The successor to TimeCube?
July 8, 2008 12:52 PM   Subscribe

Bat. shit. insane. Words fail me. This part almost makes sense, but that's about it.
posted by desjardins (160 comments total) 22 users marked this as a favorite
 
tc;dr

t= 19,537 words
c= crazy
dr= skimmed; got a headache.
posted by quin at 12:58 PM on July 8, 2008 [2 favorites]


Oddly enough, I find the design itself very pleasing in its rigorous consistency and use of primary colors. I predict that within a decade the NYT online will look like this.
posted by MarshallPoe at 1:00 PM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


what does the colon mean? i must know.

What I should also let you know is that I do not have my own computer. Even if I could afford one, this is one situation which is better left to the experts. I have been paying a graphics company to use theirs. I finally obtained an E-mail address and will be placing my book on eBay. We have spent much of the morning on this date of Sept. 27th working on that.

Yet another reason the self-publishing industry will never really work.
posted by nosila at 1:00 PM on July 8, 2008 [2 favorites]


Crazy people rant on Intarweb. Film at 11.


And no, this does not touch TimeCube.
posted by terpia at 1:01 PM on July 8, 2008


The words on the page say: "madness," but the professional-looking white background says: "professional-looking white background."
posted by Krrrlson at 1:01 PM on July 8, 2008 [23 favorites]


This is what makes the web worthwhile. Honest.
Common people armed only with their fears, joys, paranoias and FrontPage.
Great find.
posted by Thorzdad at 1:03 PM on July 8, 2008 [3 favorites]


TimeCube is its own successor. Only a one-day-thinking Educated Stupid Cubic Time Denier could fail to understand that!
posted by contraption at 1:03 PM on July 8, 2008 [12 favorites]


Too crazy to not be fiction. Entertaining nonetheless.
posted by smackfu at 1:03 PM on July 8, 2008


This is a Conspiracy in the Forth Degree.
posted by [NOT HERMITOSIS-IST] at 1:03 PM on July 8, 2008 [2 favorites]


Also it starts off with center justified text, the utility of which I've remarked on in the past.
posted by quin at 1:03 PM on July 8, 2008


I'm thrown off by the lack of a black background.
posted by OmieWise at 1:04 PM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


Why do we make fun of people with mental illnesses? We wouldn't post the website of someone with a physical disability and say "Ha! Look at the pictures of her in her wheelchair! Lol!" but we do this regularly with people with mental illnesses. It is probably hard on this person to have these delusions and this paranoia. It is probably hard on his or her family. I know a lot of people enjoy the batshitinsane posts, but it just seems wrong to me.
posted by ND¢ at 1:05 PM on July 8, 2008 [50 favorites]


via Reddit?
posted by stvspl at 1:05 PM on July 8, 2008


Sad.
posted by yhbc at 1:05 PM on July 8, 2008


what does the colon mean? i must know.

It's my pause for breath so that I can continue screaming. The stream of consciousness, it never ends...

posted by quin at 1:05 PM on July 8, 2008


Sometimes these non-aquatic apes have impressive academic credentials. One should never be too easily impressed with this. Many colleges have departments consisting of professors who can't instruct. They find students who can't learn and in exchange for much ego-entertaining, falsify credits and grades on their transcripts. One of the methods of ego-entertainment is to publicly glorify the phony department by boasting about their superior skills, and eliminating the public appearance of anyone who easily competes with their level of competence. However such elimination need not be violent, it is often an issue of political maneuvering.

Okay, despite the obvious paranoid schizophrenia, this is actually a pretty accurate description of your average Ivy League school.

I believe that student-perpetrated school massacres are performed by those who are minimally aquatic or non-aquatic apes. I also believe that the critical issue is financial independence, and that these are individuals who have not found any technique to achieve financial dependence.

Ok, yeah, thats just nuts.
posted by Avenger at 1:08 PM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


LOLCRAZYPEOPLE
posted by dersins at 1:08 PM on July 8, 2008


semi-colon, even. thanks for not harping on that egregious error yet, folks. too busy beating up on the batshitinsane, i guess...
posted by nosila at 1:08 PM on July 8, 2008


He/She?'s got it right: The best way to enjoy paranoia is with a tropical fruit cocktail in the rightmost column.

Tinfoil Hat + Paper Umbrella = Crazy, Delicious
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 1:10 PM on July 8, 2008 [2 favorites]


Avenger: I love the non-aquatic apes label. I'm totally using that.
posted by nosila at 1:11 PM on July 8, 2008


This sounds like someone I used to work with a few years ago. A few of her BSI claims (of which I am not exaggerating in the slightest):

Steve McQueen taught her how to drive a car.

Her ex-husband owns a chain of dental franchises, worth millions.

Her ex-husband was also declared legally dead after falling off his roof (he lived).

Her next door neighbor is a covert CIA operative, who admitted to her that he had carried out sanctioned assassinations in the past.

Regularly attends parties at Ted Danson's house.

Is a close personal friend to Bill Clinton.

Spent her entire first pregnancy in a hyperbaric chamber, during which a transparent "bowl" was inserted into her abdomen in order to observe the fetus.

Allergic to salt and metal.

Flies around the country on weekends and conducts Evangelical seminars.

Owns a $5 million home in Newport Coast, with Rolls Royces in the garage (yet chooses to live with her son in an apartment in Tustin and drive a Toyota pick-up).
posted by Brocktoon at 1:13 PM on July 8, 2008


Ted Danson's house?! That's not so cool. Just ask Larry David.

(I apparently can't get enough of this thread.)
posted by nosila at 1:14 PM on July 8, 2008


HOLY SHIT! WORDS!
posted by Caduceus at 1:16 PM on July 8, 2008


Hmm, this thread seems like an appropriate place to link to my current obsession, yvettesbridalformal.com.
posted by arcanecrowbar at 1:19 PM on July 8, 2008 [30 favorites]


Desjardins, this is the best thing you've done since that hat trick against the Kings in the '93 Cup finals. Very nice.
posted by Mister_A at 1:19 PM on July 8, 2008


hey, what if she were in a carnival and we could pay money to walk in and listen to her rant and rave. That would be even better than this post. I bet she's fat too, fat loonies are HILARIOUS.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 1:19 PM on July 8, 2008


It's not nice to stare.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 1:20 PM on July 8, 2008


I only read the first page or so... but the storytelling is just not very good. I assume that she is accusing the customs agent of poisoning her inhaler with BST? She certainly never says that much, she only says that a search was preformed and then there was some pharmacist that she claims was convicted of conspiracy. I don't understand the relevance of any of this :)

It does sound crazy, though, and that is always amusing.
posted by jrockway at 1:21 PM on July 8, 2008


"I know Prince William is jealous of my web-side and does not want me to achieve financial independence. What I don't understand is why. When my ancestor of four million years ago harvested fish and vegetal resources from the seabed floor, she had her financial independence. It is therefore that I conclude that this is an evolutionary aberration. "

I think the key to understanding all of this is - She is a mermaid. And once you assume the existence of an anti-mermaid conspiracy by the non-aquatic apes this all follows logically.
posted by Ragma at 1:21 PM on July 8, 2008 [4 favorites]


I used to think crazy people were interesting but now I just find them dull. It's always the same thing - they are descended from glorious X, are persecuted by Y which prevents them from attaining Z. It's sort of like conspiracy-minded nationalism on a personal scale. Anyways get off my street corner.
posted by fleetmouse at 1:22 PM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


arcanecrowbar: When you click on the link for a map, you get this. That's just plain awesome.
posted by nosila at 1:22 PM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


Very, very strange.

This kind of mind has always simultaneously repulsed and engaged me. When I worked for a large document center, we used to find letters and pamphlets and attempts at 'zines by folks with similar fixations on the details of their lives and enough paranoia and narcissism to believe it somehow relevant to the overall condition of the world but not enough coherency to make it into a real memoir.

Sometimes you saw a speck of truth in what they'd written, but they were often too difficult to read through to suss out that speck, instead driving you away with the non-stop fixation on the vital minutia of their histories up to that point and whatever conspiracies they deemed important enough to intersect with their lives.

This is like all of those, complete with pictures completely removed from anything you'd think to see on the page but so cherished by the sharing party that they find some way to make it all justifiable for inclusion.

I'm not sure about relevance here, but it's always interesting (to me) to take a brief look into a mind reminiscent of the cluttered den of a mad scientist, only without all the science.
posted by batmonkey at 1:22 PM on July 8, 2008 [2 favorites]


Summary please, or at least a recap of the conclusion? I made it as far as: I cured the illness in March of 2001 with a liquid stabilized oxygen--the most powerful anti-infective in the world.
posted by marxchivist at 1:25 PM on July 8, 2008


And, really, you could say the above about 90% of our casual online output, if you put it all in one randomly disconnected overshare.
posted by batmonkey at 1:25 PM on July 8, 2008


You know, now that you mention it, I remember a friend from high school who was always telling us that his uncle was a Cardinal in the Vatican and that he (17 year old kid) worked for Lockheed on the weekend, "designing tanks for the Army".

Also, that he was going to move into the Vatican so the Church would help him with his pipe-organ skillz. I think there may be more people like this than we think.

But are they really that different from the rest of us? Don't we all have wild or zany fantasies sometimes? Maybe they're just missing the one line of neural code that helps the rest of us distinguish between "My fantasy life as a spy" and "My real life as a worker drone"?
posted by Avenger at 1:25 PM on July 8, 2008


Wow, arcanecrowbar--that page is amazing. I might plan a trip to Florida just to meet Yvette in person.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 1:27 PM on July 8, 2008


dr. bronnerfilter
posted by docpops at 1:27 PM on July 8, 2008 [3 favorites]


And the next time you trespass into my bedroom, I will spit my disease into your eyes.


I'm using that next time I have to break up with someone.
posted by vrakatar at 1:28 PM on July 8, 2008 [20 favorites]


ND¢: From the about-page

A typical weblog is one person posting their thoughts on the unique things they find on the web. This website exists to break down the barriers between people, to extend a weblog beyond just one person, and to foster discussion among its members.

If someone posted a link to someone in a wheelchair who does something unique with it, it could spark some interesting discussions and break down some barriers. Who knows, this post might result in a mind blowing and serious discussion on the pros and cons of giving mentally ill people access to world wide publishing tools? I'll admit that the initial phrasing for the linktext doesn't encourage it, but it could happen. Theoretically. I suppose. Maybe.
posted by mnsc at 1:29 PM on July 8, 2008 [2 favorites]


The link to Eva Braun is a bunch of yearly family Christmas letters. As you read you get the story of Kevin's steady decline into schizophrenia contrasted with his brother's successes. It's heartbreaking to read. But they accept tragedy and soldier on. That's the best short story I've read in decades. Best of the Web.
posted by RussHy at 1:30 PM on July 8, 2008 [11 favorites]


Damn, 20 comments while I was writing that... Too bad I don't speak english.
posted by mnsc at 1:30 PM on July 8, 2008


why was i reminded of reading a nigerian scam e-mail when looking at that site?

disturbing.
posted by djenigma at 1:31 PM on July 8, 2008


Metafilter: Spitting our disease into your eyes.
posted by elfgirl at 1:32 PM on July 8, 2008 [2 favorites]


Why had the infectious disease specialist not explained this to me? Why had he not associated my condition with the Mad Cow disease now receiving much attention in England?

In early December of 2000, I contacted the World Health Organization of the United Nations requesting an investigation into a possible genocide in progress at Heathrow Airport. My original letter was anonymous, but when I sensed activity, I sent a follow-up letter in which I identified myself.


I made a very interesting sound when I read this, over and over again just to make sure I had read it correctly.
posted by spacediver at 1:34 PM on July 8, 2008


Hmm, this thread seems like an appropriate place to link to my current obsession, yvettesbridalformal.com.

Wow. Thanks for posting that; I haven't laughed so hard in a long time.
posted by vorfeed at 1:36 PM on July 8, 2008


Why was I told I have a sex-drive problem
when David Duchovny, the star of The X-Files,
the married man with AIDS and $10,000,000 debt,
subliminally insisted he could only achieve
sexual excitement with me
if I complied with their subliminal demands?
posted by unmake at 1:36 PM on July 8, 2008


This sort of thing is funny until you realize that this isn't someone that's just acting silly, it's someone whose perception of reality is perpetually garbled, and they're just struggling to make sense of it all. Their brain has betrayed them.

It's knowing that just a couple of percentage points difference in chemical balance would put anyone in the same position that scares the hell out of me. When I catch myself doing something like absent-mindedly trying to sort whiteboard markers into the "perfect" order and position on the table during a meeting that I wonder just how easy the descent into madness might be.
posted by CaseyB at 1:41 PM on July 8, 2008 [11 favorites]


The link to Eva Braun is a bunch of yearly family Christmas letters. As you read you get the story of Kevin's steady decline into schizophrenia contrasted with his brother's successes. It's heartbreaking to read. But they accept tragedy and soldier on. That's the best short story I've read in decades. Best of the Web.

Yeah, that's really powerful. I feel ambivalent about reading them, though. I wonder if the rest of the family knows they're on the web.
posted by mr_roboto at 1:44 PM on July 8, 2008


I made a very interesting sound when I read this, over and over again just to make sure I had read it correctly.

Me too!

It's weirdly addictive. I keep saying, I'm just going to read one more paragraph/sentence. It's hard to stop.

Great find, desjardins. Thanks!
posted by rtha at 1:45 PM on July 8, 2008


This is fun! Select a page at random, scroll to a random point, and you get something like this!

"I AM DEMANDING OF ALL GOVERNORS, AS WELL AS MEMBERS OF THE SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES (ESPECIALLY THOSE OF THE REPUBLICAN PARTY), TO DO EVERYTHING POSSIBLE TO KEEP THAT MONKEY IN HER CAGE. IF YOU FAIL IN SUCH ENDEAVOR, I EXPECT YOU TO ATTEND THE FUNERALS OF ALL SOLDIERS IN YOUR DISTRICT."
posted by yellowbinder at 1:45 PM on July 8, 2008


The problem with this website is that there aren't any jump links for proper attribution.
posted by parilous at 1:48 PM on July 8, 2008


After this, I resolved that all doctors are only to perform long distance telephone exams. I found one in Washington, D.C. who finally explained to me that dysfunctions in the body can sometimes originate in the controlling mechanisms of the brain stem.
I think you misunderstood... what the doctor said was, "It's all in your mind." Or possibly even, "You are sick in the head."
posted by vertigo25 at 1:48 PM on July 8, 2008


Maybe this will help clarify? Mmm, no, probably not.
posted by Joe Invisible at 1:50 PM on July 8, 2008


If someone posted a link to someone in a wheelchair who does something unique with it, it could spark some interesting discussions and break down some barriers.

Yeah, but this isn't that. This is pointing and laughing, which is mostly just kinda dickish.
posted by dersins at 1:51 PM on July 8, 2008 [2 favorites]


This is one of the saddest things that I have recently read.
posted by prefpara at 1:51 PM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


I bet she's fat too, fat loonies are HILARIOUS

Methinks this thread emits odourless gasses which interfere with the effective operation of the Classy Gland.
posted by CynicalKnight at 1:52 PM on July 8, 2008 [2 favorites]


"At the time of my possible cancer diagnosis in the Fall of 1999, the Royal Family became obsessed with obtaining keys to my home for acquisition of my wedding dress upon my demise."
posted by bunnytricks at 1:53 PM on July 8, 2008


Go to Google Gropus and search "MI5 Persecution". This is what that reminded me of. You could spend an entire day reading those posts.
posted by Zambrano at 1:54 PM on July 8, 2008


I was some super special 'liquid stabilized oxygen'.
posted by rand at 1:54 PM on July 8, 2008


Groups
posted by Zambrano at 1:54 PM on July 8, 2008


Anyone else here get email from Slawomir J. Borowy? These two should hook up.
posted by MrMoonPie at 1:55 PM on July 8, 2008


This part makes sense to me: "She asked me if I wanted this kitten. This was the first time I noticed she had a cat in her hands. I nodded and she handed him to me."

And they lived happily ever after. Doesn't that kitty look happy?
posted by jabberjaw at 1:57 PM on July 8, 2008


This is extraordinary.
posted by Greg Nog at 2:00 PM on July 8, 2008


My relative, a neuro-surgeon, sent his next Christmas card to me two months late.

Send out your cards on time OR ELSE YOUR RELATIVE MIGHT GET MAD COW DISEASE.

Just a friendly reminder from the Christmas Card Council. [Not Christmas Card Conspiracy-ist]
posted by rmless at 2:01 PM on July 8, 2008 [2 favorites]


Although reading this does make me squirm and feel a bit voyeuristic, I can't help but be thankful for it as well. I would much rather experience this second-hand via the interwebs; it makes me thankful that neither myself nor my loved ones have those particular switches set to "crazy" (at least, as far as I know).

That poor woman. I hope she finds some relief, somewhere.
posted by m0nm0n at 2:03 PM on July 8, 2008


Is the College Graduate Stew part legally ok? It doesn't seem like it.
posted by auralcoral at 2:06 PM on July 8, 2008


I will henceforth only make lists in backwards numerical order such that anything new in the future will be immediately visible.
posted by The Straightener at 2:07 PM on July 8, 2008


I would like to have google gropus.
posted by everichon at 2:08 PM on July 8, 2008 [3 favorites]


I am estranged from my father and brother.

No shit?
posted by Huck500 at 2:10 PM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


On 60 Minutes last night I saw a very informative report by Bob Simon on flying mice who have exploited the trade of mutual funds.

Well, that explains why no one can figure out what the hell is going on with the economy.
posted by elfgirl at 2:16 PM on July 8, 2008 [9 favorites]


We make fun of the websites of people with mental illnesses for a number of reasons:

1) They generally look awful. Not merely Geocities bad, but truly awful. It's a teaser that let's you know - hey, pal, you're in for a treat. You could possibly learn a great deal about site design simply by doing the opposite. You need that animated GIF of UFOs entering the Hollow Earth at the Pole. Might take ten minutes to load, but it's perfect.

2) One or more of the premises presented is, on the face of it, absurd. Absurdity a touchstone of humor. Crutch? Not so much. "Funny as a."

3) Typically, the sites present a level of detail that makes for hours of fun, not for a quick laugh. They're quotable, there is a lot of "information," you can pass little bits back and forth to your friends. "No, no, check this out, he's got a section on how they military built time machines to go back and film the crucifixion of Jesus." They're sites that keep on giving. Guy in a leg brace? His manifesto is not going to be that involved.

4) Their ideas, whether a singular obsession or numberless philosophies on trivia, are presented with hubris. Believing you're not crazy takes a great force of will when you find yourself trying to shove a ham down a garbage disposal with your bronzed baby shoes at 5 a.m., because the Dwellers Beneath must be appeased, because you forgot to sing the theme song to Gilligan's Island just right before bed. That conviction that you alone have it all worked out (because those bastards don't know about the Dwellers Beneath, and act like there's something wrong with you GIVE ME BACK MY SHOES) can rapidly become hubris. Look at how serious the TimeCube guy is; his claims are without self-doubt as they are inflated. He knows how wrong everyone else is. We mock people who are that annoying, whether or not they have a mental illness. Being not wrong, but willfully fixated on how you alone have found The Truth - that leads to hilarity. Get a bunch of people who think you've found The Truth, that's a cult ... those are often funny, but scary, too. That guy alone, his theory about what the QUEERS are doing to the SOIL, and a copy of FrontPage 97 - comedy gold.

5) You cannot overlook the fact that people with mental illnesses can be very, very irritating to deal with. It's a function of #4. Yeah, you might have felt sorry for him at first, but after the eighty-second time you are woken up in the dead of night by that guy who keeps screaming that it's ALIEN HOUR and they're COMING to recharge his IMPLANT, your pity has worn a little thin. You're a saint if otherwise. The gal in the wheelchair, she's okay. Unless she keeps running over your foot. She's not parked outside your office, waiting for her district's representative, with a sandwichboard reading "ASK ME ABOUT FLUORIDATION" and howling at the top of her lungs that you're an Eastern bloc agent and swatting at you because you idly offered her some Dasani.

6) There's a bit of whistling past the graveyard. Remember how, when you were a kid, you were fascinated for a whole week by all of those postal marks on the backs of envelopes that your parents got? What did they mean? Imagine if that fascination never went away. And evolved. And you had theories as to what those numbers meant. People would like to distance themselves from mental illness by saying, "Ha ha, crazy person, glad I'm not crazy!" A little too loudly, if only to themselves.

7) Humans are sometimes entranced by the workings of other minds, to a degree proportional to the difficulty one has in developing a working model of that mind. An interesting new mental illness often leaves people "fascinated" by it. And, as we learn things, the new connections often make us laugh - which has at least some precedent for a theory of humor.

8) Most people would rather laugh than cry.

Note: you asked, and I am absolutely positively right about these explanations. I've tried to spread the word, but They won't let me debate the Vice-President on local cable access because then the TRUTH would get out. All of my letters to the editors have been rejected, and if you'd just take the time to listen and cast off your preconceived notions, you'd understand how you've been controlled by thinking otherwise.
posted by adipocere at 2:17 PM on July 8, 2008 [39 favorites]


This is the best part. "She has since, mysteriously, refused to see me."
posted by Liosliath at 2:25 PM on July 8, 2008


I appreciate those reasons and I agree with some of them. However, if I were walking down the street with a friend and we passed a homeless person muttering to himself about diseases and conspiracies and whatnot and my friend started to repeat what that person was saying and make fun of him, then I would think that my friend was being a dick and I would tell him that I don't believe that making fun of those with mental illnesses is any funnier than making fun of a person with cancer. The only difference is that in this situation all parties have internet access.
posted by ND¢ at 2:27 PM on July 8, 2008 [3 favorites]


Why do we make fun of people with mental illnesses? We wouldn't post the website of someone with a physical disability and say "Ha! Look at the pictures of her in her wheelchair! Lol!" but we do this regularly with people with mental illnesses. It is probably hard on this person to have these delusions and this paranoia. It is probably hard on his or her family. I know a lot of people enjoy the batshitinsane posts, but it just seems wrong to me.

We need more, IMO. We don't make fun of people with mental illnesses as often as we really should. Not by half.

We far too often give the loony guy on the corner a pass, when the reality is he is likely afflicted by a clinical condition. A likely treatable clinical condition, given the current breakthroughs in drug therapy.

OK, outright scorn is unwarranted, I'll give you that. But let's at least recognize it for what it is and not wave hands about what his family thinks. Because his family likely doesn't recognize it, which is why it happens at all.

That said, the guy with the physical disability is not contagious. On the other hand, the guy with the loony conspiracy theories has loony ideas that are contagious and can do real harm. If scorn is conspiracy disinfectant, get me some more scorn!
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 2:28 PM on July 8, 2008


Let me clarify ...

However, if I were walking down the street with a friend and we passed a homeless person muttering to himself about diseases and conspiracies and whatnot and my friend started to repeat what that person was saying and make fun of him, then I would think that my friend was being a dick

I'd probably think my friend was being a dick, too.

On the other hand, if I pointed at the muttering street person and said to my friend, "That fucker is CRAZY," and he said, "Hey, don't make fun of him! You'll hurt his feelings and the feelings of his friends," my response would be, "Good! They need to know that he's CRAZY but he can probably be helped."
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 2:33 PM on July 8, 2008


Many of you people have been to Heathrow Airport, right? I'm sure you then can understand why this woman lost her mind the moment she set foot in there.

Hmm, this thread seems like an appropriate place to link to my current obsession, yvettesbridalformal.com.

Yarch. That site violates two of my senses. I'm glad that web technology doesn't yet extend to the other three.
posted by randomination at 2:35 PM on July 8, 2008


I'm not saying that I think that we are going to hurt her feelings or the feelings of her friends. I am saying that I think that making fun of sick people is fucked up.
posted by ND¢ at 2:37 PM on July 8, 2008 [4 favorites]


I've had more than my share of brushes with people, including close family and friends, with serious mental illness and I've also still bugged out on and laughed at the amazing torrents of bizarre prose and frankly incredible ideas and adventures that come out of them and yet I'd say it's 50/50 whether or not I'd bust one of you in the fucking snotbox if you carried on like this in front of me about someone who is mentally ill. Ain't life funny?
posted by Divine_Wino at 2:38 PM on July 8, 2008 [3 favorites]


It's fascinating to watch the mentally ill mind at work, anyone whose ever worked in mental health can tell you a million stories. Sometimes the product is so totally absurd and hilarious that you wish you wouldn't laugh at but you can't help yourself. I had a client who carried around a pen when he was decomp-ing and would talk into it like a microphone. He would hold it up by his shoulder, turn his head and whisper into it, like he was dictating super-secret notes for later transcription about his delusional, obsessive plan to take over IBM. The first time I saw him do this I was driving and he was in the backseat with another social worker and I was like, "What the fuck is he doing back there," because the guy also had a really bad assault history and I couldn't tell what was in his hand. She was like, "He's...he's, talking into a pen." He looked so furtive and serious that we could barely contain ourselves and when we got back to the office totally cracked the fuck up over it. I don't know what to say except that we laughed a lot on that job, we had to.
posted by The Straightener at 2:38 PM on July 8, 2008 [6 favorites]


I am currently occupying myself with watching the DVD, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. It is my understanding this is the first of the series by its author.

I am not watching it to entertain you, but rather to research the nature of the poisons they injected into my asthma inhaler at London, England's Heathrow Airport. The author would like you to believe these works are products of her imagination. While the characters maybe, the content is not.


I guess that explains it, someone cast a raving madness spell on this poor woman then.
posted by Iosephus at 2:40 PM on July 8, 2008


Between the main post and Yvettes'...

(vigorously massages forehead and temples)
posted by Samizdata at 2:41 PM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


The very best sites, though, are the ones that START OUT batshitinsane, and you read them eagerly because you think you've stumbled upon the next treasure trove of batshitinsaneephemera, but the deeper you get into the labyrinth of links and unholy text, the more the internal consistency starts to take hold, and the more all the citations seem to hold up the arguments (you research a few of the sources cited and they seem legit, wow) and make a sort of sick twisted sense, until finally you cross over into the other side oh dear god

personally an example is egodeath.com (archived) though it's sadly been belly-up for the past few weeks.
posted by naju at 2:42 PM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


Scorn is a really strong word and is nowhere implied in my OP. I may be splitting hairs here, but I'm not making fun of the person or her apparent mental illness. I am making fun of the web site, which is simply fascinating.
posted by desjardins at 2:43 PM on July 8, 2008


She's not parked outside your office, waiting for her district's representative, with a sandwichboard reading "ASK ME ABOUT FLUORIDATION" and howling at the top of her lungs that you're an Eastern bloc agent and swatting at you because you idly offered her some Dasani.

Yeah, unless you've ever worked in Washington D.C.
posted by smoothvirus at 2:48 PM on July 8, 2008


I would like to see how Scientology tackles a person with this mindstate. Just for shits and giggles.

Also, Kofi Anon? There are SO many hilarious misspellings and just, you know, pure grammatical nonsense that my eyes are crossing!
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 2:53 PM on July 8, 2008


This shouldn't be surprising, but it is interesting to note that the author of this webpage is pretty smart as well as being mentally ill. At least, she knows about some things that the average person doesn't. For example, on this page she makes a couple of references to "the missing Hebraic version of Matthew." And, indeed, there is a theory that the gospel of Matthew was originally written in Aramaic, an idea that goes back at least to the 2nd century, and was mentioned by such significant figures as Origen, Irenaeus and Jerome. While her ideas about what an Aramaic proto-Matthew could have contained are obviously baseless, I think it's fascinating that she is aware of this tradition and has made it part of her fantasy. Of course, I'm BibleGuy, so that's what jumped out at me. But it looks like there are plenty of other examples of uncommon knowledge woven into her narrative.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 2:54 PM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


liquid stabilized oxygen - hydrogen peroxide? it is harmful to most bacteria...
posted by nomisxid at 2:59 PM on July 8, 2008


This website is fascinating. But also quite sad.
posted by applemeat at 3:01 PM on July 8, 2008


I may be splitting hairs here

You are. I actually am glad this site was posted, because it was interesting and, yes, funny. It was just a somewhat insensitive way to frame a post.

"Bat. Shit. Insane. Words fail me." is basically saying "OMG look at how frickin' crazy this (person) is." You can't make fun of the symptoms of a disease and say you're not making fun of the disease or the person.

Generally, it seems nice to avoid the 'batshitinsane' tag for people that are, you know, insane. It seems better suited for things like the Bush Administration, and those idiots who attach their lawnchair to a bunch of helium balloons.
posted by skammer at 3:05 PM on July 8, 2008


And just to temper things, I think scorn is a strong word for the post as well. I make fun of shit that I shouldn't all the time. In the past few years I've become more sensitive to this particular topic, though.
posted by skammer at 3:11 PM on July 8, 2008


Generally, it seems nice to avoid the 'batshitinsane' tag for people that are, you know, insane.

It is kind of a fine line though I guess. I mean, you can't stop making fun of everyone because they may be crazy to a certain extent. I just think that when someone is obviously suffering from delusions that it is safe to assume significantly lower their quality of life and the lives of those around them, but don't hurt the public at large, that maybe it would be nicer not to point and laugh at them. That is just my two cents and I don't mean to ruin people's fun or imply that I think that you mean this person any harm, because I am sure you don't.
posted by ND¢ at 3:17 PM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


A little diggin produced this nugget:

"On another subject...

If I understand the news correctly, Saddam Hussein was executed. I think we should express our condolences to his son, Qusai, as he lives so conveniently close to us.

Bearing in mind that he and his wife, Lani, are privately practicing Jews, please select your cards accordingly. And please ask if Terry, the Rector, is going to have a memorial service."

posted by mr_crash_davis at 3:20 PM on July 8, 2008


"I would like to see how Scientology tackles a person with this mindstate. Just for shits and giggles."

30 Rock Season 1 Episode 17, where Tracy Morgan is shopping for a religion and has already gotten turned down by the Church of Practicology. The clip doesn't seem to be on YouTube, but the look of horror on the Auditor's face as Tracy lists all of the crazy ass shit he believes in, is fabulous.
posted by OmieWise at 3:34 PM on July 8, 2008


skammer: thanks for putting it that way. I guess I'm used to folks misunderstanding mental illness and slide right over that sort of thing and go on to forming (and expressing) my own thoughts, and, in this case, maybe shouldn't have.
posted by batmonkey at 3:39 PM on July 8, 2008


Reminds me, for some reason, of Hybrid.
posted by jbickers at 3:39 PM on July 8, 2008


(should have previewed)

For what it's worth, ND¢, I'm with you on that and now feel like I should have made anti-poking-fun part of recording my first impressions.
posted by batmonkey at 3:42 PM on July 8, 2008


On the other hand, if I pointed at the muttering street person and said to my friend, "That fucker is CRAZY," and he said, "Hey, don't make fun of him! You'll hurt his feelings and the feelings of his friends," my response would be, "Good! They need to know that he's CRAZY but he can probably be helped."
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 5:33 PM on July 8 [+] [!]

You can't be serious, right? This is as disingenuous as folks who claim that mocking "fatties" in public will prompt them to finally go ahead and lose that weight. Fat people know they're fat; and crazy folks' families--if they're even still in the picture--are aware of severe mental illness on this scale as well. Public mockery and shaming the mentally ill doesn't push them closer to treatment--it pushes them out further on the fringes.

May you never have a parent who loses it with Alzheimers, or a beloved child who snaps at 24.
posted by availablelight at 3:45 PM on July 8, 2008 [4 favorites]



On the other hand, if I pointed at the muttering street person and said to my friend, "That fucker is CRAZY," and he said, "Hey, don't make fun of him! You'll hurt his feelings and the feelings of his friends," my response would be, "Good! They need to know that he's CRAZY but he can probably be helped."



Here's what must be going on in your head:

Person displays symptoms of mental illness ->
You make fun of them ->
They and their loved ones realize that mental illness can be treated and are suddenly motivated and able to seek that treatment.


Here is reality:

Person displays symptoms of mental illness ->
You make fun of them ->
You feel superior for showing them what's what ->
They have no additional resources, information, or assistance. But they do know one more joke about tinfoil hats!
posted by sondrialiac at 3:51 PM on July 8, 2008 [9 favorites]


The Straightener: I don't know what to say except that we laughed a lot on that job, we had to.

Current mental health professional here. I was just laughing really, really hard with our nurse and our psychiatrist over one of our patients. It's hard to resist. I, personally, am fascinated with reading what untreated paranoid schizophrenics write. I have letters I've received that I keep to illustrate the level of disfunction that schizophrenia causes. So I understand fascination. I understand laughter.

But some of the point-and-laugh reaction bothers me. Because this is a very sad case. It's someone who needs help. It's someone who wouldn't be this crazy if they would take the right medication. Too often family members, friends, and the general public are too uneducated about mental illness to realize that it could be as simple as "Take this pill once per day" and this could STOP. Many times a person would never have gotten this bad without a lot of people ignoring the signs and not doing anything to help.

So, yeah, it makes me sad.
posted by threeturtles at 3:52 PM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


At one point during my employment in the pharmacy, I commented that I was hungry for a salami sandwich. The pregnant pharmacist then yelled across the pharmacy, "So no wonder you are bloated." I angrily promised to diet. She changed her attitude. She acquired the salami sandwich for me as she combined my order with hers so we had an order large enough for the deli to deliver.
posted by lukievan at 3:56 PM on July 8, 2008


"Making fun of" and "being needlessly cruel" are not necessarily the same thing. It's public fucking website for fuck sake. And it it's funny. Lighten up.
posted by tkchrist at 4:04 PM on July 8, 2008


May you never have a parent who loses it with Alzheimers

You know my grandfather and father in law BOTH died of Alzheimers. And I sorry to tell you this but both of those crazy old farts would be first to laugh at the crazy shit they would do. Sometimes you just have to laugh.
posted by tkchrist at 4:07 PM on July 8, 2008


On September 12, 1997, I had a court date in which Princess Diana was going to formally appear. [...] It had to do with a fact of my life I have experienced since I was seven-years-old in that there is always someone who tries to steal my writing.

Yeah, that's what I was thinking, too.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 4:20 PM on July 8, 2008


10:20 pm EST

Dear Ms. You-Know-Who-You-Are;
You have until midnight Eastern-Standard-Time to turn yourself into the FBI and explain:
WHO sent you to poison my Pepsi last night,
WHAT the poison was,
WHERE you are from,
WHEN you received the assignment &
HOW MUCH you were paid.
And the next time you trespass into my bedroom, I will spit my disease into your eyes.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 4:20 PM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


I have a family member with unequivocal, not-Aspergers autism, and is had been a very long road for the father of that child. We do everything we can to support them. That said, that child says some funny-ass shit.

I reject the idea that you cannot acknowledge the gravity of mental illness and simultaneously find humor in some of its expressions. The linked site is sad, and parts of it are really kind of funny.
posted by everichon at 4:22 PM on July 8, 2008 [4 favorites]


So if I make fun of your clothes, I'm not making fun of you?
posted by mecran01 at 4:24 PM on July 8, 2008


Does anyone really think you can logic the funny away?
posted by smackfu at 4:26 PM on July 8, 2008 [2 favorites]


For me it all stopped being funy when she started posting the names and phone numbers of real people, when she went detail about being evicted from her home, and when she described in detail how the FBI had raped her.

Not much funny there.
posted by Ragma at 4:28 PM on July 8, 2008



I appreciate those reasons and I agree with some of them. However, if I were walking down the street with a friend and we passed a homeless person muttering to himself about diseases and conspiracies and whatnot and my friend started to repeat what that person was saying and make fun of him, then I would think that my friend was being a dick and I would tell him that I don't believe that making fun of those with mental illnesses is any funnier than making fun of a person with cancer. The only difference is that in this situation all parties have internet access.

This is called mocking. And mocking anybody, crazy or not, in their presence is rude in the extreme.

But depending on what the guy was saying and how he was saying. Sure. I might laugh.

Out of earshot I might say something like "He's right. Imbibing essence of Gelfling will indeed lead to immortality."

Once when my wife and I were heading out of town on vacation we got in one of those pre-vacation stress arguments. It was 5am. As we were at a stop light bickering over who packed what a shirtless homeless dude strode out into the cross walk in front of us. He was impossibly lanky and tall. He stopped right at the grill of the car very dramatically. this put a halt to our argument entirely. And then suddenly he put a velvet Crown Royal bag on his head so it stuck straight up. And he began to dance like spoon in a blender. And without warning or pause he ran break neck out the cross walk and disappeared.

Yeah. We laughed. Because it was funny. He was homeless. Altered. Likely crazy. And he was also funny as hell.

And you know when my buddy Scott had brain cancer we made fun of him. But I've told that story.

Anyway people. It's about context.
posted by tkchrist at 4:28 PM on July 8, 2008


May you never have a parent who loses it with Alzheimers, or a beloved child who snaps at 24.

One of my son's is autistic, does that count?

If a parent tried to tell me that their disconnected, eye-contact-avoiding, hand-flapping, toe-walking, scream-when-you-hug-them love of their life was merely "unique" or "creative" or an "old soul" (paging Jenny McCarthy...), I'd want to have a little talk with them, mmm-kay?
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 4:28 PM on July 8, 2008


You know my grandfather and father in law BOTH died of Alzheimers. And I sorry to tell you this but both of those crazy old farts would be first to laugh at the crazy shit they would do. Sometimes you just have to laugh.

I agree, especially when it comes to caretakers and family members.

I am a member of a mood disorders support forum. I was complaining to my partner at length about strange and irrational behavior from a few regular posters.

He put his hand over his mouth in shock and said "Oh my god...do you think that they might be crazy?"


Although that is one of my favorite memories of my marriage, I would feel differently if it were someone with no connection to the board reading the posts and mocking our community.
posted by sondrialiac at 4:31 PM on July 8, 2008 [2 favorites]


If a parent tried to tell me that their disconnected, eye-contact-avoiding, hand-flapping, toe-walking, scream-when-you-hug-them love of their life was merely "unique" or "creative" or an "old soul" (paging Jenny McCarthy...), I'd want to have a little talk with them, mmm-kay?

Okay, how about you imagine that someone walked up to you and your son and made a joke about him to your face? How would that encourage you to get your son treatment?
posted by sondrialiac at 4:34 PM on July 8, 2008


Okay, how about you imagine that someone walked up to you and your son and made a joke about him to your face? How would that encourage you to get your son treatment?

Personally I would punch them in the face.

But nobody here is doing anything remotely like that.
posted by tkchrist at 4:36 PM on July 8, 2008


How would that encourage you to get your son treatment?

By letting me know that we still need more work on developing appropriate social behaviors.

you'd think that was obvious...

The people you should watch out for are the self-righteous types. "This is who I am and goddamit, you WILL show respect for me!"

You guys seem to think everyone has the right to go through life without being offended, and that no one, ever, should have any kind of shame or self-conscious feelings.

But whatever, that wasn't my original point. Thanks for the derail.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 4:54 PM on July 8, 2008


I mean, you can't stop making fun of everyone because they may be crazy to a certain extent.

Meh.

I completely agree that if someone with a psychiatric illness is simply walking down the street, mocking them for displaying the symptoms of their illness is a complete dick move.

However, if someone with a psychiatric condition is sufficiently well enough to choose to self-publish their batshit insanity on the internet, then their ideas are just as deserving as mockery as anyone else's are.

Just because someone has a mental illness, that doesn't mean that they want to be wrapped up in cotton wool. On the contrary, it looks to me that this woman is posting her thoughts on the internet precisely because she wants people to engage with them.

The fact that she has a mental illness doesn't make her a complete invalid, or a leper. Responding honestly to her thoughts and arguments seems to me to be treating her as an equal, and that's precisely what everybody I've ever known who suffers from a mental illness claims to want.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 4:56 PM on July 8, 2008 [3 favorites]


I am extraordinarily interested in what scientists call "psychoceramics" -- they tend to receive missives from the mentally ill who have crucial theories to impart, and the unkind nickname sprang up. I don't laugh, per se.*

I'm just endlessly fascinated by the way the words break up, the concepts almost make sense, but never quite. And why is the handwriting (when it's written) all the same? These desperate, crowding block capitals, attempting to bear all the information that they possibly can, augmented by underlining and bizarre punctuation. If it's wrong to stare, I have to confess I'm wrong for it.

___
* Okay, I laughed at this, but I don't know if she's actually mentally ill, or just skipped science class on optics day.
posted by Countess Elena at 5:00 PM on July 8, 2008 [4 favorites]


Personally I would punch them in the face.

But nobody here is doing anything remotely like that.


I understand that, but Cool Papa Bell is making the argument that such behavior would somehow help the mentally ill or their family. I, of course, disagree.
posted by sondrialiac at 5:02 PM on July 8, 2008


The woman I refer to as "My Crazy Ex" went from mildly delusional but fully functional to bat-shit insane and a danger to herself and others in the 15 years we were together. No medication ever improved her condition, and she tried everything. She was never without professional counseling and at one point I reluctantly made her change counselors because the one she was seeing was too 'enabling'. At times, I was too enabling and once joined a Co-dependents Group to try to learn how to improve my part of the relationship only to find that its main purpose was to get its member OUT of their relationships. She was a delightful person to be with when she was lucid, and sometimes when she was acting crazy. I guess I should have just pointed and laughed at her more.

and I could never get her interested in the Internet... oh, she could've been a web superstar.
posted by wendell at 5:06 PM on July 8, 2008


Look at how serious the TimeCube guy is; his claims are without self-doubt as they are inflated. He knows how wrong everyone else is. We mock people who are that annoying, whether or not they have a mental illness. Being not wrong, but willfully fixated on how you alone have found The Truth - that leads to hilarity.

Sounds like the people over in the "OMG kicked out of the town hall meeting." Without a doubt, it was McCain himself who had the woman expelled, without a doubt her first amendment rights were violated, without a doubt he's a reptilian overlord, etcetera, etcetera.
posted by five fresh fish at 5:06 PM on July 8, 2008


* Okay, I laughed at this , but I don't know if she's actually mentally ill, or just skipped science class on optics day.

Read the comments and I think the answer becomes clear.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 5:17 PM on July 8, 2008


Not much crazier than many first-person blogs. Maybe Moe and "Slut Machine" could adapt this for Cory Doctorow's blog.
posted by orthogonality at 5:23 PM on July 8, 2008


We need an amendment decreeing this instrument applicable to issues of male impotence. I am certain that my story is one of many.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 6:17 PM on July 8, 2008


In much the same vein, and also from Reddit: 666 is Money.
posted by five fresh fish at 6:33 PM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


That's a really nice example of type, Countess Elena. Environment, health and energy research, this is the triple crown of scienteriffic crackpottery.
posted by bonehead at 7:05 PM on July 8, 2008


What a way to end a piece of writing: "I hope the next time I talk to you will be after I receive the only anti-biotic which crosses the brain barrier."
posted by jayder at 8:53 PM on July 8, 2008


From the page:

I now work at a vitamin store where I met a chiropractor. She offered to help me. I went in for one session and experienced a great improvement.
She has since, mysteriously, refused to see me.


Not so mysterious, really.
posted by davejay at 9:34 PM on July 8, 2008


I'd much prefer we left the mentally ill off the blue, please.
posted by chairface at 10:08 PM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


We'd lose half our users if we did that, chairface. The mentally ill are what makes this place tick.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:34 PM on July 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


This is called mocking. And mocking anybody, crazy or not, in their presence is rude in the extreme.

You don't think a person capable of registering a domain and putting together a site from scratch is capable of checking her referrer logs? Or that given that Metafilter is such a widely trafficked site, it could end up linked somewhere that she or her family might see it?

Threads like these are not just tasteless, they serve a good chance of hurting already suffering people that much more. They should have no place here.
posted by melissa may at 11:18 PM on July 8, 2008 [3 favorites]


Assuming the letters are from the web site author's family, the author is also an artist, a good one. His family and family background is very familiar to me -- New England, active, do-gooder-y, Unitarian.

The ranty stuff is part of this person, a sometimes wacky/funny part, but it is not all of this person.
posted by ClaudiaCenter at 11:38 PM on July 8, 2008


Huh? Unless I missed quite a lot the author of the site is a woman. This woman, I think.
posted by puke & cry at 11:51 PM on July 8, 2008


You're right, I was focusing on the family letters under "Eva Braun." There is some connection between Vivian and Kevin (the artist, and the Kevin in the family letters), but you're right the site author is Vivian.
posted by ClaudiaCenter at 12:07 AM on July 9, 2008


Thank you for posting this. I can't imagine going through life orthogonal to reality, so it is fascinating and heartbreaking to read this woman's blog. I hope she receives treatment.

We have someone that lives locally in a similar situation, but instead of a blog she writes her rants on her house, roof, and car. A blog is a much safer medium for ranting.

Some mentally ill people retreat into themselves, while others are compelled to share their illness with the world. When I taught high school journalism ~20 years ago, the student newspaper received some letters to the editor from a cranky and in retrospect delusional adult with no other connection to the school. He was neither a parent nor a former student, just a "concerned citizen" who wanted to reach out to an audience and "tell them the truth." The letters were filled with paranoid delusions and crackpot conspiracy theories -- "Pearl Harbor was caused by the Jews," etc. Although these letters were ultimately sad, they invariable had their funny, laugh-out-loud moments. It was only on reflection, as you thought about just how ill this person needed to be to believe their version of reality, that empathy won out.
posted by mosk at 1:56 AM on July 9, 2008 [1 favorite]


Borderline personality disorder.

OCD.

Bipolar disorder.

Delusions.
posted by chuckdarwin at 2:44 AM on July 9, 2008


My favorite part about this site (and others like it) is the detailed explanations of everyday events. Something about them makes me happy:

"My employer sent me into a store in a region where I don't usually travel. Guess what I found on the clearance rack? Frames for $1/each. And the receipt printed a $2 coupon off of my next $2 purchase. (I bought shampoo with that.) These frames are 4-inches high and 12-inches wide--very unusual. These are silver-color and of similar character in design to that of the frame I selected for my grandfather with a plaque of his advise. Such large frame is gold and silver. And these small frames included the matting. But it is very thin. The framer explained to me that the purpose for this is not just decoration, but also to prevent the picture from clinging to the glass. Such damage is irreversible.

But the matting does outline for me how each set should be performed. It is in three segments, in a semi-circle. I would have never thought of that. I placed one upside-down, the other correct-side-up in positions above and below him. I intend to one day replace this inexpensive matting with red. And I intend to add a second matting of the same red to the framing of my grandfather. I don't like the black. It looks like a memorial. Someone several generations from now is not going to cry over him, but hopefully, they will follow his advise. I will leave the black as a secondary, interior matting."
posted by scose at 3:18 AM on July 9, 2008


What is interesting and frightening to me is how perilously close a lot of the symptoms of schizophrenia can be to what we generally think of as "normal". For example, we talk a lot about "confirmation bias" here, and it seems to me that so many of the delusions (especially paranoid delusions, perhaps) suffered by schizophrenics have a very close connection with this fairly typical form of ideation. In a short article called "Emerging From Schizophrenia" the author relates:

So now I can look back, and think about what happened. I was acting like a detective who was seeking clues to the conspiracies that I believed were real. I was in a frame of mind where the conspiracies loomed so large that I seized on innocent events as corroboration. An event with many possible interpretations took on only one, sinister interpretation.

I should say that many of my experiences were very realistic, which was one reason why it was so hard to let go of them. I did not hear disembodied voices telling me to do things, and many of my experiences seemed to fit seamlessly into my day.


This is not so very different than many of us who become convinced of a certain idea (political/governmental dirty deeds; efficacy of a certain alternative cure; gender issues) and begin to find constant "proof" that reinforce our beliefs. Sometimes we may be correct, but if we are always looking through the lens of a certain issue that we have strong feelings about, much of what we see as evidence supporting our claim is going to be the result of twisted logic - different to the schizophrenic's delusions only in scale, perhaps.

Most of us are suspicious of a lot that goes on in the world, because we recognize that governments and big business don't usually waste a lot of effort on moral and ethical considerations; we worry about public safety, and our own safety, when the bottom line is the only grail. This isn't crazy. But just magnify those thoughts a bit - or a lot, really, and make them frantic and unremitting, and you are very, very close to the schizophrenic's hell, I imagine. In many ways, it's dreadfully easy to see how almost every observation, incident and coincidence could feed those suspicions and spin them out... because it is so similar to what we ourselves sometimes fall prey to.

So... I have to say that I totally agree with CaseyB: "It's knowing that just a couple of percentage points difference in chemical balance would put anyone in the same position that scares the hell out of me." I think about this every time I see a site like the one posted, or someone on the street who is obviously mentally disturbed. Part of me silently greets them, "Sister..., Brother..."
posted by taz at 3:27 AM on July 9, 2008 [5 favorites]


oops. CaseyB's comment.
posted by taz at 3:31 AM on July 9, 2008


ND¢ said: Why do we make fun of people with mental illnesses? We wouldn't post the website of someone with a physical disability and say "Ha! Look at the pictures of her in her wheelchair! Lol!" but we do this regularly with people with mental illnesses. It is probably hard on this person to have these delusions and this paranoia. It is probably hard on his or her family. I know a lot of people enjoy the batshitinsane posts, but it just seems wrong to me.

Very D¢ of you, sir. I can't favorite it more than once, so I'm quoting it.

It's a good question. Why is mental illness fair game for mockery? Would those of you who laugh at the batshitinsane also laugh in someone's face if they told you they had cancer? Maybe we can come up with a good derisive nickname for cancer patients, and use it as a tag on all future posts about cancer.

They're both illnesses. Why is one appropriate joke material while the other one isn't? Neither the cancer patient nor the paranoid schizophrenic chose their illness.
posted by syzygy at 4:33 AM on July 9, 2008


Certainly a moral conundrum for me. On the one hand I enjoy the LULZ derived from reading these incredible artifacts of human creation, on the other I think it is pretty out of order to simply point and laugh at people who are sharing their delusions with us. Unless they are in government, or rich and powerful, then it's OK.
I would hate for our comments to contribute to any feelings of persecution on the part of the author. Such feelings can lead to events that are impossible to reverse.

I would echo the comments of CaseyB and taz, in that the delusions that are paraded by the likes of these people are not far from those that most of us sustain in order to maintain our sanity.

This is one of the reasons why I think that religious prophets are most likely to have been closer to Kevin and Vivian in their mental state than to a 'normal' individual.
posted by asok at 4:38 AM on July 9, 2008


Non-escalating verbal self defense.

Grand Celestial Do.

If only so that I can bookmark this thread as a meta-bookmark for delusional websites.
posted by asok at 4:47 AM on July 9, 2008


This is not so very different than many of us who become convinced of a certain idea (political/governmental dirty deeds; efficacy of a certain alternative cure; gender issues) and begin to find constant "proof" that reinforce our beliefs.

Indeed, my own thoughts on reading this woman's website is that she doesn't seem to be any more mentally ill than most of the 9/11 truth movement. Both begin with an outlandish idea for which there's very little evidence. Then they massively overemphasize minor anomilies, regardless of how insignificant, and completely ignore evidence that undermines or even falsifies their theory.

Perhaps the truthers are mentally ill as well? While many of them appear to be able to hold down jobs, their need to hold fast to certain beliefs, but when you listen to them trying to justify the reasons why a decisively falsified theory *hasn't* been rebutted, it can be hard to escape the view that they're delusional as well.

Why is one appropriate joke material while the other one isn't?

There's no such thing as 'appropriate joke material'. What you're referring to here is stuff that you don't find funny. The only inappropriate joke material is stuff that isn't funny.

Once you start down this avenue, you end up with no jokes at all because there's always somebody who chooses to be offended, or doesn't personally find something funny.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 5:01 AM on July 9, 2008 [1 favorite]


The only inappropriate joke material is stuff that isn't funny.

Bingo.
posted by grubi at 6:12 AM on July 9, 2008


This site is fascinating. I'm about halfway through the main page, to the part where she's writing scripts based on her aquatic apes book and selling them to Hollywood. It's amazing how this stuff is so creative (poisoned inhalers and assassins in the pharmacy) yet so formulaic (secret offers of marriage from a variety of men, dandelion root) at the same time.

My go-to source for batshit insane: Educate Yourself. The Don and Carol Croft saga is the choice stuff there.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 7:06 AM on July 9, 2008 [1 favorite]


This just made me very sad. A close family friend died of CJD, and honestly, I don't think I know a more horrible way to die. He went from "huh, where'd I put my keys again?" to paranoid ranting, to a glassy-eyed, bedridden, incontinent near-ghost in six weeks. Strange that she picked this disease for a focus.
posted by desuetude at 7:42 AM on July 9, 2008


"He diagnosed my condition of abdominal swelling as excess body fat and instructed me to go on a diet."

That's just crazy talk.
posted by yeti at 7:48 AM on July 9, 2008


After updating her site every few days, she hasn't had a single update since May 25th. After eviction, how long could she stay at a Motel 6 making $12/hour? :(
posted by yeti at 8:48 AM on July 9, 2008


Dude, spoiler alert! I'm only on her conflict with a new department manager at the Taylor Shop. Prince William is just standing by and letting it happen, that cad.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 8:55 AM on July 9, 2008


The reason that we don't laugh at cancer is because it isn't funny. Sometimes people who have/had cancer are funny - Gilda Radner comes to mind - but the cancer itself is not what we are laughing at. HAHAHA look at that tumor makes no sense.
posted by desjardins at 10:13 AM on July 9, 2008


After updating her site every few days, she hasn't had a single update since May 25th. After eviction, how long could she stay at a Motel 6 making $12/hour? :(

In fact, she has continued to update her webpage.
posted by prefpara at 10:46 AM on July 9, 2008


You know she could easily copy and paste the top of this page and keep looping it over and over again. I really don't think another would notice at all. Wow but this is some seriously bat shit insane rambling. I can't begin to say what is wrong with her. She could easily be a batman villain.
posted by Mastercheddaar at 10:53 AM on July 9, 2008


The more I read this the more sense it all makes.

It occurs to me that this is not a good thing.
posted by Ragma at 12:45 PM on July 9, 2008


Oh my, between this post and the others linked in here, I'm about to lose days and days of my life.

Like others, I get drawn into these things, marvel at the internal logic and creative beauty and crazy humanity of it all, and don't come out until I notice the sun is coming up. Again.

This craziness, this irrational connection of scattered bits of things we half remember, this mad-scientist construction into an epic that makes sense to only ourselves... this is deep inside everyone. We all carry this.

We all carry this, that is, if only in our own minds, and maybe it only surfaces for a moment when drunk, or very angry, or half-asleep. It's just not often so sustained and externalized and allowed to grow out of control, and that's what I see as the incredible.... art that these websites represent.
posted by rokusan at 1:27 PM on July 9, 2008 [1 favorite]


(In other words no matter what you intended when you posted it, desjardins.... thanks.)
posted by rokusan at 1:28 PM on July 9, 2008


One of the interesting parts of this is that she's obviously being totally sarcastic and jokey with much it. And I find it interesting how easy it is to lose focus on which is which. If I say, "Maybe I should take President Shrub aside and explain why ignoring the Geneva Convention is a bad idea", we know I'm not being literal and it's obviously a casual joke. If she says that same thing we're not so sure.

She seems to drift in and out of crazy so much that it could be a joke one day and totally serious the next.

Upthread I was in the "funny" camp. But I haven't found any of this funny in the last few hours of reading. Maybe someone with more balls than I have will try to find out if anyone can help her. Obviously she has no problem with taking medication, even if it all seems to be self medication at the moment.
posted by Ragma at 2:12 PM on July 9, 2008


Sad, yes, funny, yes.

Groucho Marx once quipped, "...An amateur thinks it's really funny if you dress a man up as an old lady, put him in a wheelchair, and give the wheelchair a push that sends it spinning down a slope towards a stone wall. For a pro, it's got to be a real old lady."

That's the essence of humor, it's seriousness. If this wasn't tragic, it wouldn't be funny. Not to mention that people can laugh, and still care. There's a difference between laughing at what is funny, and true, callous mockery. Seems to me that people are picking out the funny parts and pointing them out, not truly mocking her.

There is an archive of what used to be called the tard blog, posted here. It's achingly funny. But the important part is that for all the weariness and occasional cynicism, it's not mockery. Cop humor, nurse humor, gallows humor, dark humor, sure, but not mockery.

Some folks fail to see the distinction, I guess.
posted by Xoebe at 5:59 PM on July 9, 2008 [2 favorites]


You don't think a person capable of registering a domain and putting together a site from scratch is capable of checking her referrer logs?

No. I don't think she will ever do that. Not unless you or somebody here emailed her and told her.

Now THAT would be an asshole thing to do.

Or that given that Metafilter is such a widely trafficked site, it could end up linked somewhere that she or her family might see it?

And? They could also go to her frigg'n site, too. I'm pretty sure that says everything we have. Only with more layers of crazy on it.

By this logic we should never post anything by anybody. After all there are a bunch of assholes on this site who say awful insulting things all the time to just about anybody for pretty much no reason.

Or. I guess we only make exceptions to our "humor" for people we do our "Bill Frist Remote Control Diagnosis" and determine magically they suffer from a medical problem.
posted by tkchrist at 6:33 PM on July 9, 2008


They're both illnesses. Why is one appropriate joke material while the other one isn't? Neither the cancer patient nor the paranoid schizophrenic chose their illness.
posted by syzygy at 7:33 AM


Because only one of them is funny. Deciding that it's "not right" to laugh or make fun of someone such as this is just fine, if you don't mind being an uptight drag. Acting like you don't see what is funny about it is completely disingenuous. Someone who recognizes that it is funny and is then comfortable laughing at that which he finds funny is in a far superior moral position than that which you're subscribing to.

I find it hard to believe anyone who read through that site didn't at some point laugh. I'd also find it hard to believe if their heart didn't ache at certain points, both for her and those whom her delusions have persecuted or otherwise enveloped. It's certainly a sad situation all around and it's not hard to find plenty to sympathize with. It's also all thoroughly engrossing stuff, both as a broad overview of how all these delusions and events in her life interconnect, and in how there are moments of clear insight sprinkled about.
posted by rob paxon at 10:46 PM on July 9, 2008


You don't think a person capable of registering a domain and putting together a site from scratch is capable of checking her referrer logs?

No. I don't think she will ever do that.


Yeah, I mean, it's not like she's paranoid or anything.


Someone who recognizes that it is funny and is then comfortable laughing at that which he finds funny is in a far superior moral position than that which you're subscribing to.

Tell me more about this superior moral position.
posted by sondrialiac at 9:11 AM on July 10, 2008


rob paxon: Deciding that it's "not right" to laugh or make fun of someone such as this is just fine, if you don't mind being an uptight drag. Acting like you don't see what is funny about it is completely disingenuous. Someone who recognizes that it is funny and is then comfortable laughing at that which he finds funny is in a far superior moral position than that which you're subscribing to.

I don't see anything funny about about her illness, rob. I'm still not sure why mental illness is funny when just about every other kind of illness isn't.

I spent another 20 minutes reading through the site, and I laughed twice - once at a witty comment of hers, and once imagining the look on Mr. Saurez' face during their phone call.

But I don't see a whole lot of humor there. I think that indicates that I have a mature understanding of and concern for the seriously ill, whether their illness affects them primarily from the neck up, or from the neck down. If that makes me an uptight drag, I can live with it.
posted by syzygy at 11:34 AM on July 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


Offtopic, but from the "Eva Braun" family letters:
We especially hope that war will be avoided, being convinced of the extreme foolishness of wasting vast quantities of oil, and young people's lives, to fight for oil.
Then you read the context and see they're talking about the 1991 Gulf War.

All of this has happened before, and all of it will happen again.
posted by vsync at 12:35 PM on July 11, 2008


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