Saturday: America visits a psychiatrist
Receptionist: The doctor will see you now.
America: Great, thanks. And it’s ABOUT TIME! I mean—oh Jeez…
Dr.: Good Morning, America. This is a surprise—I haven’t seen you since…hmm…your drug issues in the 60s?
America: No, we touched base in the early 2000s, but things have been pretty good otherwise, until now. Sigh.
Dr.: Then what brings you here? You seem really overwhelmed.
America: I am. I feel completely out of control, and I need help.
Dr.: Well, let’s start by reviewing your history. Ran away from home because of “irreconcilable differences”—are you still not talking to Mom?
America: We get together once in a while, mostly when the neighbours are rowdy and she needs some help, but I try to keep her at arms length. She can be very controlling.
Dr.: Well, I know how much you hate to be told what to do. Continuing on—a troubled youth with a lot of internal struggle, the “experimental years”, problems with money, an explosive temper—but I thought you’d matured in the last few years. Well, at least the last eight. You were finally starting to get the respect that you felt you’d always deserved. What’s happened to make you so full of angst?
America: Maybe it’s just stress from always being in the public eye, I don’t know, but over the last year, I’ve just been feeling torn apart inside, like I have two minds or something.
Dr.: Interesting. Let’s explore that. What are these minds like?
America: Well, one part of me is pretty reasonable. I feel kind of emotionally distant, but I still want good things for other people and when I’m in THAT frame of mind, I come across as competent and articulate. I DO have a terrible time keeping track of what computer I’m sending emails from…
Dr.: Emails? That should be the least of your worries right now. What else?
America: When I’m in the OTHER frame of mind, I get insanely angry about ridiculous things, I lie, I yell, I’m filled with hate for other people and I want to simultaneously burn things to the ground and build giant walls. I’m like your drunk uncle, only instead of sitting in a lawn chair and slurring, “I love you guys,” I want to just grab someone by the p—
Dr.: Take it easy there! You’re right; this IS a problem. You know, building walls around your feelings is NEVER a solution. You need to talk things out. Have you discussed this with any of your friends?
America: Not really—it’s too embarrassing, and frankly, a little terrifying. I know they’re all worried though. I hear them talking about me, and I try not to care, but it hurts. And then the other side of my mind takes over and all I can think is F*ck them! I’m better AND smarter than all of them put together, and one day I’ll nuke them all!
Dr.: You know your friends care about you. Wanting to nuke them is just a defense mechanism because you’re afraid of being abandoned. But the people who really love and admire you would never do that. You just have to pull yourself together.
America: I’m trying, but I have to be honest—I feel like I could really do some damage to myself. Like in a couple of days, if I don’t get restore a sense of balance and rationality, this internal conflict is going to result in very serious self-harm and I’m scared!!
Dr.: Ok, slow down and just breathe deeply. Deep, cleansing breaths. Think about all the wonderful things you’ve accomplished. Civil rights, great literature, music, space travel, the way you always help out your friends when they’re having problems, the Roomba—let’s focus on THAT, and try to rid your mind of those other, negative thoughts. Come on, America—you’re strong. You can do it! For the next 72 hours, every time you want to act like an a*hole, I want you to take a deep breath and say, “I’m better than this. I’m already great, and I have nothing to prove. People like me just the way I am. I don’t need to be a dick.” Stay OFF social media, drink some chamomile tea, and come back tomorrow for another session. We’ll get through this together.
America: Thanks, Dr. Lincoln. I’m feeling a little better. See you tomorrow.
Receptionist: I’ve scheduled America in for tomorrow as requested. Do you really think therapy will help bring those two minds together, Dr. Lincoln?
Dr.: Not sure. I’ve seen this kind of situation before. Sometimes it gets worse before it gets better–it might take 4 years and some heavy duty drugs to solve this one. Either that, or an international intervention. Get hold of Justin Trudeau and Angela Merkel for me—I want them on standby, just in case.
*Best of luck on Tuesday, America.
Ken and I have been married so long that sometimes we don’t have actual conversations. We just KNOW.
Me: I know, right?
Ken: Uh huh.
Last night, we were driving home, and we passed a sh*tload of pylons:
Ken: Couldn’t get a building permit.
Me: Parking lot then.
Me: That fire.
The one thing we DON’T have synergy with, though, is music. Especially when we’re driving, and Ken has control of the radio.
Me: What IS that? Is that a documentary? Like, on the radio? NO.
Ken: She’s an author. It’s interesting.
Me: She’s crying because she got divorced and her mom won’t forgive her. Her mom needs to be more supportive and you need to find something else to listen to…OK, I’m not 60—try again…this sounds like elevator music…Disco is DEAD, Ken…not COUNTRY!…put on Virgin Radio…you just switched the channel from one commercial to another…go back—that was Nirvana…yes, I know you hate that Calvin Harris song, but I like it—don’t be so judgemental.
We usually just end up compromising on the Comedy Channel:
Ken: Is that?
Me: Yeah. I love him.
Ken: That one joke.
Me: I know, right?