XXX’s Psychoanalytic Diagnosis

Patient                                                             Doctor

XXX                                                             Lorna May

Session N.1

Presenting problems and situation: 

XXX is an almost middle aged man with the heart of a child. As all musicians, he’s unstable and an asshole. XXX’s relationship with life is very much bound to his relationship with art.

PURITANISM seems to be the main concern. We might describe him as an “artistic puritan”. This remark is based on the foundations of his taste in music and cinema.

XXX presents a compulsive obsessive interest on whatever is related to the Jazz age.

An art critic, studying his case from a farther angle, might end up with the conclusion that as a jazz musician, his puritanism is only praiseworthy. XXX, being gifted of an inhuman perfectionism and a totalitarian control over the use of his hands (normally linked with classic pianists) doesn’t obviously want to be influenced (in worst case scenarios – contaminated) by other music genres. His rejection to art discovery is an early sign of senile dementia.

The same applies to cinema. XXX’s film education, unsurprisingly, also dates back to the Jazz age (note his shock after watching Mulholland Drive). The only modern director that XXX appreciates is Woody Allen, we presume the reason being the use of jazz music in his pictures, his fascination with neurotic women (probably linked to the complicated relationship with his mother) and the similar personality traits with the author.

The same puritan attitude applies to his circle of friends and lifestyle. We can finally agree, that XXX lies unthreatened, in his self-made bed of wine and roses, living in denial of reality.

His puritanism also extends to his romantic relationships. An example being his 10 years commitment to a “Blue Jasmine” kind of woman, someone who is  nearly always putting on a pretence caused by insecurities about her fading beauty which are continuously emphasised by her need to be hidden from bright lights and her need for sexual admiration by men.

In this specific scenario, by puritanism, we mean XXX’s need of comfort and stability, which was tragically provided by an uncomfortable and unstable woman.

After all, a golden cage of appearances, leaving XXX (a man who finds catharsis in love) emotionally raw.

Current Symptoms/Behaviors: 

XXX has recently came into contact with a young actress by the name of Lorna May. A woman who’s not excellent at anything, but good at everything.

The gods threw the dice – Lorna found XXX when she needed music in her life, and XXX found Lorna when he needed cinema in his.

Just to put things into perspective; we might fairly describe Lorna May as a fearless wonderer. An art time-traveller, an hedonist – opposed to puritan XXX.

Her open-mindedness at first enchanted our patient who soon became loving and a little over-exited, most recently showing signs of unassertiveness and fear (there’s only one fear and that is the fear of the unknown/ignorance).

It’s only logical to assume that the patient has been deeply moved by this free-spirited woman, artistically and emotionally.

Therefore, we categorise XXX’s sudden change of behaviour as xenophobic.

The patient presents a subtle mix of fear and pleasure by the emblematic nature of this woman, an actress, a thief, who steals souls and makes them hers…who influences/contaminates XXX’s puritan persona with art and kisses.

It’s with no doubt that we say that the patient is in a cloudy state-of-mind for the time being. This momentarily hesitation and perhaps scepticism could be translated into oblivion.

The patient has shown desire to drastic lifestyle changes – mostly to accommodate other’s visions, we’d assume. Changes which don’t fit at all with his nature.

We fear suicide.

Treatment:

Prozac – 20 mg once a day

Coffee – one New York mug a day

Cinema – one seance per week

Switch poems to prose

Substance Abuse Treatment History: 

None reported.

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By Dr. Lorna May

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Know-How

1147
Beatlemania in full swing in 1964

I’ve always had the misconception that a person who reads many books is an intelligent person. And then something struck me. The question is: How?

How do you read books?

Were you one of those straight-A students? Were you the “nerd” of the school? Maybe that’s not such a good sign.

These star pupils were praised by parents and teachers but all they really did, was flick through history books without questioning a thing.

Well, my grandma does pretty much the same. She spends hours watching unspeakable telenovelas, serves you tea, then sums the latest episode up in fanciful detail.

It’s true, we’re not talking about Tolstoy here, but how would it be if my grandma told you the story of Anna Karenina?

[ Anna Karenina was a married aristocrat bla-bla-bla who has an affair with the charming Count Vronsky bla-bla-bla she leaves her husband but in the meantime bla-bla-bla. Anna becomes isolated and anxious while Vronsky goes out and about bla-bla-bla. The situation is unbearable, Anna commits suicide. ]

Would you like another cup of tea, darling?

In short; the novel explores topics like politics, religion, morality, gender and social class, but my nanna likes the gossip of it. If you take Tolstoy’s masterpiece that way, it’s true that it doesn’t fall too far from tea-time telenovelas.

How do you listen to music?

Let’s take The Beatles as an example. Why? Because there’s even a thing out there called Beatlemania. That’s right, I’m talking about maniacs. The delirious Beatles fan club.

Nothing compares to the hysteria that The Beatles created in the height of their careers in the 60s. They were mostly teens peeing their pants. Screaming schoolgirls pulling their hair out.

The term “fan” comes from the latin “fanaticus”, meaning “insanely but divinely inspired” or “marked by excessive enthusiasm and often intense uncritical devotion”.

There’s a link between how my grandma reads Anna Karenina and Beatlemania.

How do you watch films?

Even movie-goers come in two flavours these days; “film geeks” and “cinephiles” (or movie snobs). The first preferring contemporary films based on comics or video games and the latter, being lovers of “the classics” and modernist or avant-garde cinema, up to the present, and tend to scorn geek favourites.

Film geeks are almost religious creatures, loyal market followers. They could even come off as sweet as they light up their Christmas crib with Batman instead of baby Jesus.

They know it all about their heroes; background, quotes, missions, superpowers and outfits. Meanwhile, a cinephile contemplates a slow-motion caress, heartbroken in a blurry romance.

All this considered, we can arrive at one important point. However you read books, listen to music, or watch films – never lose your child-like enthusiasm.