My piece on Laura’s Law – the involuntary outpatient commitment statute being implemented in California – is out in this month’s issue of Pacific Standard. There are two things that I want to note: 1) This is not a comprehensive or wholly unbiased take on involuntary outpatient commitment. This is the story of one county — the … Continue reading On big stories with narrow perspectives
The New Yorker and Mother Jones both have longform pieces out this week on “the Columbine Effect” — that is, the tendency of would-be school shooters to draw inspiration and practical lessons from previous high-profile killings (of which there are, obviously, a growing number). And I think it’s worth comparing the two theses. The Mother Jones piece focuses on … Continue reading Two (wait, three) piece on the psychology of mass shootings
Photo credit: Gary Hannabarger / Corbis Just finished reading Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself, a book-length conversation between David Foster Wallace and David Lipsky, a journalist who profiled Wallace for Rolling Stone during his Infinite Jest tour back in 1996. Wallace committed suicide in 2008, at the age of 46. The transcript of … Continue reading David Foster Wallace: Peeking into the mind of a genius…
1. The Judge has just told my father that he can’t go home yet. Twenty minutes ago he was all over the place. We were waiting in the hallway for someone to summon us into the conference room where the commitment hearings are held, and he was talking about writing a book on mold, and about learning … Continue reading Bipolar Chronicle 4: darkness on the face of the deep
One of the things that happens when your immediate family member is manic, and you are trying to get him hospitalized, is that the nurses, psychiatrists and social workers who are evaluating him will also sort-of evaluate you. They’ll listen for signs of family discord, or for hints that you might be exaggerating things. Why? Because maybe … Continue reading Bipolar Chronicle 3: fishbowl, microscope, spotlight.
Photo credit: Elinor Carucci for the New York Times Magazine Earlier this month: The battle of oncoming traffic: keeping him safe in the weeks leading up to hospitalization — won mostly by luck, but also by hero sister who spent every morning for two weeks straight talking him off ledge. And hero mother who gave … Continue reading Bipolar Chronicle 2: notes on the current war
“Tell your mother, I’m sorry I hid the remote control on her. And I’m sorry this is happening again. But I need my dentures and my wig, because I want to go dancing tonight.” And then: “She won’t mind. She knows I like to dance.” Continue reading Bipolar Chronicle 1: things my dad says when he’s manic