Son, We'd All Like To Lie Around All Day Being 'Clinically Depressed'

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Vol 40 Issue 35

Grocery-Store Worker Can't Bear To Eat Food Anymore

FLOURISSANT, MO—Pick'n Save stockboy Joel Melcher said Monday that his overexposure to groceries has destroyed his taste for food. "When I first started working here, I thought, 'This is awesome—I'll be able to bring bags of food home from work every night,'" said Melcher, who receives a 25 percent discount at the store. "But now, being around it all day long, at the end of the day I can't even stand to look at frozen food, baked goods, meat, dairy items, or produce. Makes me sick just thinking about it." Melcher has vowed that, when he gets a new job, he "will never set foot in a grocery store ever again."

Smoker Inspired By Sight Of Elderly Smoker

EVANSVILLE, WY—Rod Jensen, a 25-year-old smoker with a two-pack-a-day habit, drew inspiration from 83-year-old Leo Menting Monday. "See, that guy over there's still kicking," Jensen said, after he saw the elderly man smoking a Marlboro at Caroline's Corner Cafe. "I'm always hearing about the health risks of smoking, and how it can kill you, but look at that old dude. He doesn't have one of those holes in his throat. He's not even using a cane." Minutes later, Jensen added onion rings to his order after seeing Menting's wife do the same.

The Scream Poster Stolen From Area Dorm Room

ST. PAUL, MN—Concordia University campus police are still investigating Tuesday's theft of a poster of Edvard Munch's The Scream from an area dorm room. "We're doing everything in our power to recover the poster," officer Donald Benson said of the poster, which was stolen while the two residents of 204 Walther Hall were studying in the second-floor common area. "With its iconic contorted human figure beneath a swirling red sky, The Scream is a masterpiece of German expressionism, and the poster was valued at $7.95." The work of art is one of only 86 copies known to exist on the campus.

Cheney Urged Not To Work Blue During Convention

WASHINGTON, DC—At the insistence of members of the Republican Party, Vice-President Dick Cheney agreed not to work blue during the Republican National Convention, GOP sources reported Monday. "I sat him down and said, 'Dick, this is going to be on television, and we want to project a good, family-friendly image. You've gotta keep it clean,'" Republican National Committee chairman Ed Gillespie said. "I keep trying to get it through to him that using the 'F' word just shows a lack of imagination." A spokesman for Cheney said the vice-president will tone down his speech, but argued that Cheney is "only saying what everyone's already thinking."

Many Lack Potable Water

According to a recent U.N. report, more than one billion people worldwide lack access to clean drinking water. What do you think?

Small Group Of Dedicated Rich People Change The World

NEW YORK—Cynics often say that one man can't make a difference in a huge and complicated world. But this week in New York, a few tremendously rich and powerful men have given those naysayers reason to reconsider their views. At the Republican National Convention, which concludes Thursday, a handful of dedicated men will change the world.
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Son, We'd All Like To Lie Around All Day Being 'Clinically Depressed'

Justin? Justin, can you hear me through this door? Are you asleep again? Your mom said you got up to use the bathroom a minute ago. She was hoping you were coming down to have dinner with us. No? Hello? Well, son, I know that you have a real problem; at least, that's what the therapist tells us. Anyway, you're not alone. We all get a little low sometimes. Life is certainly no picnic—don't I know it! But usually, after a while, folks snap out of their funks. Not because they want to, but because they come around to the fact that they have no choice. The truth is, son, we'd all like to lie around all day being "clinically depressed," but at some point, we have to swallow hard and face the music. Step up to the ol' plate.

There are plenty of mornings I don't want to get up and go to work, but I do. And you know how much your mother hates that exercise bike of hers. Do you see what I'm driving at, son?

Justin, your mom and I love you, and we want you to get well. If you have something, anything, you need to get off your chest, please know that you can share it with us. There's no reason to keep it bottled up. Anything you tell that therapist of yours—what's her name, Dr. Goldbar? Goldbrick? Gold—well, anything you tell her, you can tell us, too. I never did see why you'd rather open up to a complete stranger than to the two people who spent years trying to raise you the best way they knew how, but I'm willing to accept it. Just as I accept that you have a problem that you can't control, even though there might be a solution that's as plain as the nose on your face. I guess what I'm saying, Justin, is: I'm a practical person. I always seek the most direct solution to a problem. That may not be intellectual enough for some people, but it's always worked for me.

Now, come on down to dinner, Justin. Your mom made pork chops.

Son?

Justin, do you know what could make you feel better right off the bat? Raising your blinds and letting in some light. Because, I mean, I can believe you feel clinically depressed in that room of yours—I would, too! Anyone would. It's dark, it smells, and there's mounds of clothes and books all over the floor. Get out of bed, open the window, and do a little picking up. Accomplishing a small task could do a lot to restore your self-confidence.

Speaking of windows, maybe once you get your room clean, you can help your ol' dad put up the screens. It'd be just like way back when! With all the trouble you've had lately, and the running back and forth to the clinic and to your school, I've fallen behind on household chores. You see, I don't have the luxury of spending Saturday staring at the television, all curled up in a blanket even though it's the middle of summer. There's things that need to be done.

I've also had to miss a lot of work. Now, don't worry, your dad is sitting pretty at good old Kenyon Mortgage, but I've caught a little flak from George. Well, it's not fair of him to imply that clinical depression isn't as bad as a real disease. I didn't say this to him, but it's what I believe. Okay? Don't you worry about George one bit.

By the way, did you know that those ambulance fees weren't covered by the company health plan? I got the damned co-pay bill yesterday. I yelled my head off at them over the phone, that's for sure, but the girl said there's nothing they can do. Whew, and those pills you take aren't cheap, either, are they? I figured it out, and they come to about $3 apiece! So, uh, when are they going to take effect? You've been on them for a couple months.

Son?

Look, I think your grandmother had some of this clinical depression herself. I think a lot of it stemmed from her poor upbringing—she never did learn to read or write well. So, you know, her clinical depression wasn't because she was some bored child of privilege. No, she didn't have the luxury of sitting around being clinically depressed. When she got the blues, she sucked it up and carried on, because she knew that life was full of pain—not to mention that she couldn't afford some... shrink.

Now, son, you've had more advantages in your 17 years than Mom had in all her 58, but I'm still willing to meet you halfway on your problem. Hell, I'm even willing to call it a problem, instead of calling it "lying around and feeling sorry for yourself," which is sure what it looks like. You can't claim I'm the ogre here. But that's what you think I am, right? A real jerk. "Fuck you, Butterfat," you once told me. Even though I was only trying to help. Butterfat? At least I don't lounge around in my room all day, wasting away to nothing when there's a decent meal right—

Justin, open this door right now, dammit!

Okay, well now, finally we're getting somewhere. Great to see you at last, son. Look, I'm sorry about being a little tough on you. I suppose ol' Doc Goldwhatever wouldn't be happy. But sometimes, when someone you love is clearly wasting his potential, you have to—hey, where are you going? To the bathroom, again? Justin, why did you lock the door?

Oh, dandy. Just dandy. Son, this is hardly what anyone would call a positive step.

Justin? Justin, answer me!

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