Diary of an Angry Psychologist: Wednesday’s Appointments

by Timothy Gager

--Alarm clock, 7:22 AM

Hit snooze button three times.
Wake up.

--Kate, 40, 8:45 AM

I don't know why Kate sees me. She says she solves her own problems sitting in the woods. Kate tells me she is a sexual animal and wants to make love everyday under the canopy of trees. She thinks she is a tribeswoman and would like to mate with all the tribesmen. Sex makes her angry when she's finished. She twirls her hair when she tells me that, tells me she thinks we should go to the woods together. I suggest her seeing a female therapist and her response is, “I've had a few intimate relationships with women.”

Kate says she was there the other day and spoke to a squirrel. What did it say? All it said was, “Hi.” She told the squirrel she loved it and placed it on her lap. Why can't people be like that squirrel is what I ask her. Seems like she related to the squirrel better than she did people. She dreamed that she and the squirrel were lovers. Then the hour ran out.

--Thomas, 47, 10:45 AM

I'd like to kill Thomas. Thomas can't commit to anything. He's lonely yet he pushes people away. He's funny, yet he has a mean streak. He gasps for love the way he gasps for air. He has asthma. Thomas only wants women he can't have. Thomas should live in a protected box. He feels that if he makes love to a woman every three months he'll be fine. Thomas doesn't realize that women might develop emotional attachments. During sessions, Thomas says, “fuck it” or “fuck me” a lot. I can see why Thomas has scars over his eyes; he's been in a lot of battles. Sometimes he confronts me about his lack of progress in therapy. Thomas doesn't realize that it should all come from within. Thomas doesn't realize that within him is a soulless black hole. He always uses phases like “when I finally hunker down”. I'd like to kill Thomas.

--Lunch, 11:30

Cold sandwich.
Pulpy Apple.
Juice Box.

--Bradley, 56, 12:15 PM

I feel that Bradley tossed his life into the gutter in his twenties because it was easier than focusing on a job or an education. Bradley wanted to be a helicopter pilot, an unrealistic expectation from someone who was only selling pants at Tello's and spending his paycheck on booze and heroin. At the time, according to him, he had completely recovered, made it to an entire year without the stuff, but he never made his goal of flying choppers—so he relapsed. Bradley tells me his parents hate him. Hated him all the way to their death, but that's what you get when you burn your bridges, steal and fuck with a person's trust. You end up at a homeless shelter in your forties. You end up here with me in your fifties. It's too damn late for Bradley.

--New Patient: Pearl, 48, 3:00 PM

Pearl is not her real name. Her real name is Stella. Pearl used a fake name to get past the intake screeners. Pearl is my ex-wife. She is taking this hour to speak to me since I've not returned her calls in months. She needs a favor. This summer can I take the kids and the dog for a few months? She bought our kids a dog. The dog is driving her crazy. I can take the kids but not the dog. She stomps her foot. The kids tell me it ate the television remote. The dog needs it's own therapist. It is crazy. The kids are in their twenties, they should be able to be by themselves AND take care of the dog. “If you had only...then....and they'd know responsibility…dog…and…blah…blah...” I'm thinking about my current relationship. Now that one is a sweet, sweet pacific island. Pearl is going away on a honeymoon. I tell her to call me soon.

--Ethan, 14, 4:00 PM

Ethan is the youngest patient I've ever had. He is bi-polar. He has been ordered to see me because he told his teacher he thinks about suicide. He is very specific in his fantasies about flying and jumping off bridges. I am helpless to prevent this. There are bridges in Boston and his private school is very close to them. His parents come in the last fifteen minutes. Usually one of them cries.

Ethan reminds me of my own brother. When my brother was a teenager he took a handful of my mother's valium and washed it down with some Old Crow that was in my parents liquor cabinet. When the ambulance came the red lights rotated through our living room every two seconds. I know this because I counted the time. With Ethan, I just want to grab him and either hug or shake him---tell him not to do it, please don't do it. Sometimes I cry too.

--Commute, 5:15 PM

Extra hour of traffic,
Listen to Jay-Z,