Friday, October 06, 2006

I think we're alone now.

Just as I'd planned, my entire audience has died of the boredom I've inflicted, and so I am now free to talk about things that really matter to me.

Like the weather.

No, not the 10,000 Maniacs song, although that is worth a listen every now and again. Today, it has turned rather cold and grey outdoors, perfect weather for the obstruction of the harvest moon. Here I was planning to test my rods and cones with a book tonight, and it's cloudy. Why does the sky mock me so?

I spent an unusual amount of time outdoors this year, because someone has to accompany the cats on their expedition to the great hedge, and everyone else seemed to be busy. So today, I am just as annoyed by the cold ground as my small black counterparts.

Not to worry, however, as I always have things to do indoors...like read the e-mail!

What better notice for the NY Department of Health (and Mental Hygiene, can't forget the clean brains) to send out on a day when everyone's Seasonal Affective Disorder is kicking up but a notice that depression is treatable. Yes, I signed up for mosquito spraying notices, I get helpful reminders that it's okay to be sad, as long as you don't mope about for more than two weeks.

The reminder that depression lives in all of us, waiting to strike, merely says that no one has to live with depression. Much like those delightful commercials full of depressed people who are unwilling to play with their basset hound or ADD children.

The Depression, It's Treatable brochure tells its readers how to treat depression, and how to spot the signs of depression in those around you. Yes, there's nothing I like better than someone telling me I may be depressed. Well, except for people telling me my lady napkins have leaked down the back of my pants.

I opened the six-page PDF bulletin on depression so you all wouldn't have to. Here are the highlights:

Talk to your doctor. This is only applicable to people who actually have doctors. I had a doctor when I was 14. His office was moldy.

Dial 311. I'm not sure what this achieves. I called 311 once when a pipe froze and was showering me with icy cold anger. The helpful operator told me to call a plumber. I had no idea that was what plumbers were for, really. I thought they were exhibition artists.

There are pictures in the brochure. Stock photos, of course, of people who probably are not having concentration and appetite problems at all. Doc Brown from Back To The Future feels hopeless. Aww, it's okay. Help must be on page 2.

Ponies!Oh, it's treatable by dressing in bright colors and having your wife drag you, screaming, to the park! Yay!

Walking can help prevent depression. Having someplace to walk to is probably also helpful. Having the time to walk somewhere, even if people look at you funny when you arrive, is a huge plus.

Some people may need medication, and that medication may take up to 8 weeks to work. In the meantime, entertain your family members by selling your baby at the five and dime, removing doors and appliances from your house, or enrolling in higher learning. Who knows, maybe you'll find quantum physics a breeze once the drugs kick in!

Being around a depressed person is not easy. Is this why I am writing only to entertain myself? No, that can't be, I'm a happy and delightful person. Anyway, people are supposed to attempt to interest depresed people in activities. I hear bus surfing rocks.

In the brochure, there's a picture of a depressed jock. His jacket reads, "Feeling worthless." Now, I don't know about you, but the makers of clothes like that really aren't helping. I much prefer a nice Engrish "live the casual style" jumper to all that worthless-feeling claptrap. Varsity sweaters are far from worthless, little Jimmy, they cost enough to feed a low-income family for a month, you right bastard.

Depression may appear differently in children. Yes, does your child only like it when the Muppets die? Does your child go about saying their imaginary friend is named Adolf and they want to play Buchenwald in the stove? These could be signs that you need to drug your child like mad immediately. Do not speak to your child, do not enroll your child in karate classes and most of all do not take feelings seriously--these actions could cause the pharmaceutical companies of the world to collapse.

I am not touching the last page, as I do not want Brooke Shields on my ass. If it comes down to drowning your child or taking drugs, for Christ's sake take the drugs. I am not qualified to make a statement on post-natal depression, although I now feel that puppy-rearing cannot be much different. Do not kill the puppy, take the drugs.

The brochure ends with a reminder that some doctor somewhere really cares about your mental state and wants your money. I think I may have missed the point of the brochure, as it says nothing about mosquito spraying in the Bronx.

Other bulletins on the DOHMH website are such gems as get a flu shot if you're gay, and everyone that breathed on any day following September 11, 2001, is gonna die coughing up very bad things.

The rest of the day's e-mail is not half as entertaining, and so I'll spare you the note on my RSS feed being A-OK and the definition of the word, "Techno-Thriller."

Because, y'know, I'm sure anybody but me is going to read this. Hell, I'm not even reading it...I just lived it.

(To see the brochure I have just laid into mercilessly, visit http://www.nyc.gov/html/doh/downloads/pdf/email/dohmhnews5-11.pdf.)
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3 comments:

Rainbow Heron said...

I dress in bright clothing and I'm still depressed. Evanescence must be chipper- they wear black. Maybe they're onto something: the key to happiness is to look miserable, that way you can laugh with glee when the normal-looking depressed masses go by. Did I mention I've been depressed since age 8? Oh well, I'll speak with my doctor about it on Thursday. The government pays for her. Really, what does it say when you buy the latest Weird Al and Evanescence cds in the same week?

That brocheure is rather simplistic. I mean, what telephone needs interpretation into 170 languages? "Ring!" means "Ring!" no matter what language it's in.

Rainbow Heron said...

Sorry, that deleted one was mine. I didn't know that you could change the Blogger settings so that it wouldn't display your real name on this thing (which is the only reason why I kept deleting them). I like privacy.

BrideOfPorkins said...

Nah, Amy Lee has said her lyrics come from her life and she writes a lot of them so people don't feel so alone. She's great, if I had an eighth of her ability to make crappy things sound that good, I'd be rather...not sure happy is the word...Hmm.

I think buying Weird Al and Evanescence together shows you've got good taste in music.

I have to put up my White & Nerdy score. Heh.

All of the brochures from the DOH (I'm almost convinced they had to add the MH just to avoid the Simpsons jokes) are ridiculously simplistic, they're just asking to be made fun of. The pictures are the best.

I dunno, Ring in Japanese is Ringu, and I'm not sure 311 operator could help Samara with any of her problems. 311 oughta be careful what it asks for.

Have no fear, I delete your deleted posts from this end too to keep your privacy private. ;)