Archive for the ‘It Could Be Worse…’ Category

Envy

February 15, 2019

I watched this documentary on Netflix the other day about this story––I liked the documentary, but I was so into this story I’d like anything about it, no matter how poorly done.  Anyway, they briefly interview a detective from the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office who was in charge (I think) of the investigation into the deaths (I tried and failed to take a screenshot of him).  He says, AND I QUOTE, “I’d never even heard of the self-help movement.  I didn’t know there was a self-help movement.”  Never in my life have I envied and pitied someone so much in equal measure!  Ross Diskin might be the most accidentally enlightened man in the universe.

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(This post is categorized as “It Could Be Worse…” because of course it could be worse: you could be James Arthur Ray.)

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Anonymous Advice

February 6, 2019
My husband and I are on a huge local parenting listserv––thousands of subscribers, thousands of pages and multiple groups and sub-groups, etc.––and we both get a daily dispatch from the Advice section.  Mostly it’s people asking for pediatrician referrals or the name of a good roofing guy, but occasionally someone writes in anonymously because what they need advice on is sensitive.

Early on in the days of this most recent maternity leave, I was super bored, so I read through all the old anonymous posts, and boy was it entertaining.  There were a lot of repeat issues (fertility problems, requests for therapist recs, nannies being assholes) but some really out there ones.  This is probably my favorite:

Hi – I have a situation with my nanny that I can’t wrap my head around.  She is claiming a spell was put on her a long time ago and it is causing her to not sleep, get sick & be all around miserable feeling.  However, she still comes to work and is doing a good job, always has & my daughters adore her.  She is in the midst of trying to get help through spiritual guidance.  To date I have not worried a second about my children.  My perspective is there is some mind over matter going on and maybe some mental issues?  However, this is a perspective that doesn’t believe in spirits & black magic.  Has anyone been through this? How understanding as a employer should I be?  I wouldn’t get fired for seeing a therapist, but after what happened on the UWS I am a bit nervous.  Any advice would be much appreciated.  My nanny is from Trinidad. Thank you! 

Honestly, though, the best part might have been how half the responses were like “These beliefs are part of indigenous Caribbean cultures!” and the other half were like, “I think it’s offensive to assume Caribbean people are unsophisticated and still believe in witchcraft!”

 

Peak Brooklyn

January 24, 2019

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My New Favorite Website

December 23, 2018

Two reasons why I have a new favorite website.

1. In 2012, the high school football team in Gypsum, Colorado, rallied around a young fan suffering from leukemia, who lived nearby in the mountains.  A family friend of the boy, a woman in her twenties named Briana, was the intermediary: telling the football team about him, giving interviews to the press, moderating a Facebook page for him, etc.  When he died, the whole town mourned.  But then––surprise!––it turned out the whole thing was a scam.

This is just one example of “Munchausen by Internet,” but it’s one that’s always stuck with me, for reasons I can’t explain.  If someone gave me a few thousand bucks with the stipulation that I had to use it to satiate some longstanding useless desire, I would hire a private investigator to find Briana and Treva Throneberry and just show up at their homes and be like, “Yo ladies, WTF?”

2. When I’m bored, sometimes I will scroll through GoFundMe and try to do a little hypothetical empathy math.  Who deserves my imaginary extra thousand dollars?  The woman with colon cancer, or the man with the brain tumor?  The family who lost their home in a flood (aha, but did they have insurance), or the couple desperate to raise funds for IVF?  The website’s mere existence basically begs a million ethical questions, and I have considered writing about it at length before, but then someone else got there first, which would have pissed me off if the article wasn’t so damn good.

Anyway!  A few weeks back, a friend of mine and I were talking about illness on the Internet, and she gave me the greatest gift of all, which was a link to website called GoFraudMe: a snarky news site that tells you whenever someone commits fraud via crowdfunding!  It’s hilarious, galling, informative, and thought-provoking all at once!  Wanna hear about the nurse accused of killing his patients who took to GoFundMe to raise money for his legal fees?  Sure!  Did you know that Whitney Houston’s sister tried to raise funds to get people to investigate the “foul play” in Whitney and Bobbi Kristina’s deaths?  I did NOT know that!  What about the woman who not only faked cancer for money but said she was a veteran despite never having served? Sign. me. up!

Point being: this website is a trove of great stories (and as an aside, was a great distraction when I was recently in the hospital).  Unfortunately it doesn’t seem to have been updated since September.  All I want for Christmas is MORE GOFUNDME FRAUD STORIES!

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This is why we can’t have nice things.

The Only Email You Want To Receive When You’re in the Hospital

November 21, 2018

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LOL the Headlines

August 23, 2018

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A Tweet

May 4, 2018

I’m about three minutes into the Rachel Dolezal Netflix doc and I’ve already learned a lot.  For example, no one knows how to pronounce the last name “Dolezal.”

Huh

April 20, 2018

It occurred to me this morning while playing Bobby McFerrin’s song “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” for my son that some of the things he suggests brushing off are actually totally worth worrying over.

Ain’t got no place to lay your head
Somebody came and took your bed
Don’t worry, be happy
The landlord say your rent is late
He may have to litigate
Don’t worry, be happy
Oh, ooh ooh ooh oo-ooh ooh oo-ooh don’t worry, be happy
Here I give you my phone number, when you worry, call me, I make you happy, don’t worry, be happy)
Don’t worry, be happy
Ain’t got no cash, ain’t got no style
Ain’t got no gal to make you smile
Don’t worry, be happy
‘Cause when you worry your face will frown
And that will bring everybody down
So don’t worry, be happy
Except for being single, which is not necessarily worrisome (depending on the context), you really should be concerned about being homeless, unstylish and poor!  (Somehow this theoretical person in need of cheering up manages to be both homeless and behind on his rent, though.)  At the end of the song, Bobby sings something like, “I’m not worried, I’m happy!”  Of course you’re not worried, Bobby!  You’ve got all those nice top ten hit royalties!

Bluelight Live

December 26, 2017

So I’m in a weird phase in my life, and one of the things I’m doing to entertain (err, distract) myself is explore odd corners of the Internet.  By far the most exciting site I’ve explored is Bluelight, a well established (but new to me) hub of information for drug users of all stripes. I’ve spent a bunch of time this evening reading blow-by-blows of “precipitated withdrawals” (the more you know!), recommendations of what benzos to take when suffering night terrors, and “eye alignment issues on meth.”  The most exciting post I’ve come across, though, is the below, titled “Have I ruined my amphetamines???” and written by a user who goes by the handle speedyhousewife.  I read it aloud to my husband in a posh British accent, which made me think that perhaps there should be some performance called “Bluelight Live,” a la Letters Live.  Who’s with me?

***

Hello everybody here, what a fabulous resource you have here. I’m not sure of all the proper terminology for everything so please do excuse me for any errors. I also do not know anyone else who uses this, nor does anyone other than the seller know that I use it, so I have no one to ask and Google didn’t help me much at all.

I live in Hampshire in England and i have been secretly taking what I know to be called Speed for about 5 years. It usually comes in a mildly smelly pure white sticky paste, sometimes a bit grainy, wrapped in plastic. It’s about the same size as a small butt plug! I was initially told by the seller to put it in the freezer and cut off what I need, but it tastes nasty, so I have always opened it up, spread it on a silicone board and left it in the airing cupboard to dry out. Once dry the next day, I flex it off the board and whizz it into a powder in a food processor. Then I divide it into 50 cigarette papers for easier swallowing. Always been fine, never been a problem, it has always been pure white and mildly smelly.

2 days ago, I bought some and shoved it in my bag without looking. I arrived home and realised that the house wasnt empty, so in a panic, i shoved it in the gas meter cupboard outside overnight. It was a very cold night and i was panicked so i still didnt actually look at it. The next morning, i opened the gas cupboard and the smell was VILE, I wondered if I had a gas leak! I took out the speed and the smell was coming from that, it was nasty and it was a creamy yellow colour! I spread it on my board, but it wasn’t spreading easily. It also made me feel sick because of the smell * I do have extremely heightened sense of smell for the last 3 years though *. I left it to dry over night and it hasn’t dried well, still quite sticky and the smell is still awful. I’m scared to use it.

Has anybody ever known anything like this? Or could it have reacted whilst hidden in the gas cupboard, either to the gas or the cold night? Will this make the speed dangerous to take? Am I being paranoid and irrational? Is variation in colour and smell normal?

I cannot ask the seller as we have no contact at all to protect my secret. I hide the funds in the secret location at the same time every month and the following day I return to collect it. What should I do? I won’t be able to get anymore for 1 month and I only have 2 days left from my previous supply.

Just in case this isn’t actually called Speed, the effects of it are super increased energy, excess sweating, increased motivation, no appetite, sometimes irrational thoughts and crazy ideas (both good and bad), fast talking too much, increased productivity, reduced judgement when shopping (I.e, likely to massively overspend), feeling of invincibility (I.e, attempting tasks that wouldn’t normally be considered for an untrained late 40s 4ft10 woman, like building a summerhouse from scratch, chasing a burglar for 2 miles on foot and roofing repairs) and sexual rampancy. I dont know how much this is in weight that i buy, but it is much much much much cheaper than a months supply of cocaine. Previous threads I have read have not mentioned any prices of things so I haven’t quoted the price to avoid flouting any rules.

The effects hit in 20-30 mins, and usually last from 7.20am-5pm. Once worn off, there is ravenous hunger and occasional emotional sensitivity, but nothing else really, does not affect sleep that night unless a second amount is taken at 5pm. When not able to take for 2 or3 days, major paranoia kicks in, but that might just be my mind and nothing to do with the speed. If it’s not speed, I’d love to know what it might be as I’m really paranoid that I won’t be able to get this if my seller ceases trading. But it was speed I initially asked for.

Thank you so much for reading and for any help! Middle class bitch here with no other help available!

A Prayer

November 28, 2017
Dear God, I am so discouraged about my work.  I have the feeling of discouragement that is.  I realize I don’t know what I realize.  Please help me dear God to be a good writer and to get something else accepted.  That is so far from what I deserve, of course, that I am naturally struck with the nerve of it.  Contrition in me is largely imperfect.  I don’t know if I’ve ever been sorry for a sin because it hurt You.  That kind of contrition is better than none but it is selfish.  To have the other kind, it is necessary to have knowledge, faith extraordinary.  All boils down to grace, I suppose.  Again asking God to help us be sorry for having hurt Him.  I am afraid of pain and I suppose that is what we have to have to get grace.  Give me the courage to stand the pain to get the grace.  Oh, Lord.  Help me with this life that seems so treacherous, so disappointing.
— Flannery O’Connor, A Prayer Journal