Sometimes you go out to eat. You choose a restaurant you heard was nice. You go in, get seated, and the waiter is extremely rude towards you. And now you go out and buy a gun, start subscribing to military magazines, become a loner at work, and begin listening to a lot of fringe podcasts.
I've had COUNTLESS patients tell me some variety of this story. Sad but true, I must report. What can we do about it? How can we reach out to these people and help them find their way back to humanity?
Hi, I'm Dr. Peter Swilling, discredited psychiatrist who is possessed by Friend Behr.
Maybe you are acquainted with someone like the person I described above. Maybe you are that person. I am here for you. I love you. I want you. I need you. Not so much true as that it needed saying.
The wonderful thing about fringe podcasts is that they exist! Yay! They are definitely worth listening to because they have the answers YOU are looking for, provided you listen to enough fringe podcasts to find the one that suits you. Let us do an experiment!
You are home alone in your frumpy house clothes. No one can identify with you. Even when you reach out, the world is harsh and cold towards you and your interests. What can help? Fringe podcasts. Somewhere there is one that you can truly identify with.
Here is a countdown type top ten list of the ten most fringe podcasts I listened to this week:
10. You Pee Beautifully. This one was a doozy. The host, Shawn, spends most of the podcast talking about his urination habits. He gets into how he improved his overall "force flow," his "elapsed time in bathroom stats," and what he calls "the aesthetic quality." A lot of people call in to talk about their urination habits. Everyone has a good time for no good reason. If this suits you, God help you.
9. Git Me a Gun and Shoot Up Sumtin'. I could barely understand what the host was saying. It always sounded like he was eating a hamburger and shoving as much of it in his mouth at one time as he could while speaking on the fringe podcast. One of the frequent words I could make out was "fuck" and a common phrase I was able to decipher was "They ain't got those rights. Ain't earned 'em."
8. A Shithole Called Constantinople. This is an hour a week of a man who never gives his name ranting about what a shithole Constantinople is. His raw intensity is something worth looking into from a psychiatric perspective.
7. If They Want to Protest Something, They can Protest My Ass. I recommend having a strong drink before listening to this fringe podcast. Host Jules Jerome is apparently upset about protests of any kind. He wants people to "settle down and take what they give you." He repeatedly offers to come to the homes of protesters and show them his bare behind and demand that they protest it. He also has some nice recipes for wintertime spiced rum drinks that he goes back to from time to time while Jimmy Buffett music plays in the background (although I think it is Jules Jerome singing along to just the instrumental parts on a recording but I could be wrong).
6. Complaints About the Sexualization of Flipper. This postcast is hosted by a woman named Shirley. She is talking about Flipper the dolphin that was on television in the 1960s. She is quite bothered by how, according to her claims, Flipper was sexualized on the show. She believes this led to the moral decline currently on display in America. She uses a lot of 1950s-style euphemisms on the podcoast. I think she might be quite old.
5. Thirteen Reasons Why I Support Tulsi Gabbard for President. Yes, this one is still active. There are three hosts, Tigger, Brian, and Joanne. They all have something to say about U.S. presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard. They broadcast for two hours a day every day and they never get tired of talking, believe me. I've listened to see if any of them stop to take a breath. They do not.
4. Secrets of the Universal Core. This one has a somewhat misleading title. Mostly what it seems to be about is the host, Chuck Wilson's complicated plan for having sexual intercourse with the wives of a series of prominent men. The reason for this is because he believes that something called the "penile residual exchange rate" is connected to the "vital response universal core." It took me about fifteen episodes of this fringe podcast to figure out what he was on about. Basically, there are nine kinds of powerful men, according to Chuck Wilson. Each of these has a piece of the "puzzle" of the meaning of life. It is supposedly transmitted through the semen, which allows the energy of powerful men to be passed on to their sons (which is why the ONLY worthwhile people in the world come from established families, Ibid). It also is transmitted through the mother, the wife, or mistress, or whatever. The "semenic residue" remains for several weeks and CAN be picked up by others who put their penis (or at least three fingers) into the same vagina. This one will trouble you.
3, Raw Meat has Alien DNA. This one kind of speaks for itself. It is about what it states to be about. According to the host, who never gives his name, all "meat" contains "raw alien DNA" before it is cooked. The cooking process removes the alien DNA. What happens if we consume alien DNA? "Talk to someone who eats a lot of sushi." That's what he says over and over on the podcast. The real peak of the podcast is when the host begins what he calls "countdown minutes." During this time he begins counting back from 100, one number at a time, until he gets to "zero." And then what happens? He asks you, "Imagine if this hadn't been a drill. Cook your meat."
2. Everything You See in the Movies is Fake. Thomas Browning goes to great lengths in this semi-regular fringe podcast in which he presents evidence as to why the things shown in Hollywood movies aren't actual events, but fakes, made up stories, and re-enactments. He takes great pains to tell us about this and in presenting his lengthy collection of evidence to prove his point. He seems completely unaware of the fact that 91% of Americans already understand this, although quite a few forget from time to time, so this fringe podcast might have some value. He charts this high because of how absolutely earnest he is in his presentation of evidence.
1. The Transmissions are One Step Closer to Heaven. This one really tripped me up. It involves a woman named Clara who speaks in a scratchy voice, sounding like a ghost or some kind of creature, telling us how listening to her podcast will bring you "one step closer to heaven." There is something hypnotic, as well as nauseating, about her voice. She is so calm and serene, but then she says things like "Puckenhamner was never going to become a general in the United States Army" and "The flowers in springtime compete with the robins for the sunlight." These statements are not related to anything else she is going on about, as far as I can tell. This podcast might help you if you are a woman who lives alone and drinks a lot of wine.
These are just a sampling of what is out there that you COULD be accessing today through the magic of Smartphones and apps. The fringe podcasts can be accessed via telephone (not 1983 phone) or computer. You can look them up on the Internet and then go to the "URL" and listen. Sometimes there are years of back podcasts, so you could spend a full week listening to nothing but a man talking about how meat contains alien DNA. This is good for your mental state. Doing things like that. It is. It really is.
Dr. Peter Swilling