begged the chair…
Welcome to part 4 of The Indelible Sulk. I haven’t yet decided how I’ll stitch these parts together. Currently, I’m considering creating one master post that functions as a Table of Contents and Reading Guide. Also, I’ve switched from using the normal editor to writing in HTML (and CSS). Since I’m new to this, I expect a few hiccups: I apologize for these in advance.
As always, I welcome feedback and appreciate your kindness; thank you so much!
The Indelible Sulk—part 4
After exchanging pleasantries, I walked onto the film set—okay, I lied it wasn’t actually a film set, but it could’ve fooled me. Not only did Dr. Dude look like the stereotypical psychiatrist; he worked like one too. For all I knew, he repurposed a stock film set—with one glaring exception: it lacked a chaise longue When I pictured a psychiatrist’s office it always had one of those. Where else were patients to lie on while reliving their trauma? That absence jumped out at me… Was it the first thing that caught my eye? No, but it definitely surprised me the most. Perhaps psychiatrists weren’t like in the movies. Perhaps therapy would be a serious pursuit. Perhaps Dr. Dude wasn’t a complete stereotype after all, and I’d misunderstood the entire situation… I almost felt ashamed of myself for assuming. Almost…
NOTE: Initially, I couldn't remember what that (chaise longue) was called. This provides me with a great opportunity to address a chronic problem of mine: "I'm easily bored." Understanding my relationship with boredom will reveal both how I function and why I act how I act; therapy showed that to me. However, this isn't the time for a comprehensive explanation; so I've excised the relevant bit (from a future post):
I couldn't remember what it was called; my mind went blank. Consciously, I did nothing. Subconsciously, I went haywire. I started with what first came to mind: a fancy-lie-down-sofa thingy. That felt too vague... Then I remembered it was "French"; it had a French name. Subsequently, a sophisticated-and-pretentious-fancy-lie-down-sofa-but-not-quite-a-sofa-and-oh-yeah-it-has-a-French-name-that's-very-literal thingy popped up... That was too long for what was just a long chair—that triggered the right name—a long chair, but in French: une chaise longue. Une chaise longue describes the furniture concisely and clearly. Though I think my name captured its essence better, I admit that une chaise longue balances capturing its essence with practicality... Clearly, efficiency is a kink of mine.
Instead of a chaise longue, there were two identical, fancy armchairs angled slightly towards each other. Each was also angled towards a more authoritative-looking chair: that chair was undoubtedly Dr. Dude’s. Quite frankly, it felt more like an academic throne, but I digress… Together, the two armchairs took up the space of one chaise longue; each one could comfortably seat one person.
NOTE: Each could also awkwardly seat three (maybe even four, but definitely not five) raccoons in a trench coat, or uncomfortably seat
half a quarter of André the Giant...
I said they were fancy, but I didn’t know that initially: they didn’t look it; they looked nondescript. That plainness aroused my suspicion. I expected more lavish seating in a psychiatrist’s office—something with more leather, something expensive enough that I’d worry about ruining it.
NOTE: Though most of you won't understand—I pictured something amma and appa would coat with a LOT of Sellotape, or a plastic sheet.
“Please, make yourself comfortable. Have a seat.” Dr. Dude interrupted my reverie.
Oh no. I didn’t expect this. I had prepared for an annoying questionnaire followed by a series of invasive questions from a judgemental, old white guy. Enduring scrutiny from a professionally trained observer unnerved me. Should I sit on the left chair or the right?! The stakes for sitting down had never been higher…
NOTE: At least Mr. Anderson had the choice between two distinct pills: a blue one and a red one. I had to pick between two identical chairs: a boring, brown chair and a... boring brown chair. Dear Mr. Anderson (Neo?), you had it easy...
Though both chairs were identical, they provided vastly different perspectives. From the left chair, I could comfortably make eye contact with Dr. Dude, but I couldn’t keep an eye on the front door; that peeved me. Sitting with my back towards the one entrance to the office disquieted me; I felt trapped. I hate feeling trapped.
Eye contact and
emergency exits aside, the left armchair faced the right wall. A medium-sized (perhaps 2’x 1.5′) painting of a nude woman hung on the wall. She looked—no, she was important. On further thought, maybe she wasn’t a woman; she might’ve been a Goddess or something.
NOTE: I had to look it up; it resembled The Birth of Venus.
It was tasteful; it wasn’t smut—it was too artsy to be (normal) smut. Plus, I was in a professional environment (that wasn’t a porn set—well at least not while I was there…). Art history buffs might’ve used it to “impress” others at parties (and subsequently forfeit their future invitations to parties…); anthropologists might’ve analyzed it to understand what a culture considered beauty; or historians might’ve used it to exemplify how society’s views on women had changed over a few centuries. Personally, I saw someone powerful. She definitely mattered. She exuded enough confidence to dominate the OnlyFans, Twitch, and Instagram markets; she just reeked of clout—plus someone had fixated on her so much that they painted her: I just knew she was important… The painting could’ve meant a lot of things to different people, but what mattered right now was what it meant to a psychiatrist: a diagnostic tool meant to answer the ultimate question how bad are the patient’s mommy issues?
In short, the left chair provided much visual stimulation. In the next part, we’ll tackle how Dr. Dude convinced me that therapy wasn’t for me.
Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that the right chair faced the left wall—nothing worth noting really…
NOTE: Gee... Which chair do you think I sat on?
Thank you for your time,
Roybert S. Henanigans
P.S. 96: I’ve updated my Contact Me page explaining how you can help me if you choose to. This includes a messaging form, my gmail address, my Twitter account, and a donation button to my Ko-Fi page. I’ll update specifics gradually. If there’s one thing I could ask for above all else, I’d ask for two—then I’d use one of those two to say that the best way to help is to share my work with someone.
On a serious note, thank you so much for reading—it truly means the world to me!