Saturday, March 01, 2008
The renowned lecturer, innovative scientist and "Shrink to the Stars" takes a rare opportunity to dole out his advice to those he normally wouldn't give the time of day, all because of his love for humanity and that unpleasant community service sentence.
When I submit entries or comments to writerly blogs run by amusing editorial types, even though many of the readers know my online identity, I still feel compelled to click "anonymous" at the last minute and slink back into the shadows. How do I cure myself of this zero personality disorder?
Every time you submit anonymously, put a dollar into a jar. At the end of the year, send me the money, and I'll put together a big Evil Psychiatrist party. Though you won't be invited (hey, you'd be a real downer), your anonymity will have brought joy to many.
Dear Evil Psych,
It is all about me, isn't it?
Author of going to be the best damned book ever written, hold on to your wallet, we're going to make millions together and you only criticise my work because you're jealous and not smart enough to understand it and what do you mean it's not believable, I was there, it actually happened, and you just don't understand how important it was but it was an important lesson that I have to share with the world. Actually.
To be frank--and I'm always frank (why, I even go so far as to criticize waiters and hair stylists when their work doesn't meet the high standards a person of my standing has every right to expect from his admirers and servants)--I would have to say--and keep in mind that this is just one man's opinion, albeit one highly influential man who has achieved the greatness for which he was destined, and much sooner than expected; and who enjoys a good cheese danish with French roast coffee--not really.
Last tim u aksepted kweschins u sed mi spel een wuz bad. Az a rezult I tuk a long wok and fel in 2 a dep depreshin. 4choonitlee, mi oners fownd me and it ternd owt thuh depreshin wuz akchooalee a seenk hol. B cuz I discuvrd it errlee, thuh sit!ee wuz abl 2 fix it b 4 thuh hol naybrrrhud wuz kunsoomd. I wuz a lokul hero and in al thuh payprs. Mi oners evin gav me a treet and sed gud boy! How du u du it Evl Sikiatrist?
Gud Boy in Grrrreenvl
Thousands of lives have been saved, and while I appreciate your giving me the full credit, that's hardly fair. The truth is, it's the city of Greenville that should be giving me the full credit, including the key to the city and a substantial reward.
All I want to do is sleep. What should I do? Is the answer obvious?
You need to dump your husband and take up with a man who won't bug you constantly, and who I know can keep you happy and keep you awake: Mr. Coffee.
Recently I was stood up at the altar; well, a seaweed-covered rock, given that it was to be a beach wedding. I have learned that my fiance was actually seeing three other women at the time. How should I recover from this trauma?
Word on the street is it was you who didn't show up. The good news is, your man has dumped the other three women. The bad news is, he's fallen in love with a cute 27-year-old bakery owner.
I often feel like I should wear a black cape when I'm in public, but I always chicken out at the last second. I've noticed that you used to wear a cape, but now you don't. I've also noticed that you darkened your eyebrows recently and changed your eye color. Also, you now roll your garbage cans to the curb between 6:30PM and 7PM on Monday and Thursday evenings, instead of early Tuesday and Friday mornings like you used to, except last Tuesday when you forgot. Can you offer me some advice on my cape dilemma? Please write back soon! Or just shout the answer out your window. I'm the woman in the blue Ford Taurus. ;)
Indecisive in Your Driveway
HEY LADY!! YOU'RE DRIPPING OIL THERE! I JUST HAD THAT DRIVEWAY PRESSURE WASHED!! COME ON, MOVE IT!!!
Dear Evil Editor:
I am just 18 years old, lithe, nubile and pregnant. I have a rare genetic disorder in my family that crops up every few generations: we bear furry young. I have ultrasonic confirmation that such is the case with my current condition. Even though some might view my offspring as more akin to werewolf (or weredingo -- there's an Austrailian brach) than human, I know that you are not counted among them. Having luked this sight since its inception, (well prior to this conception) I am well aware of your ah, should I say, affection for weres and how! I do not feel that I am prepared to take on the challenges that raising this child might bring and I was wondering if you would be interested in adoption? Please contact me at your earliest convenience, being mindful of the lunar cycle, of course.
A silent minion
Evil Editor? I think you put your letters in the wrong envelopes, babe. Just my luck, I get this EE clown's weredingo spiel, and he's probably got my tasteful nude pics.
Dear Evil Psychiatrist,
Recently I am having stressed at work. I am the facilitator of a non-profit organizational with the goal of returning to people their money that has been lost or unclaimed for reasons of unknown death. As you can maybe imagine this work requires much correspondence! Some people are cordial in their response, but occasionally such as in recent weeks I have epistolized with very shrewd and tenaciously individuals, hence my increased stressing. I would be most gratefully if you could relate to me some ways to ease the stressing. As time is preciousness, I do not wish to make yours unprofitable. Any advice you can offer to me in this matter I will gladly compensate you handily in advance. Please forward a bank account number to which I may electronically wire payments.
Ameribank 024 9837711. No, wait, that's my savings account, and it already has half a million in it. Send it to my checking account: 923349854. That'll be safer.
I'm scared of my psychiatrist. He looks angry. What should I do?
Paying your bill on time would be a good start, Mrs. Langton. Yes, I recognized your font. I feel certain you wouldn't want me so upset that I accidentally posted a transcript of our sessions on the Internet, now would you?
So, I'm like in the airport after persuading the bitch at check-in that she can't bump me and reroute me through fucking Manila to get from Atlanta to Austin and those dickwads at security have xrayed my pantyhose and shone a torch up my ass and now I'm trying to get to the gate dodging round those asswipe "business" men in their cheap sports coats and Gap chinos, followed around by Tumi rollalongs like they're training guide dogs or something, and they're weaving along in front of me with a fucking Star Trek communicator sticking out of one lug with a flashing blue strobe that could bring the airplanes off course, and they're saying like "Hello! Hello? Hi! Yes. I'm in the airport. The airport! I'm going to catch a plane. Right. At the airport. Talk to you later," and all I want to do is get on my fucking plane and have a drink and get home sometime before fucking midnight, so, WTF?
I feel for you, man. I can't help you with the airport, but if you want to discuss why you're wearing pantyhose, make an appointment.
Hunter S. Thompson hails from my hometown. (At least he did before he moved out west and ended up killing himself. Maybe it was existential angst that did him in. Maybe it was facing the reality of his declining years. Maybe it was both. Maybe it was neither. I'm not him, so I don't know.)
Well, anyway, it was his hometown first, really, long before it was mine, and he didn't feel all that at home there - any more than I ever did.
He was one of my written-word heroes before the killing himself part of that story happened.
So my question is this - do you think restlessness and disenchantment are, maybe not necessary equipment, but maybe often helpful, in the formation of an author's temperament?
And, is it helpful to have been from a place like Louisville, a city I still think of by its slogan back in the day: "The City of the Seventies"? Because it still works, you know, that slogan. Sloggy, doughy, dead-zone memories of a place that you can only fit in if you’re like everyone else, is what lives there. That's why Hunter didn't much like going back there. Me neither. Because it never changes on purpose.
God, lady, I'm about ready to off myself after that. Where's my fuckin' Prozac? You didn't happen to write Hunter S. Thompson a fan letter about three years ago, did you?
Why am I so neurotically insecure?
You feel no one likes you. For the rest of the week give every stranger you encounter a big hug. It's a good way to uncover people's true feelings and set your mind at ease.
At my last book club meeting, a woman talked about a recent tour of Dubai. Apparently the German tour guide pointed out a Locals house where Western women can have affairs with Emariti men. Apparently this is a secret.
How can I get these women to talk about books at our book club meetings? I'm fed up with doing all this reading for nothing.
The direct approach usually works best:
You: "Ladies, I fantasize as much as any of you about having an affair with an Emariti man, but we're here to discuss the Koran."
Them: "Again? Can't we discuss Novel Deviations for once?"