.

I’ve carried that feeling of utter incompetence and total worthlessness with me for a long time. It’s buried deep in my code because it was installed when I was very young.

And it’s got to go. I am a good person. I have a lot of talent and intellect and personal awesomeness and I am a really sweet guy.

I have nothing to be ashamed of. (Repeat one million times. )

Somehow, I have to get to that place where I feel like I am okay.

It’s a long steep climb.

But I will NEVER stop trying.

I will talk to you nice people again tomorrow.


Push back, conservatives!

Forgive me if I am repeating myself, but…

Only conservatives can save the world.

Forget whose fault it is that the world is so messed up or which side “wins” or what some politician says you “srand for”.

Think instead about what  you truly believe in and how different that is from what the media thinks you believe.

Think about how you have been lied to and misled by the politiciqans you put in power and how none of them – none  – have done what they said they were going to do and treated you like a sucker instead.

Think about all of these coastal ilites who act like conservatives don’t even have any morals and are just mindless sheep following their big orange shepherd.

Think about how all that makes you feel. Then stand up for yourselves and push back as hard as you can.

I am not asking tyou to become a liberal. I am not asking you to abandon everything you have ever believed in. I am not even asking you to switch parties. \

All I am asking you to do is to push back against these smiling lying sons of bitches who think standing in front of a tractor with a cowboy hat on makes them an average citizen just like you.

The hell it does. Those bastards are not what you voted for. The guy or gal you voted for never showed up for work. Instead, you got some lunatic who knows about as much about doing their job as a squirrel knows about heart surgery and who could not wait to sell you out to big government and big corporations so they could get rich while you and yours get by on less and less every day.

And then these jackasses think they have the right to say what you believe? To act like you’re okay with everything they do to you and the country just because you voted for them? To drag your name through the mud and bring shame to you and your family just because you voted for that fake version of themselves they pretended to be?

Aren’t you sick and tired of it? Aren’t you mad? Doesn’t it make you want to do something about it?

Well you can. You can push back.

I am not saying it will be easy. Like all decent folks, you value loyalty and dedication and love your country without reservation.

But the goddamned politicians don’t.  They aren’t loyal to anyone but their own greed, their own dedicated to their own pride, and they are perfectly willing to treat the flag like toilet paper if it makes them a little richer, or even just for the hell of it.

So why should you be any more loyal to them than they are to you?

Push back. You’re the only ones who can do it.

I mean, the nerve of these bozos, acting like they could say Christ was Satan and Satan was Christ and you would believe them.

These people don’t represent you, your people, or your faith. They are Pharisees and their only god is Mammon.

And that’s not good enough, because, goddamit, there’s such a thing as standards, and standards only exist when they are enforced, and right now, nobody is enforcing them.

And that’s really all I am talking about here. I am not asking you to change anything you believe in, not even a little.

I am just asking you to enforce them. Hold your politicians to a higher standard and if they fail it, let them know, right away and in no uncertain terms, that this is not acceptable and if they keep it up, there will be consequences.

That’s what I mean when I say I want you to push back.

And yes, this means you might have to break from the pack and go maverick for a while. Your friends and family might act like you are some kind of traitor just for expecting politicians to do what they said they would do and for demanding the right to speak for yourself instead of letting some Washington jackass speak for you.

You’re going to have to tough it out. And I know you can do it. You’re not the type to give up when the going gets tough. You’re a person of principles and backbone who isn’t afraid to ride into battle in order to stand up foir what believe and save your country from people who betray it in your name.

These people don’t represent you. These people don’t believe what you believe. These people have no right to claim they speak for you and they especially do not have the right to claim to sp4eak for your faith when, with the way they act,. it’s a wonder they don’t burst into flames when they go to church.

If they even go.

And I guarantee that if you start standingup for what you believe – what you truly believe – you will go from villains to heroes in no time flat. You will be the people who brought down the biggest monsters of our age and all you have to do is fight for what you believe and refuse to let anyone tell you what that is.

Not even big shot Holloywood TV stars who live in mansions and make millions by selling books and telling everyone what they say people you you think.

Push back. Let them – all of them – know that they don’t speak for you. They lost that right when they turned against you and started doing every single thing they told you they were against. They lost that right when they stood in front of the flag knowing that they planned to betray it. They lost that right when they dare to claim to be Christian and then went against every single word Christ ever said – and then claimed that you had the exact same attitude.

Tell them that they are wrong. Punish them for acting like they think you have no mind of your own and they can forcfe their garbage down your throat and you’ll swallow it all up and ask for more. Make them feel your anger and disappointment at how they have failed and betrayed you.

Make them pay for what they have done.

Push back., my conservative friends.

And you just might save the world.





Be careful what you wish for

Befoire I get into the serious stuff, he’s a taste of Xmas fuzzy style.

Yrs, I know, the dragon isn't fuzzy, he's scaly. And aren't you proud of yourself for pointing that out and accomplishing......?

Give something fuzzy a hug today.

Now let’s talk politics.

(Audience groan and rolls their eyes)

Before today, I had tho0ught that I would like nothing more than to have something I said spark off a lively discussion amongst those who read me.

Well I got that today and I hate it.

And I should have seen this coming, because on Facebook, the people involved aren’t just “people”, they are “friends and loved ones”, and for my entire life, I have hated it when people I cared about fought.

To me, it’s torture. Absolute torture. The pain involved is hard to describe.

Thesource of the tension is not, however. The tension comes from having my adrenalin pumping due to the angry atmosphere but being unable to give it vent because you love and care about both these people and they are both the aggessor and the victim.

When I was a yoiunger and more hotheaded person, I vented the anger at the conflict itself, and turned two angry people yelling at each other into one angry person yelling at two highly bewildered people.

Not really an improvement. But I was in a lot of pain.

The worst was if two friends asked me to choose between them. I will not do that, I cannot do that. They were basically asking me to tear my soul in half and then pick a half, and I absolutely flatly refuse to do that.

That hasn’t changed. That is still my position

But note that the abovementioned case, there is no moral context. It’s a pure hypothetical and presumes that this is a straivght up “who do you like more?” kind of scenario. I have encountered said situation. And I fucking hated it.

If there is more than that going on, I will definitely choose the side I think is right. That won’t (hopefully) determine who I am friends with in the future and who I am not,  but it does mean that I will render judgment if that proves necessary.

That’s a last resort, though. First I will attempt to mediate. A lot of interpersonal conflict boils down to either two people not meaning the same thing when they use certain words or someone being blind to the emotional consequence of their actions on others.

It’s a skill I picked up both from a “yelling at the dinner table” filled childhood and the lessons I learned from the greatest fictional judge ever. Judge Harold T. Stone.

Seriously. That cute, that handsome, AND wise? *pounce*

God DAMN he was sexy back then. I was just too young to notice at the time.

He taught me that conflict resolution is not about choosing side, it’s about resolving differences between people. With the right mediation, a nasty horrible angry situation can be turned into a happy, peaceful situation in which not only is the conflict resolved, but everyone leaves feeling a little more human, and closer to their fellow humans.

And as far as I am concerned, that is a miracle. Fuck turning lead into gold… turning anger into love is the real Philosopher’s Stone.

And I have pulled it off. And it felt even better than I thought it would. I was floating on a cloud of magnificent karma bliss for hours after that.

They should send me to the Middle East. Seriously. I could get shit done.

It doesn’t always work, though. The times it does are rare and wonderful. But sometimes, it’s not a misunderstanding, it’s abuse, and abusers abuse because that’s how they deal with their emotions and hence are addicted to abusing, and are perfectly capable of creating whatever rationalization they need in order to justify it because that is how addictions work.

Addictions hollow people out by displacing all other mpotivations and making everything in the addict’s life about them, and at a universally overriding priority.

In other (less fancy) words, nothing is more important than the next fix. Not your job, not your friends, not your spouse, not your kids, not your religion, not your morals, and most definitely not your physical wellbeing.

Back one bracket. The abuser needs to abuse, but is also aware that aggression towards the innocent is more or less the human definition of “bad”.

I mean, imagine someone walking up to a total stranger and punching them in the nose. Just because they felt like it.

That’s almost incomprehensively wrong.

Now imagine that instead of a perfect stranger, that was one of the people they loved most in the world.

That’s what abuse is, in the real world.

Now imagine that instead of a sock toi the nose, you substitute a verbal tirade aimed directly at the loved one and being both terrifyingly angry and extremely violent, meant to inflict maximum pain.

That’s what living with a verbakl abuser is like.

Like my Dad.

Two or more brackets back : so no, I am not happy that my friends are arguing politics in one of my Facebook threads.

The fact that several of them are conservatives only worsens things. I live in a media bubble where I never have to be directly exposed to the anti-civilization madness that calls itself conservatism these days.

And they do the exact same thing. Why do we do it? Because we can. Because the internet makes it so easy. Because given the choice, people choose not to be exposed to things that will make them feel bad.

In my case, the frothing trolls of modern conservatism don’t make me angry any more. Just depressed. I am too aware of the forces at play to get truly angry at these people. They, too, are just trying to get through life and make sense of the world.

Andmaybe they are honestly doing the best they can.

But all it takes is one bit of the modern malady of madness to send my mood spiraling downward, like a deflating balloon.

And I have a choice. I could unfriend the conservatives. or block their comments, or just tell them to fuck right off.

But no. I won’t do that. My stubborn intellectual pride won’t let me. That, to me, would be tantamount to surrender. It would mean tacitly admitting I can’t handle what they are saying, and I could never do that.

I am far too stubborn, prideful, and pugilistic for that.

So I know that, eventually, I will have to wade into the debate, say my piece, make some peace if I think things are getting too heated or personal,, and let myself be drawn into the malestorm instead of remaining remote like usual.

And that…. sucks.

I will talk to you nice people again tomorrow.



A slow loss of innocence

I have been losing my virginity for a long time.

Not in the sexual sense, obviously. Depending on your definition, I am either a total virgin (by the old Jewish “sex is a penis enterting a vagina” definition), a slightly experienced gay man (had sex with dudes not not enough to get anyh good at it), or a total pervert who will roast in the hottest fires of hell (if you go by the “impure thoughts”sinning in your heart”  definition).

No, the form of innocence of which I speak is the innocence of remaining unaware of and not interested in the general pattern of your life and where you want it to go.

Now let me make this clear. I lost more than a decade to this kind of innocence. I just innocently made it through every day with my usual media mix and actively avoided thinking about the future because  the subject made me very depressed.

When I tried to think about my future, all I could picture was a vast stretch of dark-grey static stretching forward in time. An endless nullity in which no meaning or satisfaction or even contentedness could exist.

I have a lot of void imagery in my head.

So all I could do was make it through the day every day. And for a while, I told myself that this was enough for me.

Just day after day of trying to get through the hours with as little pain as I could manage. From that point of view, anything that made the time pass subjectively faster was good. I needed some way of filling my time.

And my usual cocktail of boomks, video games, and hanging out online fit the bill. Still does. None of them require me to leave my apartment and face the world and all its traumatic stimuli and anxiety.

No, it all takes place in my unhealthty little home here. That means I am fully in control of the situation and stmulation levels do not change unexpectedly.

It’s not good. It is, in fact, killing me. But it’s the only way to cope that I know.

The loss of innocence began when I first got healthy enough, due to therapy and the miracle of modern pharmacology, to be able to look at my future and actually see something. And what I saw was not pretty.

I saw myself living the exact same way until the day I die at age 50 or so. Never becoming part of life, never getting a boyfriend or a job, never really growing up. Just an early grave with the epitaph reading “He read some books and played some video games and talked to some people online”.

That was, and is, unacceptable.

Once I got to that point, the process unfolded unbidden. I would return to this new discontent ovr and over, and for a long time, I felt like there was nothing I could do to fix the situation. My fear simply would not let me out of my box so I could go and play with all the other toys.

Story idea there. Hmmm.

But eventually I had shifted enough of my burden in order to imagine doing something with my life, and that’s when I got the marvelously mad idea of writing one million words in a year.

I did the math. It would mean writing 2,739 words a day, roughly speaking, and I felt like that was something I could do.

To this day, the sheer madcap lunacy of the idea continues to amuse the hell out of me. It’s not the sort of thing a sane person would do : go from writing nothing to writing 2700 words a day.

And it was the sheer lunacy of the idea that made me fall in love with the notion and therefore feel driven to do it.

There’s a lesson in there someone. Maybe what I need to get myself out of my current rut is another lunatic idea that I fall madly in love with.

Yes, I just need a new crazy project for the new year. But it has to be something entirely fresh and new. I would rather die than repeat myself. Once I am done with it, I am done with it, and going back to it feels like putting on dirty underwear.

Ick. No thanx.

Os it would have to be fresh and new and crazy and have lots of potential for engagement on many levels.

Maybe I will make the world’s weirdest news website. Or something like that.

Anyhow, after the million words, I settled into my “one thousand words a day” routine, which after 2700 woirds a day felt like nothing.

And that was enough for a while. It was very good for me to have an outlet for all the words in my head. Word pressure is my biggest source of interior tension.

And I could work things out by writing about them. Kind of like I am doing right now. It turns out that sometimes, the only way for me to find out what I really think is to release the words from my head until the truth pops up.

As with archeology, the secret is to dig down.

Damn I love that song.

This slowl excavation eventually led me to Kwantlen, which led to VFS, which led to this moment in time.

Right now, I feel like it was a clever conspiracy of all my bad voices that convinced me to quit the Uno job without securing something else first.

They knew that all they had to do was inflate my ego so I would quit then keep me distracted by convincing me that I would get around to digging for work on UpWork eventually, and kablam, all my momentum would die and they would have me all to themselves once more.

And I have been in that state for months. Went right back to the media cocktail, made much stronger by my addiction to Skyrim, which can keep me occupied for however much time I give to it.

On good days, it even makes me happy.

Bjut even on the bad days, it keeps me occupied.

And that’s not enouggh any more.

I will talk to you nice people again tomorrow.