You can’t entertain away depression

I don’t watch comedy. Not as a rule but just as a trend. I don’t enjoy mere entertainment, I need a sense of significance to enjoy something.

I suspect it’s just one of the differences between the depressed brain and the neurotypical. Let’s say the neurotypical is emotionally at a 6 and comedy raises them to an 8, so it’s pleasurable. I’m at a 2 so it raises me to a 4. Not an effective change.

Working out is quite different. I suspect the benefits of working out are not relative like that. It’s gets a person to an 8 no matter what. The people I know who don’t enjoy cardio are not depressed, they’re probably walking around at the emotional equivalent of a healthy fighting weight, so cardio doesn’t make them feel that much better. Whereas cardio taking me to an 8 is usually coming from a 2 because I’m the emotional equivalent of an anorexic. The effect is massive, it’s cosmic shift in outlook every time.

It’s the same with a lot of things, I just have an incredibly thick skin when it comes to what moves me. The number of times I’ve grimaced as people have told me they just love eating is depressing in it’s own right. Because I just don’t. I can enjoy very special meals, I can be curious about new things, and I have some comfort foods, but I almost never feel like I’m enjoying eating.

Someone remarked when I started eating healthy that it must have been hard because I used to eat ridiculous, outlandishly unhealthy meals. And it really wasn’t. I was trying to enjoy extremely indulgent foods because I wanted to feel the way I saw other people feeling and it didn’t work. In fact I started enjoying eating somewhat when it got gamified by looking for efficient combinations of a dozen elements. It became significant feeling because I was either on track or off, building or decaying. It’s no longer mere entertainment.

Also I suspect people who say they love eating don’t have much else. They’ve probably never had a band they would die for, or a movie they watched every night for a month, their relationships are probably a matter of settling for there.

Or that’s just me being shitty. I fall into the trap of thinking every thinks like me deep down and their external layers are all affectation. When you think about thinking, you can still only think like yourself. A colour blind person could learn to describe the difference between two shades by listening to someone else but that doesn’t mean they can see it any better.

But also on the topic of eating because I’m really into nutrition right now, I suspect a lot of people feel like they love eating because their used to over eating and having their blood sugar yanked around, because they’re stressed out all day, because they skip breakfast, people are just confusing relief with love. If I have a bunch of sugar one day my body tells me I’m starving all the next day because it’s caloric expectations have sky rocketed.

Anyway, you start eating right and I’ll keep writing about depression.

There was a day when a friend was just going off about the sunset and trying to badger me into liking it and I just wanted to hit him with a bat and yell yes it’s beautiful and I feel nothing why can’t you understand that?

Living with depression feels like the ending of Memento, when what’s-his-name says you were so happy I was sure you’d remember. As if the emotional resonance of something should change his brain like a fairy godmother. It’s the ending that he, and all the characters, and the viewers, wanted and expected because it would wrap up the narrative but the brain doesn’t work that way.

Life is much more like Bojack Horseman, one day’s happy ending is the next day’s slightly empty new search for meaning. And Bojack’s despair is brought on by him wanting endings – happy or sad he just doesn’t want to do the work of being in the middle and moving the story along himself.

Life, and depression, and wisdom, and hope, and love, and fear, doesn’t have a story style beginning, middle, end. It’s always beginning, always ending, you’re forever in the middle, forever in decisive moment that can change the next act. When something ends it’s the beginning of your life without that thing. It’s day one again, congratulations.


Singer/songwriter, jerk.

Posted in Depression & Suicide
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