The Candid Guide to Wallowing in Despair

    It happens to the best of us; one minute everything is blooming, the birds are singing, random strangers wave and smile back, you help an old lady with her bags, life is just swell. Suddenly clouds form, strangers frown and cuss at you, lightning strikes a nearby tree, falling on the old lady and electrocuting the song birds. You’re falling down the never ending pit of despair as you lose your job, step on a nail, your girlfriend leaves you and you find out your getting audited the next day. It’s times like these when our human intuition kicks in, the proverbial rollover and die. To make the most of your blues requires skill and practice, because if not performed right, the severity and credibility of your situation will not be effective. Throughout history melancholy has been performed and perfected, whether by a mother guilt-tripping her son into visiting her more often, a child pouting to get ice cream and other presents, or emo kids using it for their social status, gloominess can be done by anyone.

    In the olden days wallowing was simple and done usually by crying a lot, never talking (or if anything was said it was usually along the lines of “woe is me”) taking long and lonely walks in the garden when you weren’t immobile in bed for most of the day, or staring out at the grey, salty sea. While today these all still hold true, society, and life in general have gotten more complicated, and so depression requires a change to all aspect’s of your life, every daily habit you have, every communication, even the food you eat will be affected.

    Start off with a complete mental, physical and emotional meltdown. You can no longer move, think, speak, act or react. This step is crucial as a precedent to the torpidity that follows. It is important not to leave the confines of your domicile, or if forced outside, let it be begrudgingly. When visitors arrive, give them the full show, do not make eye contact, stare out into the open with red, tearful eyes, blow your nose repeatedly and toss the tissues on the ground, there should already be a plethora of garbage strewn about including empty ice cream bins, liquor bottles, Chinese takeout cartons (do not under any circumstances cook) and more tissues. The curtains should be closed, the air should smell of must and the entire house should not have been cleaned since your breakdown. The TV should be running 24/7 on infomercials, while you watch haphazardly, eating the rest of the ice cream. Work is obviously not an option, call in sick, don’t answer the phone, and if you feel some need to communicate, write it in your diary. As for your appearance night robe or pajamas are a must, as well as an unshaven and unwashed body (being smelly will make everyone even more eager to quickly resolve your problems).

    Your visitors, be they family or friends will be the ones to clean up and take care of almost everything, they need to witness the worst of your distress for them to be sympathetic and not accuse you of self-pitying or force you outside (where everything you see and encounter will remind you of why you were so blue in the first place).

    Once enough time has passed, you should give the impression that you were cured by your own volition, that although it was hard, you decided to pull through. Your friends and family will be grateful and admire you. By the end of it all you should come out a better person (at least in the eyes of others), thank those that helped you, and take a good shower.

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Mini Candid #11

Mini-candids are small Candid Guides updated more frequently than the main guide. They can be video, photo, or just one or two sentences.

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