We’re all mad

To quote the singer, Seal: “We’re never gonna survive unless we get a little bit crazy…” What’s interesting about this post is how many respond to it with agreement and relief.

Cristian Mihai

mad“Have I gone mad?”
“I’m afraid so. You’re entirely bonkers. But I’ll tell you a secret. All the best people are.”

Even though most of the times you don’t feel like your’re mad, you feel different. It happens to all of us. Sometimes we feel like there’s an invisible wall between us and the rest of the world. We feel alone, we feel different, we feel as though we’re not good enough. And it’s difficult to accept this. Most of the times, people simply try to find comfort: in their art, in another person, in aimlessly wandering through life.

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Toulla Laid Down Her Gun new fiction by Pat Watson (in progress)

Hello All of You who regularly follow this blog. I’ve begun posting a fiction in progress, the working title of which is “Toulla Laid Down Her Gun…” The posts can be found at http://toullasStory.wordpress.com. I would really like to encourage response from readers with questions and other comments as this tale makes its journey. I’ve posted the first entry here and will provide notices here as well for each new entry at the Toulla blog site. I hope it will generate lots of readers.




Toulla Laid Down Her Gun…©

An original fiction by Pat Watson

(April 18, 2014)

Toulla laid down her gun…in time to come to her senses. It wasn’t that she had no love for the thing, but it was, to her way of thinking, that it had outgrown its usefulness. So she lay it down without a further thought. Just days before, she had it taped to her hand so that even if she should fall asleep it would not fall away from her. But a lot can happen in a few short hours. A lot happens and a lot shouldn’t happen.

In spite of her best attempts. She gave in to the feeling long held that she couldn’t or shouldn’t escape the sins of your family. Lying in a dark, and echoic corner, her hand and the gun one expression, it was what led her to give over and the very thing she had run from until that day.

Tall, bony shouldered and with long-toes on feet that always wanted to go ahead of her to some place, Toulla was a question in her mother’s mind. That distant morning when she woke she knew she had lain with someone, but the amount of cane liquor that rivered through her in the hours previous swept away any clue whether it was her husband or someone depraved enough to have swum that river with her. For it was no secret that once she had jumped into those waters, unquenched, unquenchable, she would predictably be transported to a murderous conviction.

What rage sat coiled waiting to be let loose by cane liquor? And what drunken contortions could have summoned a life such as Toulla’s?

The man she knew as her father was no saint to her mother’s drunken sinner. The two were a fitting pair.

It’s not that she was even afraid of them, since she knew she was of them, but she sensed that she could be otherwise. She never shied away or tried to show them different. But she saw a road away from their barren breakfast table that was her morning wake up call and the banging aftershocks of her everyday life.

Many things happen daily on a farm that tell a child life holds little in the way of gentle spaces. For whatever you grow, eventually you will have to kill, or reap, to eat. So you tend things, while ever mindful not to hold them too near your heart.

This original fiction is the sole property of Patricia Watson. Reproduction in whole or in part cannot be made without the express permission of the author.©


migration, mental illness, and marginalization in Canada

Well worth reading


index Part 2 of “When You’re Strange” is up on the Media Diversified site now. Stuart Hall’s death in February sent me reeling and I found myself writing about him in my essay:

The recent death of Stuart Hall led me to revisit his work and reconsider its impact on my thinking about migration; I now see even more parallels between Hall’s journey and my own. I didn’t know it at the time, but in my senior year of high school I went through a serious depressive episode and have lived with depression ever since. In a 1992 interview with Kuan-Hsing Chen, Hall reflects on his years in Jamaica and admits:

“When I look at the snapshots of myself in childhood and early adolescence, I see a picture of a depressed person. I don’t want to be who they [his parents] want me to be, but I don’t know how to…

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