Your parents are okay, and only terrible people in swing states are attending Trump rallies. You're more or less at home for two months. What's your best possible quarantine? What's your great novel about? How's your garden? Have you always wanted to create a graphic novel?
Me, I'm torn between things I'd really enjoy but never do - like sewing - and things we've been putting off, like sorting through a bunch of junk and getting rid of stuff.
In reality, I'm sure it will be endless screen time for kids plus going to the park. Board games. Squabbling. But that's not this thread.
I bet, if nothing else, we'll all be very well-rested for a change.
So this is what corner preachers feel like. I'm (virtually) waving my arms and screaming that the tsunami is about to hit us; just sent an email to my kids' school administrators telling them to shut down the schools. THIS SEEMS SO OBVIOUS. You know, like
Christ's redeeming love Allah's infinite mercy Buddha's luscious tummy. Have a link and consider this your novel coronavirus thread.
If it weren't corona-season and primary-season and Brexit-season and everything else under the sun, I probably would have heard about This Ohio State scandal where the doctor for the wrestlers sexually assaulted 177+ of them, before it got to the point where Ohio congressshit Jim Jordan is significantly implicated in the coverup:
In January 1993, Yetts said, he went to Strauss after he injured his thumb in practice. During the examination, the doctor tried to remove his wrestling shorts. "I said, 'Doc, it's my damn thumb.' So I literally got up off the table, turned around and busted through the door," Yetts said. Yetts said he came out and complained to Jordan and other wrestlers about what happened. He said Jordan responded by saying something like, "If he tried that on me, I would kill him."
In a lawsuit filed last year, a wrestling referee alleged Strauss masturbated in front of him inside a locker-room shower in the mid-1990s, and that when he reported the incident to then-coaches Jordan and Hellickson, they responded, "Yeah, that's Strauss," and did not take further action.
Surely the other Republicans will hold him accountable.
NickS writes: This is a fascinating story.
"Hollywood is predominantly White," says [Nina Yang] Bongiovi, who is Chinese American. "I'm in my own bubble where I work with so many artists of color. When I get out of that bubble at certain meetings, at agencies, that's when I go, 'Oh wait, Hollywood is really White,' and I forget that we're only the 10%. I love the fact that we are one of the few production companies that do this."
She is personable yet blunt with the next set of facts.
"Fruitvale was turned down by everybody in town," she says. "It's my Chinese American friends who funded it. Same with Roxane and Sorry to Bother You. That financing was all my friends."
It doesn't surprise me that there would be Chinese-Americans with money willing to fund films that are out of sync with the Hollywood process but it really interesting that she's found so much success with movies connected to the African-American experience (working with Forest Whitaker).
Heebie's take: I agree that it's a good read (and not very long). We had a good conversation here last summer about STBY, IIRC.
I have a small thing I feel like sharing as a resource and then I'm going to splat about my situation, which will maybe be engaging, and maybe also will net some good advice, since there's a lot of accumulated experience here with school, mood disorders, and their intersection. I don't even know that I have a specific question. I just want to describe my situation and see what interesting things people might have to say.
I'm just finishing up a month of HelloFresh because they offered that much time at sufficient discount that it became worth it. I would never recommend actually signing up for this service unless all of these things are true of you (which who knows may be some of you):
1) You're not at all price sensitive, since $10 dollars a "serving" (when a serving, for their leaner meals, is about 450 calories, i.e. not a meal for most people), is barely cheaper than delivery (and in contexts like mine is more expensive than walking somewhere to pick something up).
2) You're short on time BUT you highly value the cooking ritual.
3) You're not enough of a food snob that you will be too distressed by the direly anemic roma tomatoes you get, or the inclusion of cheddar and Monterey jack in Mexican food, and related concerns.
However, what I would like to share is that I have really enjoyed a lot of what I cooked, especially the recipes marked "Hall of Fame", and they're all available online. Their "active time" estimates are bs, but their total time estimates are not far off, maybe just right if you're more efficient than I, and it's an excellent repository of meals that really are curated for being easy and having short lists of ingredients that aren't hard to find. I cooked this yesterday and it was delicious. I guess I should note that I've only tried their vegetarian recipes. Also they don't tend to be food that keeps well for leftovers, especially if you fully assemble them, although a little bit of thinking about how to store separate components might make them more storable.
I feel like supermarkets should start getting into the meal kit thing. They have all the ingredients right there! They could assemble them on demand and/or it would be so easy to return the unused ingredients to the shelves.
Ask below the fold, with a content note for a late in the post discussion of suicidality. I hope it goes without saying that if I write about a bunch of stuff that's painful for me every last commenter should do their best not to be a prick and if you are a commenter I've recently called a troll you should not comment under any pseud.
My mood has been deteriorating since the beginning of the year, and not totally unrelatedly, as cause and consequence, I just failed an organic chemistry test. I thought it was the first time in my life I'd failed a test but then remembered another occasion, but it's definitely the first test I failed that I studied for.
I've been taking premed classes and I just switched from CUNY #1 to CUNY #2. I've been hoping to become a second degree student and be a biochem major with a bioinformatics concentration, maybe a CS minor too, so if I can't make med school work out I've accomplished something else concrete that will help me in the future. (My only other idea, at this point, is to try to get a well-paying programming job and use that to fund an MSW, and I do have a strong connection at a software company for which the biochem background would be directly relevant, and which, based on the people I've met there, seems like a really nice place to work.) Also it turns out NYS has a program for people with an unemployment claim -- if you're in school to make yourself more employable and can wrap your program up in two years you can get your unemployment benefits extended that long. (My funding at my jobs is winding down so I have a partial unemployment claim right now. If I get approved for this program I can just go to school full time.)
I've already decided that the right tactical move is to take the W in this class, regroup and try to figure out how to address what happened here. It sucks for a number of reasons -- it might endanger my unemployment money, I already have another semester where I fully withdrew with two incompletes on medical leave -- but it's hard to see how I'm going to do better than a C at this point, and given that I got an A in organic chemistry last semester especially if I get myself to work through all of the material in advance of trying this class again, I just think it is on balance better to try to eat the W and post a good grade next time. I still have many semesters to be able to attempt to show medical schools that I can handle a demanding courseload with more than one science class a semester. There's a not totally untrue story I could tell about realizing that with two jobs orgo and bio together were too intense of an attentional demand.
I guess part of my question is: can I? I am really disturbed by the pattern in my response to school stress. There's often some other factor but so it is with life. I withdrew on a medical leave right after the 2016 election. Last fall when I was adjuncting I was diagnosed with PTSD for the first time. That was triggered (I know I'm such a snowflake!) by being fairly deeply involved in an organization with a big sexual abuse scandal, but it was maintained by being freaked out by the demands of teaching. I enrolled in a ketamine study, because it seemed like a cool thing to try, but (as I kind of predicted), my serious mental health problems remitted as soon as I was done teaching. Honestly there's no huge other factor right now. I do feel kind of dumb in that I think I triggered the beginning of this mood episode by going on a little time-limited diet in January. I noticed that being hungry made me feel worse, but I just figured I could afford it and I'd start eating freely when school started. Then I was sleeping with a man for a short while, and even while that was going well I felt like I noticed that a sexual relationship seemed to also result in some mood decrement just associatively. Then I broke up with him and that was sad but not even that bad, in part because I was pretty proactive for about the first time in my life in saying I can see that I am not getting my needs met -- let me cut this off before I am too emotionally invested. It doesn't seem like there's such an obvious external stressor this time, but somehow through some combination of factors* I have failed a test and have been cresting above that 5 of 9 threshold.
But there's no path to licensure that's not through a bunch more schooling. Also I can't ... try to maintain my weight? Have sex? What? I don't want to just shrug and try to make my work life as easy as possible and not worry about whether I am ever licensed. Abundant feedback from lots of sources suggests that I am a gifted clinician, well above replacement by the average person doing this work in the community, and I find a lot of meaning in it. I also don't have a family, and I really like working, and just giving up on doing the work I care about most seems really bleak to me.
I'm going to try to see if I can get on anti-depressants, which I've never done. Fun fact: when you say you don't want to go on anti-depressants you get a bunch of pushback and then as soon as you say you want to start a bunch of people start telling you all the reasons they might not work, which you know, which is among the reasons you've never done it. I'm insured by Medicaid right now which is going to make this process a fun adventure, but at least reducing my work burden for the rest of the semester will give me some energy to deal with it.
Part of why I've never gone on them before is that I have really dramatic mood dips but it's usually pretty hard to for me to sustain a depressed mood long enough for me to evaluate whether an anti-depressant was helping. Even now, as I type this, I feel okay. On Friday night during ballet class my internal narrative was disturbing enough that I couldn't stop myself from crying afterwards, and two of my classmates saw me and were very nice to me, and the bad internal narrative and disinterest in food (that's another big sign for me) sustained itself through the next morning but then I went to bootcamp and the bad internal narrative switched off and I was interested in food again (and made enchiladas). I've accepted that I need to exercise every day, and maybe part of what's happened over the last couple of weeks is that I fell to more like five times a week, but it also seems bonkers, in the same way that both having sex and trying to maintain my weight being forbidden to me seems bonkers, if I have to get that intensity of exercise every day to feel okay. I don't even think my joints can take it.
if there really is a pill that could function prophylactically to prevent these mood dips and help me not lose weeks to mood-exacerbated concentration problems, I am finally at the point where I want to throw anything at the problem. If there's not, to be honest, it's not even clear that I could make it through medical school (or any school) safely, even if I could wave a wand and get in. But medical school would be a particular risk because doing it moves me toward a category of women who are at elevated risk for self harm (and I'm already in another such category by virtue of past work). Having a lot of contact with violation of the body desensitizes you to it. (See Thomas Joiner's work.) I'm already unusually pain tolerant, already relaxed around/interested in dead bodies.
I'm also not sure how the degree to which I flip out about school stress relates to other stress, but I generally feel good/wired after dealing with people in a lot of distress.
So I dunno. That's what's going on. Do you have advice?
* I might analyze these factors at some point in comments but this is already such a long Ask the Mineshaft