Tuesday, February 21, 2012

With Two You Get Eggroll

From the odd crimes department, this incident occurred on February 13th, in Pennsylvania:

Directly Lifted from the AP story:

"LEECHBURG, Pa. — Police say a western Pennsylvania man who claims to have split personalities confessed to robbing a Chinese restaurant after reading about it in the newspaper and realizing he was the person who did it.
Online court records don't list an attorney for 23-year-old Timothy Beer, of Leechburg, who's been jailed since surrendering in Sunday's robbery of the China King Restaurant about 35 miles northeast of Pittsburgh.
Beer came to the police station Tuesday, saying he wasn't feeling well and "did something stupid."
Beer told police he ordered food and became angry when he perceived the person waiting on him was continuing to speak Chinese. The next thing Beer remembers, he was playing video games at his cousin's home — but says he later realized he committed the robbery when he read about it in Tuesday's Valley News Dispatch."

Some Thoughts:

1. People still read the newspaper?

2. Weekend, 23 years old, Chinese food, and playing video games? I'm gonna guess there may have been some THC involved in this dissociative state.

3. There is no longer "Multiple Personality Disorder." The correct term is "Dissociative Identity Disorder." There was a time (especially in the West Coast) where further diffraction of the personality was considered de rigeur for the therapy--a person would go in with two seperate personalityies and walk out with five or six. This often would occur during hypnotherapy. That is not what is recommended. Re-integration of the dissociative personality should be the goal of therapy in these situations.

4. There are many different types of dissociative states. Ever missed the exit while driving, becuse of "zoning out?" That is a dissociative state. Some psychiatric illnesses, such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, also can have episodes of dissociation (e.g during "flashbacks"). There are amnestic fugue states (where a person may "wake up" wandereing around in a strange city, confused) And, of course, there can be substance induced dissociation. None of these are of the "multiple personality" type-- dissociative identiy disorder.

5. I lifted a Doris Day movie title for this post, but "The Three Faces of Eve." might have been a better choice, and is certainly worth seeing. Does Hollywood present Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) well? "Primal Fear," and "Sybil" (like "Three Faces," also stars Joanne Woodward) do give DID a fair, by Hollywood standards, treatment. "Secret Window," "Fight Club," and "Identity" take the concept and run with it.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Some new tunes

Time to dust of the blogspot and make a genuine attempt at scribbling some notes. Having recently returned from California, in the Bay Area, I was reminded of a couple of tunes, coincidentally with my format of one old and one new.

Of course, San Fran is not new to music. Every aspect of American music has had some time in the city by the bay (Journey, "Lights"). One does not have to more than just sit on the dock (Otis Redding) overlooking the golden gate bridge, to see some of the wonderment that led many a lyricist to wax rhapsodic on this town. And although it has been claimed to be built on rock and roll (Starship, "We Built this City"), it was the flower power days of past for which places like The Haight became synonymous with the entire music scene of the 60's.

So, with that in mind, I will promptly ignore pretty much all of the above genres for the two selections and proceed in a common non sequitur manner!

The story of Johnny Mathis' "Yellow Roses on Her Gown" is true. It was written by a man who grew up initially in the Bay area, and his father had to move out of town, because of his work. If the internet research is to be believed, the Father was a lawyer who had been defending individuals accused of communist activities during the McCarthy days. Again, if the internet is to be believed, this move caused his mother to be unable to go on. Even without the backstory, this is one of the most beautiful storytelling pieces of music ever written, and my favorite of Mathis' songs.

The next tune is new, and appears on an album released in 2011, called Map of the Forbidden City. The musician, however, is far from new, although he has had a near two decade absence from the music scene. The American audience, for the most part, never really got into Thomas Dolby's storytelling style, instead seeing the facade of the mad genius of synthpop, which became part of the roots of techno. In this album, which is a diverse as can be, Thomas crafts an alternative world full of fantastical songs, and shows that he has surely matured as a songwriter. He works with a British colleague of his on this tune, some guy named Knopfler. It is a wonderful bit of songwriting, and one of my favorites of 2011. The tune is not available online very easily, so for those of you with Spotify, may I send you here.