A few weeks ago I was taken in a squad car from my shrink's office to the county psych hospital, the second time in six months that I managed this (diagnosis both times: severe depression with psychotic features). It must have been a full moon because the ward was overflowing with crazies and they shooed me out after only two nights on emergency.
Six months ago, on my maiden voyage, they wanted to certify me for 14 days--and the more I objected, the longer they threatened to keep me. This time around I felt fragile and terrified and wanted to stay a little while, but the more I objected to being released the more vehement they seemed to be about pushing me out the door. Crazy!
Because I had no money and no place to live, I was taken in a cab from the hospital to a "crisis house," something I had no experience with because I come from a part of the country where the homeless and mentally ill are left to fend for themselves in the streets like feral Russian dogs. At the house, I proceeded to have an experience worthy of any stereotypical "lovable crazies" movie, except less irritating and more filled with dramz (and drug dealing).
I was almost kicked out of the house for engaging in illicit sexual activity with another resident (holy Susanna, Batman!), and the other resident, a homeless recovering coke addict, actually was kicked out. Various other dramzzz occurred before I was discharged honorably and began making my way in the world as a card-carrying feeb (receiver of disability benefits as a result of PTSD, chronic severe anxiety, and aforementioned severe depression with psychotic features).
I took in the recovering addict and am currently attempting to make this bizarre relationship work. It's not. I hate that it's not, because I know that after I kick him out he's probably going to be homeless again, he's probably going to use again, and he's probably going to get in trouble with people he owes money to from the last
time he was using. But I have enough on my plate coping with my own problems without shouldering someone else's (far more complex) problems as well.
I used to be really dark and angsty and angry (old journal if you want some really erudite angsting) but with the help of an Awesome Shrink
I am emerging from my den of horror like a small burrowing forest creature blinking into the morning light. Disney-style musical numbers may or may not be forthcoming. Depends on how the psychotherapy goes.
I say all this to get it out, to establish my immediate story, to explain things, but not to define this blog.
Actually, I started a blog in the first place because I love that unique slice of 1980s and '90s pop culture that colored my childhood, and I have things to contribute to its true and proper appreciation on the internet.
The one and only world-famous Pinsky salami stands as a symbol of all that was good in those days, the things we crowded around and marveled over; the things we valued and exchanged as primitive kiddie currency; which were used as our only ammunition against the grown-ups, who had all the power then; which were the origins of impromptu midnight jam sessions in the camp kitchen; which were shared and enjoyed and nourished us all.
I'm getting too deep for my own taste here. It's a damn salami, OK.
Back when I was watching Pinsky replace Michael Stein on SYS
(in its original run), in the itchy suburbs of north Georgia, I had no idea I was on a trajectory that would land me--twice--in a psych ward in downtown San Diego. I had no conception of the weird and amazing people I would meet there and in places beyond. I had no idea how much suffering I could bear, nor how much strength I was capable of dredging up in a genuine crisis.
All I know was that joke about the salami was pretty damn funny. And I still think it is. And that's kind of neat.