Right, so, the stuff Starla says in the 3rd panel? I based it on something I heard someone actually say to a mixed group of friends once. Without going into the who’s and what’s of everybody’s personal business, suffice to say that the company it was said to were dealing with a variety of problems stemming from health, crime, housing and marital situations. As far as Hell’s Halfway House goes though, I suppose this can be applied to the tendency of others to expect the mentally ill to somehow hang their problems on the coat rack whenever they become “inconvenient” (I mean, to people besides the ill person.)
“Snap out of it.”
“Deal with it.”
“You seem smart, why can’t you realize those things can’t possibly be real?”
The original conversation did not end with the same level of empathy exhibited in the last panel.
It’s actually interesting that this ends with Starla acknowledging a sense of dread, and even looking happy to understand it, because I just read in that Barbara Ehrenreich book that much of the “positive thinking” movement is rooted in anxiety: “If I always think positive, bad things won’t happen, or at least they won’t be as severe.” She seems to make a very definite distinction between “positivity” and genuine “happiness”.
So now for a little happiness:
I drew this on the placemat at Curly’s on 14th St. After getting frames for the art show in Red Hook next Saturday, I was all about the garlicky kale and butternut squash, and Eric was game too. So Curly’s has kale and squash, and also crayons at every table. Who needs to force positive thought with so many things in one place to offer happiness?