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View Full Version : Is this, like, freakily, frighteningly bizarre?



lANTERNjACK o'tRUMPETmARSH
07-08-2005, 08:29 AM
For the past month, I've been writing sports features on everything from girls' fast pitch softball to inline roller hockey for $15 a story, but an interviewee's question yesterday made me realize: I have absolutely no idea what newspaper I'm writing for. I've written some 50 stories and do...not...know the name of the newspaper I'm writing for. I've spoken to the city editor, the paper's phone operator, at least three general-assignment reporters a thousand-thousand times (and even read the newspaper itself!) and still, STILL! do not know what newspaper I'm spooling this fluff for. What's even more unusual: I just found out I had a tumor removed 10 years ago and I don't remember that, either. A tumor...RIPPED from my body and I have absolutely nil recollection. What's more: I have no idea what I minored in at college and I JUST graduated a month ago. Is this freaking out anyone else but me?

poetinahat
07-08-2005, 08:38 AM
Noooo, not at all!

By the way, when can you pay back that $50 you borrowed from me last week? *heh*

reph
07-08-2005, 09:31 AM
Yes, Lantern..., those things are bizarre. You say you read the paper you write for; its name should be on every page. Its name may also be on the checks you get, if they pay you that way. Maybe you forgot your surgery because it was traumatic. Could your parents fill you in? Do you have a scar? As for your college minor, you can remind yourself of it by checking your résumé if you included it there. If not, the college should have a record of it.

If you're serious about not remembering such things most of the time, maybe you should see a doctor. You might have a medical problem. People usually know the names of newspapers they habitually read, even if they don't write for them.

lANTERNjACK o'tRUMPETmARSH
07-08-2005, 12:21 PM
...For the past month, I've been having these weird nocturnal experiences. I'll be lying in bed (I sleep on a heap of mattresses, or in an armchair, or on the floor, or on a couch, or under a bush in the backyard: I'm a bit of a gypsy sleeper), lights on or off (doesn't matter), and a numbing paralysis falls over my bed. Imagine a blackout, my nerves like street lamps, winking out one right after the other. I feel my pulse thrumming through every cell in my body, as though I were a plucked guitar string. I can feel the blood in my brain thundering and sloshing up against my cranium. Needless to say, I'm terrified, limbs sheathed in ice, brain humming like an extraterrestrial space craft, body pulsating, fairly palpitating. Then I start hearing voices. Not in my head. Literally hearing. I mean decibels, sound waves. The voices crackle in and out of coherence, like a space opera on an antique cathedral radio. Maybe I hear the chaos of untold legions (demonic entities? Martian forces?) thumping around downstairs, their pandemonium resonating through the floorboards. Or sour nothings whispered in my ears. I see things, visual hallucinations, as well as aural. Characters from Dante, from Robert Grave's mythology books, or John Carpenter and George Romero movies. With an almighty effort of will, I snap my body out of the grip of this nocturnal visitation, try to return to my normal sleep cycle, but it's remorseless, recurring and recurring. Visions of Hell, crackling flames, imminent death. Needless to say, this is not a pleasant experience. We're talking biblical anxiety attacks.

Isn't that weird? Freaky deaky. Mmm-hmmm. A real head-scratcher. Maybe it's, like, preemptive Alzheimer's. You think? P.S. I can't remember my password on this site. Hmmm, the mystery thickens.

Spookster
07-08-2005, 04:16 PM
Lantern, you may want to see your physician. I've no idea of your medical history, but the symptoms definately merit a work-up.

The funky occurences during sleep sounds like you could have sleep paralysis. The memory loss could be caused from a range of medical illnesses and I would highly recommend seeing a professional. You're pretty young to develope Alzheimer's, but there are other neurological diseases s/he may want to rule out.

Perks
07-08-2005, 04:30 PM
Yes.

William Haskins
07-08-2005, 05:35 PM
i think you're making too much of all this.

arrowqueen
07-09-2005, 03:05 AM
It's called 'hypnogogia' - and it's bleedin' horrible!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypnogogia

It's got a perfectly logical explanation, but that doesn't stop it being absolutely terrifying.

reph
07-09-2005, 03:18 AM
Lantern, the hypnogogia doesn't explain the memory losses you described. You really need to see a doctor. Several kinds of neurological problems could be causing your difficulties. Some of them would need immediate treatment.

poetinahat
07-09-2005, 07:08 AM
Is this all for real?

If the bloke needs a physician, then great, but not a bunch of Googled diagnosis. This is, after all, a writers' forum -- not the place one would go for medical guidance....

reph
07-09-2005, 07:42 AM
poetinahat, sometimes people with new symptoms turn first to the off-topic section of whatever board they already use. I believe he does need a physician. I asked a medical person about it before posting today.

MacAllister
07-09-2005, 07:50 AM
I rather prefer Google diagnostics to the distracted six and a half minutes I typically receive from a physician...

WriteRead
07-09-2005, 09:24 AM
Lantern Jack, you lit my nite w your absolutely out of the line, exquisite and intense style of writing. It's worth the Absinthe or the Exquisite Corpse, the Vestal magazine, dude, really. Your narrations of your sleeping paralysis put my hair on end and I liked it. BTW, I think you pull one on us all, here, and we, suckers, swallow it. But not me, uhm-uhm, no, not me. You're perfectly okay, if you ask me, but so was Poe, until his genial opuses of writing art.

If this is the style of your articles in the incognito (to you) newspaper for which you write, then they should double your pay. Tell'em I said so. If they doubt it, tell'em I know what I'm talking.

Now, seriously, re your problems, keep us updated.

I truly believe all is in our head and we can do it, we can shape it anyway we want, head, life, world, anything.

Dan

poetinahat
07-09-2005, 10:09 AM
poetinahat, sometimes people with new symptoms turn first to the off-topic section of whatever board they already use. I believe he does need a physician. I asked a medical person about it before posting today.

Reph, if what you say is true, I'm running a mile from this thread. I'll take a doctor over a stranger's post or Wikipedia any day, and I sure wouldn't play with someone else's health by sticking in my 2c worth. How do you know what other background isn't included in the original post?

Wishing all the best, but stepping away.

reph
07-09-2005, 10:21 AM
Reph, if what you say is true, I'm running a mile from this thread. I'll take a doctor over a stranger's post or Wikipedia any day....
I don't think we disagree over what Lantern should do. He needs to see a doctor, and that's the advice some of us have given him.

JennaGlatzer
07-09-2005, 11:49 AM
Quite seriously, I always Google health concerns, and sometimes check in with people on forums for their experiences before AND after seeing a doc... it's one of my favorite uses of the Internet and can be perfectly reliable if you're checking appropriate sites.

Can also ease the freak-outs if you have some weird symptoms that you're sure must be cancer/heart disease/etc. and realize the chances are good that it's something minor.

aka eraser
07-09-2005, 07:10 PM
I think Jack is the new nick of a person who was a reg on our old boards. If so, this person is young, had a difficult and colourful life and is a superb writer. And, (finger wagging here "Jack") I think you're off your meds or need your dosage tweaked. Go see your doc.

Fractured_Chaos
07-09-2005, 10:00 PM
I rather prefer Google diagnostics to the distracted six and a half minutes I typically receive from a physician...

You're seeing the wrong physician, then.

Although, I admit the one I have is a rarity this day and age, but he actually listens, treats you with respect, and explains thing in understandable english, without talking down to you.

Can I pack him up when I move to Washington?

lANTERNjACK o'tRUMPETmARSH
07-11-2005, 03:21 AM
I love you all! Sorry. So, so sorry. That was the mania talking. I sometime experience errant bursts of exuberant emotion. Yes, I most certainly do have hypnogogia, and in ample doses. 30 to 40% of all people, according to MY Google Search, experience it sometime in their life. I experience it 20-40 times a month. It's because I am, A) an insomniac. And B) Bi-polar mixed. That's right, I--Little, old Lantern--have Sylvia Plath syndrome. Only I have a much severe case. At least she got a break in the monotony, pingponging between funks and highs. I, on the other hand, experience both depression and mania at THE SAME TIME, ALL THE TIME, EVERY DAY, EVERY MOMENT. Cool-O, huh? I have, in the past six years, been on 35 different anti-Ds and anti-Ps. I've run the antidepressant alphabet, from Alvyrin to Zyprexa. I've been on pills that've slapped an extra 90 pounds to my 100-pound frame. I've been on pills that give me small seizures every time I get horny. I've been on pills that rob me of my equilibrium and pills that make me go to the potty 250 times a day (that's known as bloody-hole syndrome, colloquially speaking). My primary symptoms are: hyper speech patterns, delusions, paranoia, IBS, irritability, occasional hallucinations, suicidal thinking, the works. Not that I'm depressed about all this (believe me, the mania takes care of that). Unfortunately, it does make my anti-social and a bit of a loner, meaning that, in order to find the social acceptance I so dearly crave, I have to seek...other sources. Like last night, I snuck out of the house round midnight, spent a couple of hours gathering toads and then told them all about my day, for three hours. They were very attentive. Why am I telling all this to you folk, instead of to some quack? A) You guys know me; I'm Will; remember? Cranky Will, Naughty Will, Feisty Will (nothing? really?) B) I have no health insurance, can't afford it (Ironic, isn't it? I'm a newspaperman, the world's most hated occupation, yet I can't afford to see a doctor for the antidotes to all those poisoned-pen letters cranks mail me) C) This is the Office Party section. You're allowed to talk about non-literary stuff here. This is a no-taboo, pure-tangential zone. This is the place where people who know each other here can get to really each other. And since you folk know me, in all my various guises and incarnations, I'm letting you know a little bit more about me (By the way, I'm writing for the Amherst Bee, I think). Furthermore...I LOVE YOU ALL!...Damn, there it goes, again. Anyhoo, to keep the self-absorption express chugging, I just graduated from college, 3.65 G.P.A. (it turns out I have no minor, go fig), and am searching for a job, financial coffers and parental pride withering by the moment. So, if y'all don't mind, keep your ears to the ground and tuned in to any potential newspaper jobs. I'm just scraping by on a couple of piddling freelance jobs at present. I NEED JOB NOW, POR FAVOR. If any of you guys are editors and want to hire a guy who knows his stuff, some stuff-shirted college boy with varied experience, please, dudinsky, give me a rink (I'm living in Titanic...er, I mean Buffalo...NY. Someone get off this doomed ocean liner). Oooh, I just bottomed out. Hmm, well, the depression's setting in. Gotta jet. Thanks for letting me pump youse guyses ears off for a bit. Laters.
Sincerely,
Bawdy Jack, Springheel Jack, Saucy Jack

lANTERNjACK o'tRUMPETmARSH
07-11-2005, 03:32 AM
For those of you who don't know me from the old board, like this poetaster fellow, I'm one of those people who likes to turn his private tragedies into fodder for his clownish monologues. So, if any of y'all don't like rambling, Charlie kaufmanesque, fiery-blooded monologues, remember, this here Internet is a vast and mostly-unexplored (and unclaimed) frontier and you don't have to read them. You can just mosey right on round them. You won't have to go that much out of your way. When you're traveling by bytes and pixels, detours only add microseconds onto your E.T.As. For the rest of you, to quote Tarantino (who, in turn, was quoting someone else), okay ramblers, let's get rambling.

AND WILL SOMEONE PLEASE E-MAIL ME MY NEW PASSWORD OPTION, PLEASE, POR FAVOR...Um, I'm bilingual, that's all I got.

WriteRead
07-11-2005, 04:02 AM
Jack, your prose is S U B L I M E ! ! I didn't joke when I said it. I mean it and I say it again. You're simply very eloquent. I wish someone will hire you, b/c if not, they stand a big loss. Fair warning to them.

Your medications - I know what you talk about. Not from a personal perspective, but another, indirect one. I volunteered for such people for a yr and a half, in Israel, in a volunteering org which had day clubs for them, to provide a social venue for them. There were some unique types there and some geniuses, too, lemme tell you this. There were some jokers there which would crack me up, and I'm no little joker myself, let me assure you. I saw the outward expression of some of the symptoms you mention and even took care of some, sometimes. THAT WAS a unique and very enriching experience, which I'd repeat again anyday. It was hard and deep, very deep, but very rewarding.

Good luck, man, and if you care, may God bless you! Love, Jack, Always and All Ways (This is my usual signature, and I shower you w it, freely.)

Dan

Lantern Jack
07-11-2005, 04:57 AM
...go to my Web Page at http://www.epinions.com/user-jmaslinisahack

Believe me, the above is a taster, compared to the smorgasbord which awaits you.

Glad to add another groupie to my collection (I'll be sure to find a second one as soon as possible, so you don't get lonely in there).

WriteRead
07-11-2005, 07:00 AM
Collection, eh? Grouppie, eh? Okay! Don't mind... http://absolutewrite.com/forums/images/icons/icon7.gif I put your site in Favs, to give it a looksee later.

See ya around, man!

Dan

Lantern Jack
07-11-2005, 09:31 AM
...Wait a second, you referred to me as a "bloke." That's an Australian expression, right? So, unless, you've got a rather eclectic personal lexicon, you're from Australia. If you are, let me just say, A) That is so freakin' cool. B) I am very, very sorry for all the brilliant thespians we Yanks have stolen from you guys. Truly, our abuse of Kidman and the like is a war crime if ever I heard of one. My apologies (this is so cool, I got chewed out by someone from Australia; Damn, I am so wasted; wait, no I'm not, lol).

P.S. In my defense, I'm not a full-blooded American, I'm a Canadian-American. Hence the good grammar, and all without the use of a spell check.

JennaGlatzer
07-11-2005, 12:03 PM
LJ/WBB, I just read your epinions essay (you know the one). Brilliant, disgusting, moving, fascinating, heartbreaking, and a hell of a read. Is it a book excerpt? Tell me you have more.

P.S. I gained 40 pounds on Zyprexa. Luckily, it went away. Don't believe I've ever been on an "A" med, though. My alphabetical order starts at Buspar.

Lantern Jack
07-11-2005, 12:28 PM
...but I honestly don't know which one you mean. I have over 350 pieces saved on Epinions, as sort of a cyber-poor man's copyright. Thanks for the props, all the same.

JennaGlatzer
07-11-2005, 12:34 PM
Bah! This one: http://www.epinions.com/content_4170817668.

How am I going to find you a publisher if you don't turn it into a book?

lANTERNjACK o'tRUMPETmARSH
07-13-2005, 07:52 AM
You read that one. I am so sorry. That piece was just one, toasty, steaming mule apple. Urgh. What was I thinking? Just as (as one reviewer pointed out) Kevin Costner should never open an action epic drinking his own urine, one should also never open a literary piece with a rape scene. That scene is bare of depth, drive and originality. And the piece just got hazier as it progressed. There's no laser-beam focus. Heck, there isn't even a pen-light focus. Instead of dialing in on the rape, which isn't that interesting (according to seven different literary magazines: Quote: "Yeah, try us again after you're done with your infatuation with your sad, tragic self"). The essay becomes increasingly schizophrenic when I leap a poetic hurdle (and several states) and embark on a bizarre romance without even the slightest emotional shading or intellectual resonance. Yeesh. Clips a clothes pin on your nose and run for the fragrant bath soaps and cans of tomato soup. Again, so, so sorry.

maestrowork
07-13-2005, 08:02 AM
Will, I have said it before, and I will say it again. You're a wonderful writer. Keep writing. And take care of that busy brain of yours.

JennaGlatzer
07-13-2005, 11:33 AM
Will, shut up. It's a brilliant piece of work. You know damn well that people have different tastes, and the lit mag editor who wrote that "critique" was a fool. Could it use more focus? Sure. But even in its raw state, it's compelling and poetically drawn.

I thought about you all day, wondering which editor would really appreciate your work, thinking about all the people I know who need to read something just like what you wrote. Men don't talk about rape. Two men I've been very close with have been raped by other men, and with each of them, I got one short explanation and they never wanted to speak about it again. I'm sick of the shame people feel over things that aren't their faults. They feel that shame right until the moment they empathize with someone else who was in the same damn situation.

Look, I don't easily get riled up over unpublished work. Your story is important. Finish writing it. Get back to me.

poetinahat
07-13-2005, 12:45 PM
...Wait a second, you referred to me as a "bloke." That's an Australian expression, right? So, unless, you've got a rather eclectic personal lexicon, you're from Australia. If you are, let me just say, A) That is so freakin' cool. B) I am very, very sorry for all the brilliant thespians we Yanks have stolen from you guys. Truly, our abuse of Kidman and the like is a war crime if ever I heard of one. My apologies (this is so cool, I got chewed out by someone from Australia; Damn, I am so wasted; wait, no I'm not, lol).

P.S. In my defense, I'm not a full-blooded American, I'm a Canadian-American. Hence the good grammar, and all without the use of a spell check.

Okay, okay, I left the thread, then I lurked back on.... Saw Jenna had posted; thought, "Hmmm... maybe it's safe again."

I truly didn't think I was chewing you (or anybody) out; if I did, rewind/erase, please! I made a joke early on, then I got caught up in a discussion I should've left alone.

There's a lot that's very close to home in your thread and in your prose. I read, I smile and nod; then I think of someone I love, whom I now understand a little better.

Aaaanyway, I'm not full-blooded either; I'm an American-Australian (Ohio/Massachusetts). Came over to visit and couldn't leave. It's heaven (and freakin' cool as well). So, I can only bask in the reflected glory of the fine Aussie exports!

You've obviously got a big fan club here. Time for me to read your stuff and see what the fuss is about!

Signing off...

lANTERNjACK o'tRUMPETmARSH
07-13-2005, 10:09 PM
...Ohio. Hmmm, Ohio. [As John Larouche in "Adaptation"] "Ohio, yes, Ohio." I remember it like it's a dream. No, literally. I've been driven through it late at night many times, asleep in the back of my parents' car. You see, Ohio is very smooth. You could throw a Bocce ball at one end and it wouldn't stop until it reached, well, Pennsylvania. I've slept through every state east of the Mississippi River, and Ohio is the best for a good, long cat nap (Pennsylvania's the worst). Absolutely no turbulence.

poetinahat
07-14-2005, 02:49 AM
Ahhh... no bumping your head on the armrest, because the road never bends!