Tuesday, April 22

A dickheads guide to mental illness (compiled and written by a dickhead, for dickheads)

Slurping on the Tixylix seems to be working. As does listening to Crowded House. And eating vegetables. Today I was able to leave the house for more than half an hour. Not that you care, you bunch of faceless geeks.

So I have made this list, I'm putting it here so that it can burn into my retinas for all eternity. It is a list of things that I need to do in order to fully pull myself out of this rut and become a functioning human being again. But it could also serve as some sort of idiots guide to surviving minor depressive episodes.

1. Wash face in morning. This is usually a no-brainer. But when I'm fucked up I always forget and take the bins out with jam and last night's drool sticking my hair to my chin.

2. Remember to eat different coloured food. Beige food is generally the most convenient as it covers biscuits, bread (toast), Shreddies and peanut butter. All of which can be eaten raw or can be prepared with minimum fuss in under three minutes. All of which contribute to malaise.

3. Vary your liquid intake. Not tea. Tea is another beige foodstuff. Tea has caffeine in it and contributes to the devil's insomnia. So you get out of bed at two-hourly intervals and make yourself a cup of tea to calm down. Only to have the caffeine kick in 20 minutes later. And the bladder urges. Yadda, yadda, yadda. This cycle can go on for 72 hours.

4. Step away from the television. It can lull you into a false sense of security. You might think you're on the mend, because 'Loose Woman' Colleen Nolan's comely bosoms provide some sort of vicarious audio-visual cuddle, but when the news comes on at 1.30 you're in for a nasty shock.

5. Sleep on your back. If you sleep on your front or side, as I do, then you will be very tempted to cling onto your pillow for sanctuary during the night/early morning. I have spent twenty minutes unsticking myself from a pillow before.

6. Don't sleep during the afternoon. You'll only wake up at 6pm and think 'oh fuck, there's still HOURS left to get through'. Might as well sit 'em out conscious.

7. Go out for a bit. Yeah, so you'll think people are staring at you, but actually, Stroud Green Tesco's on a weekday is a veritable melting pot of mental disorders, and you'll blend in just fine. My personal favourite character is Half-Tranny-Man, who wears one DM boot and one high-heeled shoe and walks like a pirate. Except last time I saw him he wasn't wearing any shoes, or walking, because he'd found a wheelchair in a skip.

8. Borrow an animal. Find a friend with one or get one of your own. The stupider the better. I favour dogs, but rabbits and parrots will do. NOT CATS, they don't give a fuck about you, they will only reject you.

9. Try not to text people. You'll only bore them, and they can't do anything to help you anyway.

10. If all else fails, and I mean all else, then do this: Take valium/sleeping pills for 48 hours straight. Wake up after two days, having forgotten why you fell asleep in the first place. Carry on as normal.

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