[Image description: A colour photograph of a manatee, side on, just poking its head out of the water. Its eyes are still half submerged. TEXT: “You are not an idiot. Please stop telling yourself that. You are a good and smart person who makes mistakes sometimes, and that is okay.”]
[tw: depression, anxiety, offensive know-it-alls eating your mana]
People are always ready to tell you what coping skills you’re using that are making your depression worse.
But, if you ask them what coping skills you should replace them with, they never have an answer. They give you a generic response of “do something you enjoy” or “do something that’s relaxing to you”. If you’re depressed, that’s the whole problem- you don’t enjoy anything, and everything you do produces anxiety.
So, what then?
A Sign of Economic Woes to Come…
I went to the bank today to take out a loan, and was a bit surprised to learn that the minimum loan amount one can apply for has risen from 1,000 dollars to 7,000, in just nine short months. (And that’s for a guy that has never missed a payment on any financial obligation and is making a stable and equitable living.)
Once this economy has had a taste of what it takes to replace those three trillion dollars that are being cut, we’re all going to be feeling the pain of the teabaggers’ foolishness. (Namely, corporations will continue to lay off workers en masse, outsource jobs and industry, raise prices on every damn one of us, and make it impossible to obtain or repay loans.)
Those of you who voted teabag deserve this shit, not a person who’s made every payment to which he’s obligated himself, and frankly, I hope every one of you mouth-breathing scumbags contracts chlamydia and dies in horrible pain.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows nails it
I haven’t read this (I R BAD TUMBLR RESIDENT), so someone who has correct me if I’m wrong: I’m willing to bet that Hermione ends up being wrong, following the popular tradition of the skeptic…
I think I must have communicated my point badly. Apologies. My complaint is not with Harry Potter or genres. My complaint is about an insulting and irritating story writing trope.
I am not opposed to fantasy, science fiction, or horror as genres. I freaking LOVE them. I’m opposed to the overused trope of skepticism as bad, and credulity as good.
When I said “the problem with fantasy,” it’s not a problem WITH fantasy, it’s a problem with characters who insist that magic isn’t real and dragons can’t exist, in a world swarming with werewolves and fairies and ghosts and stuff.
In a fantastic setting, being overly skeptical isn’t really skepticism, it’s just being dense and stubborn. The reason this irritates me is because it communicates clearly that the writers (and the audiences who seem to experience joyful catharsis when the naysayer gets killed in a glorious shower of guts) clearly think that real skeptical people are stubborn and dense. Everyone’s tired of someone saying “that can’t be real.” It bugs them. Because it’s more ~fun~ to believe in unicorns and gods.
It wouldn’t bug me as much if it didn’t seem like this happened an unfair amount of times. There are certainly merits to building a character who IS dense and stubborn and doesn’t want to admit that things are weird. The problem is that there seems to rarely be alternatives to that archetypical idiot, in anydirection.
Very rarely are the credulous people, the ones who believe in the witch/ghost/demon/alien/virus without any evidence, punished as gruesomely as skeptics.
Even rarer is a skeptical protagonist who, upon seeing evidence for the mystical thing the story is about, changes their mind and believes whole-heartedly in the concept. Generally speaking, they tend to experience the entire story, and if they haven’t died horribly while still denying the thing that is currently killing them, they walk away at the end, shaking their head and saying “there must be a reasonable explanation for this…” and end up in the loony bin for it or something. The audience is supposed to pity them and their incredulity. They don’t learn, which is really what skepticism should be all about.
And the rarest of all, the diamond in the rough: The protagonist who refuses to believe in something until they have been presented with enough evidence to do so, and they ended up being right while everyone else panicked and was harmed by their own unjustified beliefs. As Tim Minchin points out, one of the best shows to ever manage to do this was Scooby Doo.
That’s all. I took that picture and I launched off of it into a different rant. That’s why I tagged it #this went a different direction sorry. I do that a lot. ;)
I totally agree with your complaint in general. I tried watching X-Files from the beginning and was turned off pretty quickly. At least in the first two episodes, it’s absolutely offensive to anyone with critical thinking skills.
Stuff like that is the bread and butter of skepticism in fiction.
Like the episode of House where House spends the entire episode convincing a woman she needs to have an abortion if she wants to live and saves her life without killing the fetus anyway. While he’s doing the surgery, the fetus reaches out and grabs his finger … and for the rest of the episode House refers to the fetus as “your baby” and seems to have a change of heart.
What a crock of anti-choice, anti-skeptic shit. The character, Dr. House, knows better but the writers decided to give his character a change of heart.
Hermione is seriously the only example I can think of where a writer wrote a skeptic well and in a non-derogatory way. There should be an award for good skepticism in fantastic writing (The James Randi Literature Award?) and that she should win it for Hermione.
Seriously, who puts a scientific thinker in a fantasy story and shows that scientific thinker thrive because of her adherence to the rules of evidence?
Well, aside from me anyway. Though that story may never see the light of day at this rate. Haha.
Anyway, you’re right and totally awesome for bringing it up. :D
Yesterday, I went to this small town North of Duluth for a baby shower of a friend.
We get into town and the first thing we see are two late 20 year old guys riding “trick bikes” and holding babies in their arms.
My friend Erin says, “oh, that’s how they get around town here.”
Babies get their own hipster bike chauffeurs? If I’m ever a baby again, totes doing it in Duluth.
Sorry. I’m a bad bad person, but this interpretation amused me too much. XD