Friday, August 29, 2008

self-help

Feeling blue? Here are some . . . ok, two . . . recently tested and Gina-approved methods to get you back on the right track.

1. A Guide to Rational Living
As I mentioned once before, Albert Ellis is one of my personal heroes. Well I finally got one of his eighty thousand books . . . err, ok, I got the book like two years ago, and now I'm finally reading it. Whatever. It's my first and probably last self-help book, and I've been reading it every day like those Jewish ladies who read the Torah on the subway and freak me out by moving their lips so fast, only not on the subway, and without moving my lips. An excerpt:
If you only overwhelm yourself with dire love needs, you will create enough misery to last you a lifetime. If you wish to make yourself even more miserable, you can easily add one more idiotic notion--namely, Irrational Belief No. 2: The idea that you absolutely must be thoroughly competent, adequate, and achieving. Or a saner but still foolish variation: The idea that you at least must be competent or talented in some important area.
Woops. Oh, and don't be fooled by the numbering of Irrational Beliefs. There is no actual list, although there are many numbers mentioned, along with some mathematical equations, and the book has no structure or logical order whatsoever and keeps repeating the exact same thing over and over. I imagine Ellis' (yeah, no "s" after the apostrophe, like Jesus) other books are basically the same. Bless him. Crackpotness aside, his "stop feeling sorry for yourself and deal with your shit and yes that's very hard to do and it takes lots of time and practice but just fucking start doing it" philosophy is exactly what I need to prevent me from dropping everything and running away like I've done, oh, four or five times before. Although, seriously, for $1200 a month (i.e., the absolute rent ceiling for me for the forseeable future in that I could theoretically pay that amount and have no money left for anything else, not that moving will take care of my problems, or that I have enough money to do so, although it can't hurt to just look around on Craigslist, right?) I could get this typical place in the heart of Bed Stuy:

Mmm . . . beige . . .

Or a four-bedroom house with a huge yard and a hot tub overlooking the Columbia River just outside of Portland.

Being mature and patient blows. Being an adult, however does not . . .

2. The Raleigh Hotel
. . . because, yes, some days CAN begin with a pina colada by the pool.