Thursday, July 28, 2011


Note: this post has nothing to do with Allen Ginsberg.

Work sucked today. I took a suicide call.

The caller was a stranger who heard the commotion and went in to see if everything was alright. It wasn't. The man had been hanging for hours, probably all night, when they found him.

I've heard a lot of screaming and crying at work. It's just part of the everyday soundtrack now. There are different varieties: the snarling rage that attends customer and neighbor disputes, and on the most idiotic pretexts; hysterical cries of physical pain when a pregnant young woman gets beat up by her boyfriend––yet again; the quiet, hollow keening I heard as a woman described the sexual abuse of her little boy.

But, before today, I'd never heard anything like this. You could hear the pattern repeat over and over as family members entered the room for the first time, only to find––in place of their loved one––the cold, rigid obscenity of death. One man could only repeat, again and again, "Oh god, oh god, he did it. Oh god." The sounds were hardly distinguishable as human.

And I don't think I'll ever be able to forget them.

So, just a reminder, if you're suffering, if you're contemplating doing something horrible and irrevocable, please reach out and get help. Because, I can promise you, you don't want to cause the kind of pain necessary to elicit what I heard today.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


So, I've never particularly liked Ernest L. Wilkinson. This stems from reading some quotes of his that I thought were pretty awful. (Also the BYU building they named after him is fugly.)

Then today, I read this [starts on page 164]. Wowza.

Organizing a student spy ring to keep tabs on professors you don't like? Well, it's not ethical, but... meh. Whatevs.

Lying about it over and over? Not good, but I get it. The flesh is weak.

Intentionally and repeatedly conspiring in order to ensure others––especially the student spies, who were only doing what he told them––took the fall? Throwing his subordinates under the bus? Yeah, that's what makes him a scumbag and a coward.

HT: BCC Sideblog

Sunday, July 10, 2011


There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.

——Paul Krugman