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  • mistermuse 1:05 am on September 10, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , Peter Pan, , , reality, ,   


    My last post featured poetry which one of you commented that you wanted more of. So, it is by popular demand (who am I to deny my adoring readers?) that my Fats friend and I are bound to reply:

    The initials of that reader are mm. No, mistermuse isn’t the mm who asked for more. If you must know, it was magicmermaid, who I assume is a real person (not that mistermuse isn’t real — as real, at least, as magicmermaid….or as you, for that matter). You are real, aren’t you? — if not, just pretend you are, because mistermuse can use the reassurance.


    “Doubt is not a pleasant mental state, but certainty is a ridiculous one.” –Voltaire

    I can live with
    Uncertainty and doubt —
    It’s know-it-alls
    I have my doubts about.


    “I am not young enough to know everything.” –Sir James M. Barrie (author of the play subtitled The Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up)

    Sorry that things didn’t quite Pan out
    (except in Neverland….or thereabout).


    “Scholars esteem knowledge not for its use in attaining other values, but as a value in itself.” –Max Eastman




    “If reality wants to get in touch, it knows where I am.” –Phil Proctor

    But if reality says,
    “Hello there, it’s me” —
    How would you know
    Absent a show of real ID?







    • Notes To Ponder 2:14 am on September 10, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      Most excellent. 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

    • obbverse 3:03 am on September 10, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      Enjoyed the wordplay muchly. May I add an offering on Peter Pan?
      See Ya Late-
      Pity poor pre-adolescent Peter Pan,
      Never fated to become a full grown man-
      Sadly remembered as a smart-mouthed juvenile,
      NOW he’d say ‘kids, don’t ever bait the crocodile.”

      Liked by 2 people

    • Rivergirl 7:15 am on September 10, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      “I’m not young enough to know everything” is a wonderful quote!

      Liked by 3 people

    • magickmermaid 10:34 am on September 10, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks, MisterMuse! I wish everyone would follow my suggestions so readily. 😀
      Yet another reason why I don’t have a webcam. All and sundry would have seen me hopping around the livingroom to the Fats Waller tune! If he can’t make you dance, no one will!

      Liked by 4 people

    • Rosaliene Bacchus 3:13 pm on September 10, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      Love them all, MisterMuse, especially “The Faux Pas of Positive Thinking” 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      • mistermuse 3:36 pm on September 10, 2020 Permalink | Reply

        Likewise, Rosaliene. I was kind of partial to “Know Weigh Hose Say”….but when José say “No way!”, I changed my mind.

        Liked by 1 person

    • annieasksyou 11:11 pm on September 10, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      When magickmermaid, the Siren
      Called mistermuse to play
      The result was a fun environ
      So, “yes way,” I say.

      Liked by 3 people

      • mistermuse 12:47 am on September 11, 2020 Permalink | Reply

        I didn’t know you’re a poet —
        Or should I say, a poetess.,,,
        But any way you weigh it,
        You’re no damsel in distress.

        Liked by 1 person

    • calmkate 2:14 am on September 11, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      very clever … I’m sure I’ve asked for more overtime … guess I dont have the magic touch!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Elizabeth 4:56 pm on September 12, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      I am not sure if I like the first one best or not. Better not be sure!

      Liked by 2 people

    • mistermuse 6:09 pm on September 12, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      I’m not sure how to respond to that, Elizabeth — but I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt. 😉


    • masercot 8:45 am on September 14, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      The outcome is most obscure
      unless I’m sure

      When my confidence is at its height
      I probably haven’t done anything right…

      Liked by 2 people

    • mistermuse 11:42 am on September 14, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      Compared to Trump,
      you’re ahead of the game —
      he NEVER does anything right
      and he’s never ever to blame.

      Liked by 1 person

    • arekhill1 10:32 am on September 15, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      If there ever was a year that reality got in touch, it’s this one, Sr. Muse.

      Liked by 2 people

    • mistermuse 3:49 pm on September 15, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      I fear the worst of the year is yet to come after Nov. 3, no matter the election results.


    • Ana Daksina 11:41 pm on October 5, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      Really is as really does, so I’m really glad I’m not really sure that I’m real. But here’s some reassurance anyway, for ya: “There, there, dear…” 🤤

      Liked by 1 person

  • mistermuse 12:03 am on October 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , creativity, depression, , , , , mental health, original sin, , reality,   


    Countless studies have shown that people who suffer from depression have more accurate world views than nondepressed people. Depressed people do not nurture the cheering illusion that they can control the course of their lives. And they understand, all too acutely, the basic conditions of existence: that their lifespan is just a brief blip in the cold sweep of history, that suffering is real and ongoing, that they and all the people they love are going to die. That outlook is known as depressive realism. Depressed people might be unhappy, but–when it comes to these big-picture, existential matters–they are generally more right than the rest of us. –Kathryn Schulz, author of BEING WRONG

    • * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

    The National Institute of Mental Health lists six forms of depressive disorder/depression: major depression, persistent depressive disorder, psychotic depression, postpartum depression, seasonal affective disorder, and bipolar disorder (aka manic-depressive illness). NOT listed is Depressive realism.

    I have never given much thought to depression (in the listed sense), probably because no one I’ve known (that I’m aware of) suffered from depression. However, the Schulz quotation strikes a chord because I’ve “suffered” from realism for years (since I’ve been free of inherited Catholicism), but without becoming depressed as a result….though heaven knows I have good reason to be (and perhaps should be), given that I “understand, all too acutely,” the reality Schulz cites. Why am I not (by N.I.M.H. standards) depressed? Why isn’t everyone depressed?

    There are palliatives available before depression might come into play — for some, there is no shortage of such catholicons as drugs, alcoholism, power addiction, and yes, religion, to hold the wolf of reality at bay or serve as “the cheering illusion” that all’s well that ends well. Who knows, maybe all does end well, after all….but, given the mean time in the meantime, you could’ve fooled me. Life seems to imitate a product designed and built (sooner or later) to fail, but am I depressed? No….and, I take it, neither are you. Why not?

    Well, it’s not as if life were an unmitigated disaster, that’s why — at least, not for most of us. The half-full part of the glass, I wouldn’t miss for the world. Even if our futures get short shrift, if our talents go under-appreciated, if we see ignorance, arrogance and greed thrive — even if love goes south — was it not “better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all?” No matter what is terribly wrong with the world (thanks to both the Creator, if any, and the created), we see in small children not original sin, but original innocence (perhaps our original innocence), the sheer joy of being alive, the promise of hope….and we hope to God or Fate that their promise doesn’t go up in smoke.

    After due consideration, my take-away from all of this is that if we really want to get it right, do not go gentle into that good night*; there is a more challenging way: depressive realism. Think about it. Rage, rage against the dying of the light.*

    *from the poem by Dylan Thomas



    • Mél@nie 5:22 am on October 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Depression is a real illness(disease), unfortunately… completely different from sad(down) “seasons” like blues or spleen that we all experience now and then… what we call in French “le mal de vivre” = the difficulty of living…

      • * *

      I love Dylan Thomas poems… 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      • mistermuse 6:33 am on October 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks for the translation of that four-word expression – somehow it sounds much better in French than in English. 🙂 Sometimes I wish I hadn’t let my high school French fall by the wayside – such a beautiful language!

        Liked by 2 people

        • Mél@nie 4:25 am on November 2, 2015 Permalink

          avec plaisir! 🙂 btw, we’re proud of our American son-in-law who is fluent in French after almost 18 months over here… he’s considered kinda “an intellectual”(LOL!) by his American folks… 🙂

          Liked by 2 people

    • Don Frankel 5:50 am on October 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Dr. Don says Kathryn Schulz suffered from Depression. Most Depression goes untreated as most people who suffer from it have no awareness of it. The only time people seek treatment is when they can’t function. If you’re able to get up, do your ADLs and got to work well most people figure they’re okay. But they’re not. Dr. Don is convinced that all Alcoholism and Drug use is caused by people self medicating their mental illness. Just remember that Dr. Don is unlicensed in all 50 States and anywhere else for that matter. And, he only takes cash so most people don’t listen to him. What can we say other than quel dommage.

      Liked by 2 people

      • mistermuse 7:08 am on October 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        After having read Kathryn Schulz’s book, I have to say that I’m on the same page in almost every respect….so much so that if she suffered from depression, I highly recommend it (or at least what grew out of it) for the rest of us. As for the rest of what Dr. Don says, I defer to his greater knowledge of the subject (of actual depression); his analysis seems on the money (cash only).

        Quel dommage, indeed.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Midwestern Plant Girl 6:00 am on October 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I’m not only a member of the depressive reality group, I’m the president! 😉
      Great post! I am trying to cancel my membership to this club, I’ve deleted my TV, stopped listening to radio, but reality keeps creeping in. On the outside, no one knows about my secret club status. I guess I popped the cork on that now. 😃

      Liked by 2 people

      • Joseph Nebus 10:23 pm on November 1, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        I suppose they just keep losing your cancellation notice at the depressive reality club. Figures that would keep going wrong.

        Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 7:11 am on October 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I’ll drink to that! But your secret is safe with me – I won’t tell a soul. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Jane 5:36 am on October 31, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I can certainly relate to the quote and your own thoughts on this. I am prone to depressive realism. I also tend to be someone who soaks up the feelings of those around me. It is difficult for me not to see the pain of others and want to relieve it. My therapy for depressive realism is spending time in nature and also being proactive when I can. So if I can see a way I can help to improve something or give relief to someone, I give it my best shot. Nature is a soothing drug for me though. 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      • mistermuse 1:12 pm on October 31, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        And I, in turn, can relate to your comment, Jane (in fact, I’m starting to think we might be related). Seriously, though, spending time in nature has done wonders for me as well, and giving relief to someone can be encapsulated in one word: empathy (politicians, take note!).

        Liked by 1 person

    • arekhill1 10:36 am on October 31, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Whenever I feel the drab side of life pressing in, I take comfort in the thought that anything that ever happened to anyone else could happen to me, but most of it won’t. Then I have a beer.

      Liked by 2 people

      • mistermuse 1:26 pm on October 31, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        An admirable philosophy, indeed. Some people might say it would be better to pray, but beer does just as much good and contributes more to the economy. Besides, you can’t drink prayer while watching football.


    • Don Frankel 10:51 am on November 1, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Depression can definitely give people great insights. I’m thinking Hemingway here.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Arkenaten 3:33 am on November 2, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        Except that he shot himself … one ‘insight’ he may have gotten wrong?


      • Mél@nie 4:28 am on November 2, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        Don, I love Hemingway’s works and he loved… France! 🙂 btw, Ernest’s medical record was publicly released in 1991 and it did confirm his diagnosis: hemochromatosis – an incurable genetic disease that causes physical damage, severe psychiatric and neurological disorders, which might explain suicides in the Hemingway family: his father, his brother, his sister…


        Liked by 1 person

        • mistermuse 7:23 am on November 2, 2015 Permalink

          I can highly recommend taking time to click on & read Mel@nie’s post (above) to anyone with even a moderate interest in Hemingway. I read it when first posted, and found it fascinating!


    • mistermuse 7:15 pm on November 1, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Don, your mention of Hemingway led me to check for other notables who are “presumed to have had depression” (according to Wikipedia). Among those on the list are Woody Allen, Hans Christian Andersen, Julian Assange (of WikiLeaks fame), Barbara Bush, Truman Capote, Ray Charles, Winston Churchill, Joseph Conrad, Rodney Dangerfield, Larry David, Charles Dickens, Bob Dylan, Wm. Faulkner, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Audrey Hepburn, Franz Kafka, Stephen King, David Letterman, Meriwether Lewis, Abraham Lincoln, Herman Melville, Michelangelo, Marilyn Monroe, Bill Murray….and that’s just the first half of the alphabet, which for some reason doesn’t include Don Frankel and mistermuse. Maybe if we tell Wikipedia how depressed we are that we’re not on the list, they’ll include us.

      Liked by 1 person

    • literaryeyes 1:03 pm on November 2, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Depressive realism isn’t a mental illness. It may be a sign of health, and so is Positive realism, which you write about. They’ve got to be balanced. Depression is a serious, sometimes fatal disease, and very painful to experience. As someone who’s been through Major Depression, I say, count me out of the fan club!

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 1:42 pm on November 2, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      In hindsight, the last sentence of the first paragraph (after the opening quote) of my post probably should have included the words (“, and properly so,”) after “NOT listed” to make it clear that Depressive realism not only isn’t on the list, but doesn’t belong on the list. However, since you agree that Depressive realism is a sign of health, I don’t quite get why you (or Midwestern Plant Girl, for that matter) would want out of the club! 🙂 In any case, as someone who’s been through Major Depression, perhaps if would be helpful to others to relate here (or on your own blog) HOW you got through it, unless it’s too painful to re-visit. Be that as it may, may I extend sincere congratulations (if that’s the right word) for having done so.


    • linnetmoss 6:30 am on November 4, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I’m reminded of the Oxford don who when asked whether his atheism wasn’t terribly depressing, observed that he was looking forward to a good lunch 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 9:29 am on November 4, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      ….not unlike arekhill1 (eleven comments ago) having a beer.


    • RMW 12:10 pm on November 22, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Don’t wish to make light of anybody else’s debilitating illness but I’ve been diagnosed with clinical depression (whatever that is) on at least three occasions… I refuse to take medication as artificial happiness doesn’t appeal to me. I’ve learned that dragging myself out the door and walking as far as my legs will take me is a great antidote. But other times I sit with it and let it do its thing… you can learn a lot about yourself. A glass of wine doesn’t hurt either, but over-indulging can definitely make it worse. For me it’s a matter of balancing the good with the bad… I know that wheel will be turning and the sun will come out at some point… and you can’t have the day without the night!

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 4:52 pm on November 22, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I appreciate your comment. I feel as if I have a better understanding of depression since writing this post, thanks to yours and previous responses. I sometimes wonder why I don’t fall into depression (knock wood), given that I have a pretty fatalistic attitude toward life, but maybe that itself is the reason. When you don’t look at the world through rose-colored glasses, what you see is the reality you’re not surprised to see, as opposed to being overwhelmed by it. I suppose that makes me a cynic, but at least I’m a cynic with a sense of humor. 😦 🙂


  • mistermuse 1:20 pm on March 21, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Byron Katie, , , reality   



    When you argue with reality, you lose — but only 100% of the time. -Byron Katie

    So, what’s the big deal?
    Life is a blank check.
    Just sign on the line and leave
    experience fill in the rest.

    So, what’s the “it” that Katie did? Made me assume that Byron Katie is a man, that’s what.
    Then I found that he is a she (Byron Katie is the pen name of Byron Katherine Mitchell).


    Don’t believe every thing you think. -Byron Katie

    I think,
    therefore I
    don’t know
    what to think.

    Therefore, I
    think what
    I think I
    know, I don’t.

    So, what
    do you
    think? You don’t
    want to know.





    • arekhill1 1:31 pm on March 21, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Coincidentally, I was thinking about Kate Upton.


      • mistermuse 3:03 pm on March 21, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        Ricardo, I notice that CAHILL–U.S. MARSHALL is on Turner Classic Movies in a little over an hour. Just thought I’d let you know, because watching your namesake kick ass should help you take your mind off Kate Upton for a while.


    • scifihammy 1:47 pm on March 21, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      The title made me think of the What Katy Did books 🙂
      I think life is better without over-thinking too much. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 3:17 pm on March 21, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Maybe that’s my problem. I’ll have to think about it.


    • Michaeline Montezinos 8:05 am on March 22, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I think that I will leave thinking to the experts since I am not an expert on thinking very well. At least that is what I may think. 🙂


    • mistermuse 11:41 am on March 22, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Thinking can indeed be very confusing – not to mention, too much like work. 😦


  • mistermuse 2:20 pm on December 14, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , innocence, reality, ,   


    I always feel young people are innocent. [They] have a certain beautiful innocence to them that’s touching and remarkable to see. –Woody Allen

    Christmas is for kids. As truisms go, that is one I find especially valid. It seems to me that even if you’re not Christian, it won’t hurt your young children to believe in Santa Claus. They’ll have to contend with the real world soon enough (there could be worse introductions to reality than the day they discover the truth about Santa). So, while they may, let them be innocent and without sin and believe in pure, unalloyed being loved. Isn’t that the idea that Christmas is supposed to represent?

    I may be old, but I’m not too old to remember the thrill of Christmas mornings as a boy in the early 1940s. What did I know of the World War raging a world away, where young men of my age little more than a decade earlier, were now dying like sacrificial lambs because innocence was foreign to the forces of time. Life is short. Life as a young child is short beyond belief, although wishful thinking can extend the warranty indefinetly. I wouldn’t count on it.

    • Ricardo 8:26 pm on December 14, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      But now that Fox has made Santa’s ethnicity an issue. I think I’ll be penning “I’m Dreaming of a White Santa” shortly, Sr. Muse


    • mistermuse 9:43 pm on December 14, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      I hadn’t heard about the Fox/Santa issue, Ricardo. I’d check it out, but I can’t bear to watch Fox, no matter how much I could use a good laugh. In fact, if I knew Hell consisted of watching Fox News for all eternity, I (and maybe even you) would immediately start being so good that Santa would give me a sleigh ride straight to heaven’s gate when my time comes.


    • Don Frankel 11:01 am on December 16, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      I can’t remember too well but I don’t think I was told that Santa was a real guy just an idea of giving. And yes this is a lot easier to read and you are half linked to SWI so the next time your daughter comes over have her finish the job.


    • mistermuse 12:03 pm on December 17, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      I very much appreciate your suggestion, Don, but after giving it some thought, I probably won’t do that. I realize it would invite more traffic if I did, but at my age and stage of life, I already don’t have enough time for the things that matter to me the most….so, I’d rather just keep it simple, even at the expense of the fame & fortune I believe would surely come my way with a little more push on my part (I also believe in Santa Claus and have deep existential dialogues & exchanges with him, as you can see in my Dec. 16 post).


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