Morning at Spider Rock

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Checking out

For some reason, suicide has been on my mind lately. Not my own, just the subject in general. I have been suffering a normal, seasonal winter depression but think that I would lean more to homicide in any case. Friend told me to try full spectrum light bulbs and that it might be all the christmas music. Yes, thank god that's over.

Anyhow, you can't pick up a paper without reading about someone offing themselves and their loving family members these days, one in a Santa suit no less last week, I confess I couldn't even look at that one. There are many causes for depression that I suppose could lead one to want to check out, the pain stemming from an inability to take care of your flock I would think would rank the very highest on the list.

We do a piss poor job talking about death in our culture and have an even greater phobia about discussing relatively healthy people taking their own life. I lost a good friend two years ago, a man who possessed wealth beyond estimation. He got depressed. The shrinks called it an agitated depression. He was looking four years down the road and saw trouble ahead for his business, real or imagined.

He didn't feel that he had the strength to fight against whatever he saw coming. You could say that he was wrong, or selfish, or even delusional but I think that I know what my friend was going through. As delusional as it might be, however things would have ultimately worked out, it was very real for him. And I love and miss him no matter if his fears were founded or crafted out of thin air. We all feel pain differently and we all have a different threshold of just how much we can stand.

Writers seem to like to take themselves out of the picture, why is that? Plath, Brautigan, Mishima, Koestler, way back to Petronius even. I found a master list, I am sure that there are a few missing. Dentists and vets are right up there too. But why writers out of all the practitioners of the arts? Why not painters, or potters, or decoupage artists? Whittlers or cinematographers? Poets and scribes. Is the level of raw emotion, of naked vulnerability, more present for a wordsmith? Or did it just become the trendy thing to do? The old Spalding Gray number. Very bizarre. I couldn't kill myself. Bloggers without a publishing deal carry no literary cachet, even while resting in their final repose.

Had a neighbor in Rainbow give himself a custom dirt nap many years ago. Gene, our neighbor and an ex cop, thought that the least the guy could have done was take it outside, he was quite repulsed that anyone would make their final exit in a bathroom that some loved one would have to clean up. That is selfish. I agree with him. Take it outside. And don't take anyone with you. Or better yet, sleep it off, things will probably look a lot better tomorrow.