For misfits

Steve Clark Lost His Battle But Helped Me With Mine

by Bill Brenner September 29, 2011 Addiction

I’ve been listening to a ton of Def Leppard this week. It started when I caught two documentaries on the making of “Pyromania” and “Hysteria” on Youtube. I’m remembering what this band did for me during my troubled teenage years. Mood music: One of the big points in both documentaries is that those albums wouldn’t have been the classics they became without the late guitarist Steve Clark. When we think of this band, we…  [Read More]

Finish What You Started

by Bill Brenner September 28, 2011 Adventures in writing

Funny thing about people who suffer from serious mental illness: They tend to make all these big plans but never really follow through with anything. I don’t fault them. For one thing, they have an illness. Also, I used to be just like them. Mood music: [spotify:track:37A5wFomo4EVz5tGInAynI] Watching the start-stop-start-thud behavior of a friend is reminding me of what I used to do. My friend, who I won’t name, always has some big plans afoot….  [Read More]

Be Yourself, And Let The Chips Fall Wherever

by Bill Brenner September 23, 2011 Addiction

If someone doesn’t like you, too bad for them. Mood music: From the good folks at “Choose Happiness” — something to keep in mind when people get all snotty and hypocritical about who you are and what you do:

Paranoia Was My Destroyer

by Bill Brenner September 21, 2011 Addiction

There’s a particularly insidious side of my OCD that I have to fight hard to contain, because it’s the thing most likely to destroy me. This is a story about paranoia. Mood music: Let’s start with a definition from Wikipedia: Paranoia is a thought process believed to be heavily influenced by anxiety or fear, often to the point of irrationality and delusion. Paranoid thinking typically includes persecutory beliefs, or beliefs of conspiracy concerning a perceived threat towards oneself. Anxiety and fear once played a major…  [Read More]

I Miss The Fighting

by Bill Brenner September 13, 2011 Communication skills for the crazy

In yet another sign that I’m not playing with a full deck, I realized this morning that I miss the fighting between my best friend and his father. Mood music: It’s another stray memory that came to the surface as I went to the wake and funeral for Al Marley. Al and Sean used to have some blistering arguments at the dining room table over religion and politics, appearances — you name it. At the…  [Read More]

My Brain Is On The Pavement. But At Least I Showered

by Bill Brenner September 9, 2011 Addiction

It’s hard to pinpoint the moment my recovery started getting wobbly and I started getting sloppy. I don’t know if it’s fully accurate to call this a relapse, but it’s pretty damn close. Mood music: One thing is certain: I’m in a shaky place lately, and this is as good a place to sort things out. Talking is always better, but sometimes I have to write it. I’ve been very tired lately, and in my…  [Read More]

Clearer Language From The Catholic Church On Suicide

by Bill Brenner September 5, 2011 Depression

For those, like me, who struggle with suicide, particularly how the Catholic Church feels about it, I have something useful a good friend sent to me this afternoon, presumably after reading this morning’s post. Mood music: From the Catechism of the Catholic Church: “2282 Grave psychological disturbances, anguish, or grave fear of hardship, suffering, or torture can diminish the responsibility of the one committing suicide.  2283 We should not despair of the eternal salvation…  [Read More]

I Miss The Beer Bottle Collection Under The Patio

by Bill Brenner August 31, 2011 Coping tools

In my opinion there’s no better way to release anger and frustration than prayer. But let’s be honest: Sometimes it helps to break things. Mood music:  When I lived in the house on Revere Beach, there was a storage room beneath the concrete patio where I collected all the empty beer bottles from the numerous parties we had in the basement apartment. I spent a lot of time in that room. I’d blast my old…  [Read More]

41 Years

by Bill Brenner August 26, 2011 Addiction

Some people get depressed on their birthday. Not me. The fact that I turn 41 today is a freak of nature. But a year into my forties, I know I have more cleaning up to do. Mood music: Item: When I was sick with the Crohn’s Disease as a kid, I lost a lot of blood and developed several side ailments. I’m told by my parents that the doctor’s were going to remove the colon more than…  [Read More]

How Many Times Should a Man Say He’s Sorry? (Inspired By Kevin Mitnick)

by Bill Brenner August 23, 2011 Communication skills for the crazy

Yesterday I wrote a post over at my information security blog about famed hacker Kevin Mitnick and how he is conducting himself in the limelight. Is he redeeming himself after a life of crime? That’s the point a lot of people seem to be debating. Should a man or woman who has made mistakes in life apologize in every interview, at every conference, behind every closed door? I’m reminded of that scene in “Raiders of…  [Read More]