Category: Science

I need lithium for my political mood swings

I’m really eff’ing cranky right now.

Every six months I go see my psychiatrist, who asks me if I want more antidepressants, and every six months I tell her no. When I was there a few weeks ago, my answer was the same. I don’t believe my bad mood is a biological issue, but rather circumstantial. Not that I’m denying being one of those cursed artistic personalities, with a brain as sensitive as it is curious, acting like a seismograph strapped onto the head of a woodpecker. No, that’s not right. A sea sponge covered with taste buds? No . . .

“Lemme just get more exercise,” I tell her, winding down our appointment. She asks me if there’s anything else.

kleenex-boxAlmost as an afterthought I say, “It’s been really hard since the election.” And then out of nowhere, tears well up in my eyes. I struggle to elaborate, but she remains quiet. “Wow, I didn’t expect this,” I say, reaching for a Kleenex.

“You’re not alone,” she tells me. “Everyone’s affected. All of my patients. I’m affected, too.”

Not that she’s suggesting lithium. That would imply that I get the manic highs of bipolar people. Instead it’s just a rotten mood interjected with the occasional sigh of relief when one of Trump’s stupid bills or Executive Orders is shot down. It looks a little like this:

  • Trump announces his Muslim Travel Ban. It’s discriminatory, and doesn’t address the problem. In fact, it will probably make terrorism worse. Sh*t. This is our new President. 

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Have you got the new D.T.s?

screen-shot-2016-12-12-at-4-39-20-pmIt used to stand for delirium tremens. But I’m re-dubbing it the Donald Trumps. Interestingly, the symptoms of the two are almost exactly the same, based on a quick Google search of the former:

Bodily symptoms include shaking, confusion, high blood pressure, fever and heavy sweating. You may also experience an increased startle reflex or a water-electrolyte imbalance, and in the case of the Donald Trumps, rapid eye movement when trying to make sense of the New York Times on your phone.

Also common is fast heart rate, physical substance dependance, tremor, anxiety, dilated pupils, insomnia, seizures or shallow breathing. Watery eyes are mostly seen in women, but can occasionally present in men as well, if exposed to enough information.

Psychological symptoms can include: increased irritability or restlessness; seeing or hearing things other people do not; and tactile hallucinations such the sensation of something of crawling on oneself. DTs usually include extremely intense feelings of “impending doom,” along with delirium or mental hallucinations, such as Russia hacking our government computers. (Oh, wait — that’s real.)

Severe anxiety and feelings of imminent death are common symptoms of the DTs, as is paranoia. Altered mental status (a.k.a. “global confusion”) and sympathetic overdrive can progress to cardiovascular collapse. As well as climate collapse.

Confusion is often noticeable to onlookers, as those with the DTs will have trouble forming simple sentences or making basic logical calculations. The DTs are characterized by the presence of altered sensorium, that is, a complete hallucination without any recognition of the real world.  Read More…

Stumped, and a Trip to an Island

MontaukmorningMonday morning:

I’m having a tough time trying to figure out how to save the world today.

It’s not because I’m in Montauk at the moment, sitting out on the deck with my coffee and oatmeal, a warm breeze on my skin, a kitty in the shade next to me, and a nice, new copy of Moby Dick at the ready. Which should make me feel pretty content.

Also, I’m thrilled with the response to my post on becoming a vegan — I’m actually having a positive impact! YEAH!

But then there’s all this:

I just took a look at Breitbart.com to see for myself where Donald Trump’s frightening ideas are coming from.

Once our first female President takes office (please, god), I’m afraid she will be so tainted that any forward movement of our fair sex will be negligible.

Sea levels are rising NOW due to melting polar caps caused by manmade climate change, wreaking havoc on our coasts. (More than just the recent Louisiana floods.)

And my Dad told me this weekend that he was diagnosed with bladder cancer. 😦

No wonder my head hurts and I want to cry.

So what waste-tastic things should I write about today? I have loads of ideas in the bin (no pun intended). . . Read More…

A Handy-Dandy Guide to NonProfit Email Subject Lines

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(Actual screenshot from my iPhone)

Apparently somebody found out I’m trying to save the world, because I get a crazy number of emails from cool organizations like WWF and Change.org and the League of Conservation Voters, asking for a signature, or a five-spot, or whatevs.

It can make one bonkers, trying to figure out who to help, and who to (guiltily, in my case) send to the Trash.

But two emails jumped out at me – one on Wednesday, and one last week.

The one from Wednesday got me glued to a live stream of Congress for much of the next 20 hours, watching a HISTORIC move by Democrats, as they staged a sit-in on the House floor to get Republicans to bring two gun measures to a vote. “No bill, no break,” they declared. It was some of the most riveting television I’ve seen in years, as each Representative spoke eloquently and passionately through the night and morning. More on that later.

trash cansThe other email, from last week, was an update on the Single-Use Bag Bill that New York City passed last month, instating a 5-cent fee for single-use shopping bags beginning this October. I was absolutely giddy about the idea of the city giving out five million fewer plastic bags a year (I wrote about it here). Well, it turns out New York State OVERTURNED the ruling – or at least postponed it to February while “amendments” are made. ARRRGGGHHH.

The rest of the emails I got became a big blur of worthwhile but overwhelming solicitations, though. I mean, of course we want to help. But do we have to read another email to do it??

Well, yours truly is here to save you from wasting your precious time (this is Waste Management: The Blog). Herewith, a succinct Guide to Nonprofit Email Subject Lines (with pictures!) that may have appeared in your in-box recently, as they have over here. It’s possible I got a few other emails mixed in there, too. I was gonna make the whole thing into a quiz, letting you match the subject lines with my pithy descriptions, but I decided to give your brains a break. I’ll start things off easy with the one I just mentioned and move on (pun intended) from there . . . Read More…