My Town Meeting Lottery, Flat, and Neighbors

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Of Stair Falls, MGH, Sanders, and Sex

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Waiting on Electricity

This is a picture taken at an electro-convulsive clinic just outside of Boston, Massachusetts. I’m a little over a half an hour away from a session where they will administer a shock to my brain and thus compel me to have a grand mal seizure. This is done to treat major depression, and perhaps by people who enjoy that sort of thing for no good reason at all. I highly doubt that. If that were a mental illness, how would you treat that? I wonder. I’m bald not because of anything to do with ECT, I’m just cultivating a look. The look of a man who made a mistake with an electric razor and had to cover it up.

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I like this shirt.

This morning, what is making me less depressed based on circumstances is the defeat of Donald Trump, and the possible victory of Bernie Sanders, at the Iowa Caucus. Depression is defined by the way it exists for no reason, and is unspeakably horrible, yet oddly boring. It is beyond sadness and/or grief, but that shouldn’t be news to anyone who reads this ‘blog, or just knows anything.

The waiting room is packed, as usual, with both patients and people waiting for patients. Waiting for a patient takes a lot of patience, as these sessions are almost three hours long from soup to nuts. The electronic devices must help a lot, I so rarely have one. This is my brother’s computer, actually. Don’t tell him I took it out to McLean Hospital.

Sometimes, they let a person in early. They conduct the procedure every 15 minutes, and there are now two procedure rooms. That would mean every 7 and one half minutes, but my careful math. It’s 10:33am, and my appointment is in 12 minutes, so I should wrap this up. I’ll continue to write to my many readers after my possible headache.

… And After …

I’m sitting in the recovery room and just took a picture, seen below. At the moment, I’m impressed at how intelligent is the level of conversation around me, some of it by nurses and some by other patients who have just had ECT. Pretty impressive for us who were just administered Brevital for an anesthetic, and a current blazing through the

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Is that a Mondrian behind me?

My mind wanders. Is this all worth it? There are certainly quite a few aspects of life of which I’m fond. Sex is good, as is letting Annie off of her leash to dash through the snow, watching a good move, and talking to my brother. Coffee is also a fine thing, indeed. None of it, any of it, can be enjoyed when depressed. So if it takes this, then yes, the answer is a clear, “Yes, it’s very worth it.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Trump Is The Worst Person Ever

You can find my video HERE. I hope you like it. I did, but it was me. I’m no nihilist, but if I didn’t like it, it wouldn’t be alive.

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Opening Day at Fenway, The $8 Hot Dog, and I Miss My Dad

Good day to you all. Today my mind is on a panoply of matters and concerns; ECT twice this week, a meeting with my lawyer, a Town Meeting thing, and various and sundry other concerns. We all got something. But happily today is Opening Day at Fenway Park! Sports are not something I generally give a rat’s ass about, but the exception is baseball. Just a spectacular game, the Red Sox is a great team, and Fenway Park is the best park in baseball. Boston fans are the finest, with a deep knowledge of the game and unrivaled loyalty. And it’s also the most expensive park at which to see a game, something else in which we excel.

Actually, that does suck, but what can you do? You have to lump it.

I’ve amassed a few pictures of Fenway below. I’d love to have a few seats on top of the, “Green Monster.” The very tall green wall in left field. I could get seats for myself and Nancy there for between about $100 (standing room) and $900 (premium seats), depending on when and who they’re playing. Upper bleachers are about $20 a pop. And that’s a Kosher hot dog for $8. It better be. These prices do not make me love the Red Sox any less, it just ensures that I’ll never be at a game!

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The magic Fenway frank.

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A lovely day, like today. Close to 70 degrees, warm sun, and a sure victory against the Nationals.

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Here’s a sight I’ve never seen.

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Make sure you don’t buy one of the obstructed view seats. They’re only OK if you’re blind.

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Isn’t she a beaut?

So a happy distraction today. Rick Porcello will be pitching for the Red Sox, while Jordan Zimmerman, a formidable opponent who pitched a no-hitter (yikes) on September 28, will be on the mound for the Nationals.

I’ll really miss my father, who died two years ago as of June 29. He really loved baseball, and Opening Day. Fuck. What do they say? As we age, the heart breaks or turns to lead. I miss you, Dad. The heart breaks. Anyway…

Go Sox!

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A Naked Skarsgård, The Mountain and the Viper, and Waffles

It’s Sunday morning, and the sun is shining and it’s just lovely alfresco. It’s irritating and making me uncomfortable. A lot of children are outside playing, in ways I suppose they’ve always done so. A lot of bikes, some of those scooter things, and just running to and fro, and yelling for no reason. Kids enjoying themselves doesn’t bother me, I’m no misanthrope, have fun in the sun. Good for them. It’s not that. Some people are returning from church (I assume), or heading out somewhere. To get big, fat Sunday waffles, maybe, at Renee’s Cafe or Mr. Crepe or one of a million cafes and restaurants that are just all over the place.

I don’t envy them…quite the contrary. This apartment is exactly where it’s at for me. Doing a little cleaning, drinking a lot of coffee, napping with the pets, cuddling and just talking with Nancy about this and that; Hillary Clinton, “Pretty in Pink,” how great Alexander Skarsgård looks naked, and personal stuff. The Skarsgård thing came up because he’s going to play Tarzan in a big budget movie coming out next summer. We’re thinking he’ll be wearing a very small loin cloth.

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He is why I’m bisexual.

However, because it’s “nice” outside, it seems wrong to be cooped up in here. Shouldn’t I take Annie up to Menotomy Rocks Park up in the heights? Well, that’s too far away. Other side of town, but it may as well be on the moon. But a walk somewhere. Even going to the movies would be something…an “out.” I’d love to see, “It Follows,” over at the Somerville Theater in Davis Square. But no. That costs money, anyway.

Besides feeling fat, and brooding over a Facebook “friend” I hate calling me a, “creep,” I’m happy. Hell, “Game of Thrones,” premiers tonight. I’m a big fan, deal with it. I’m still upset about The Viper’s demise, but the fight scene with The Mountain was epic. And I just love the Burlington Bar reaction video, particularly the fellow in the white T-shirt up front. I felt his pain. Check it out.

So it’s sunny, but I’m not going anywhere, and I may wash the kitchen floor. Happy day, my friends! You should go out if you’re in New England, it’s a beautiful day.

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The Wisdom of Not Thinking Too Much, or How Things That Are Far Away Or Too Close Can Be Equally Blurry

I’ve never embraced the practice of keeping notes, or a journal, beyond what I occasionally write in here. It’s not for lack of trying. Over the years I’ve bought paper journals, and even a hand-held tape recorder, to help me lap up my insipid thoughts and banal observations. The attempts always failed to one degree or another. There are moments when I succeed and jot down this and that, and I even made a list of everyone I’ve ever fucked. To see if my one-night stands outnumbered the meaningful relationships. They don’t, even though after I made the list, three meaningless, very brief, encounters came to mind. It’s odd to forget sex. It’s another human being for Heaven’s sake.

There have been other brief periods of success regarding pencil on paper journal-keeping. Pen on paper. ECT compels me to keep notes, for practical reasons, to keep from driving my wife crazy by making her repeat herself. Forgetting conversations, ugh. Those I can write down, some of them, anyway. Writing down where I put the remote control or nail clippers isn’t going to happen. There are thoughts and quotes and anything I think is noteworthy, few and far between, but there. Now here.

And that’s what I’m going to relate, a journal entry of mine, something I did. It speaks to the value of journal-keeping, and may compel me to do so more often. In this case, it allows me to see myself as if I were another person. We lose our ability to see clearly if we get too close to something, including ourselves. Something too close is just as blurry as something that is too far away. One benefit of writing, or any creative endeavor, is that part of you is collected for some healthy observation and analysis. And you can share it, or keep it for yourself. Either way, you’re bound to learn something. I have to believe that that’s a good thing. Perhaps it’s a pleasant fiction. God knows.

I love watching people and listening to them. My social phobia prevents me from joining in, most of the time. However, I don’t have to socialize with a great therapist, fat stuntman, or blue-tipped peeping tit-mouse in order to appreciate them. The same is true with people. You can admire them either way. And while I enjoy the blurry spectacle of The Masses, I find the individual within society wicked fascinating. I’m my best example.

Every single one of us is alone, and we all want to realize some dream. We have to reconcile what we want with what we have. Naturally. Human beings grapple endlessly with the concept that the world is a fair and decent place where things make sense, and hard work is rewarded and, “what goes around comes around,” with the fact that the universe is indifferent and, basically, life hurts and can really suck. For a thinking human being, existence is a frozen outpost in a no-man’s land between what is and what could be. Inches away from what is, and one needs binoculars to see what could be. Most of us are kind and compassionate for the most part. Republicans try to change that, with some success, but we are still, well, good.

Our frail bodies are the mediocre instruments of our tremendous minds. Like Mozart trying to create his masterpieces with a ukelele or bagpipe. While I would like to hear what Mozart would have produced with just a ukelele or bagpipe, I’m glad he had more with which to work. I wish our minds had more to work with than arms, legs, hands, feet, vocal chords and ear-holes. We do a little but we don’t a lot.

That is one reason that it is very important to be careful of what one desires. Our minds can get us into so much trouble; with capers, schemes, philosophies, and whatnot. And that brings me to my journal entry.

The entry reads, “February 19, 2013, 4:37PM, logic dictates that I make a choice here.” The logic involved suicide in the face of existential nihilism. I’ve always been comfortable with existential nihilism, and still am, and on that evening I was ruminating about the ancient philosopher Hegesis. I read something, bully for me. He felt that life was made up of more pain than pleasure. If that is the case, he reasoned, suicide is the answer for all of us; rich, poor, fat, thin, beautiful, ugly, man, woman, whatever.

The entry, and my memory, allows me to piece together what happened next. I was sitting on a bench at the Davis Square “T” station. At that moment, I felt I had to make that choice. I was either to kill myself as soon as the opportunity presented itself, which would be the proper end result given how I had embraced Hegesis’ logic. If I didn’t kill myself, I was then either a coward who couldn’t take a simple concept to its logical conclusion, or I didn’t actually believe that life was balanced too heavily in pain vs. pleasure. Despite a very happy childhood, a wonderful family, a full stomach, a warm bed, and a few friends, my mind, hobbled by mental illness, crippled me with depression, anxiety, and self-loathing. Therefore, there was (at least at that moment) more pain than I could bear and little pleasure in sight.

The trouble into which the mind can get you. Fuck.

His philosophy, which he probably used to cultivate a dark and brooding personae to impress women, doesn’t withstand scrutiny. What did I want out of Hegesis? The nihilistic prick. Yes, I live life and face depression and regret and shame and self-loathing. But I get so much help; medication, electro-convulsive therapy, Nancy loves me and I love her, a great therapist, friends who support me, and phenomenal pets. Bipolar disorder most certainly funks up the room, that’s for sure. Sometimes suicide definitely looks like a fantastic option. It’s an an exit, if needed. We’ve all been there. But Mr. Hegesis is wrong. When I make Nancy laugh it counters 1000 hours of depression and self-loathing. You know?

But for a few hours I was convinced Hegesis was right. Earlier that afternoon I had a small meal at a Chinese Restaurant on Holland Avenue. I was amused at what the fortune cookie said, and I taped the slip of paper into my journal. The fortune read, “Many opportunities surround you.” In my frame of mind at the time, I took that to mean that there were many ways to off myself. I could throw myself in front of a bus, or jump off of a building, eat a pound of Limburger cheese, put a hole in the Mystic River, who knows.

So I found myself sitting in the station, thinking violent thoughts. How absurd! At one point, since nobody was around, I walked to the very edge of the platform. The end of the yellow, bumpy part. Every few seconds I had to repel a thought that demanded that I stop the foolishness and just go home. I started to imagine what I would look like smashed along the rail, or if I would produce a huge fart or “Wilhelm Scream” just as the train hit me. Time passed, and finally I could hear the rumble of a train on my side of the platform. “If I just lean forward,” I thought, “I never have to see a loved one die, or feel sorrow or loss or depression again.” If I could just wait for the train and move forward a bit, I would instantly reconcile my nihilism with a practical course of action. I would traverse the frontier between the intellect and the universe. In an odd way, I was being idealistic. While my method of suicide was motivated, at least in part, by watching too many Bugs Bunny cartoons, at least I was finally doing something with my life…by ending it.

But I left. I went home. I kissed my wife. I walked the dog as I smoked my pipe and read some damn thing. The movie, “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?” was on TCM. Creepy movie. Funny, interesting, and…creepy. Anyway, ending your life isn’t doing something with it, I concluded. And by that I mean I really concluded. My decision was made for all time. Suicide is no solution, it’s a waste of a deeply flawed but fundamentally good world, amazing to behold. At least for me, the debate was over. It is over.

One man’s experience, among 7 or so billion. But there it is, along with my well-considered solution.

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