Billy Joe McAllister called. Said glub, glub, glub.

I don’t even know how many years it’s been now, but I’m going to say circa 2014. Back when my boss, fmr., and I sat next to each other. I don’t know who decided THAT was a good idea, although I know it seems to make sense that a supervisor would sit next to his, you know, staff.

But my boss, fmr., has the ADD, and I have the ADD, and the problem with two people with the ADD is they can, you know, lose focus. And that is why some days my boss, fmr., and I would get off on a tangent that would last 32 hours. There was another copy editor at work at the time, called The Other Copy Editor, who did NOT have the ADD. She also sat right next to us, and she lasted there about a year.

Yeah.

My point is, one day I got on the pressing topic of the very old song Ode to Billy Joe. As you do.

For no discernible reason, my boss insisted they weren’t throwing a baby off the bridge in that song.

Everybody knows they threw a baby off the bridge in that song.

This devolved into an 8-hour argument between boss, fmr., and me, while The Other Copy Editor surreptitiously perused jobs on Glassdoor.

Can you look for jobs on Glassdoor? Whatever.

I told this story to you at the time, and we spent all day talking about this ridiculous song, and punctuating every thought with, “Pass the biscuits, please” and since then June 3rd’s become the Official Holiday of Book of June®.

And that’s why I mention it. Hi.

Other than that, hey, country, how’s your country? Geez. Things are … why are things so bad? We ought to just throw ourselves off the Tallahatchee Briiiiidge.

Speaking of which, there is a blogger who is way famouser than me, seeing as I am not famous at all. But she is, at least in blog world, and she seems to be passing through a crisis. I saw that in a movie once. One of the characters said, “I am passing through a crisis” and then she dabbed perfume on her temples. She was French so she got away with it.

It’s concerning. She seems to be doing not well at all. And what I keep hearing is, “She’s just doing it for the attention.”

Let’s discuss.

I enjoy attention. I find it exhilarating. Attention is my bag.

I remember back when I was single [Dear June: You are still single.] I remember back when I was first single, I dated this guy for just a few months. I featured him here a few times. Once he was at a store and someone recognized him. This was when I had probably twice the readers I do now, so it was more likely. Now I could be dating George Jetson and no one would take notice.

I like how my exciting celebrity example is George Jetson.

Anyway, he called me and told me being recognized was “intoxicating.” That was right about when I stopped liking him, but the POINT is it happens. At least it does for me. And my date, fmr.

Speaking in front of a group is like a high for me. I like it.

I have all the qualities people don’t like. A love of attention, a flair for drama, a quick temper. Hey, I’m still single! Why?

But I’m saying this because as someone who loves attention, I don’t get why saying you’re depressed or suicidal is dismissed as wanting attention. I’m trying to put myself in her place and it seems to me if you felt that way you’d feel extremely desperate. Like, you’d feel at the end of your rope and at the same time not wanting to feel that way. So wouldn’t you, you know, tell people in hopes you could get relief?

Anyway that’s how I see it. I seem to notice people get angry and dismissive when other people are passing through a crisis [dabs perfume]. Is it because they have never felt that way? Or because they kept it to themselves when they did and don’t see why everyone doesn’t do that? What’s the anger? Is it fear that it will happen to them?

Why do people sit around the lunch table and dismiss suicide and someone not having a lick of sense? Pass the biscuits, please.

Girl, what’s happened to your appetite?
June

61 Comments

  1. Lovely post, Coot.
    Just now trailblazing over here because I’ve been distracted with life. I don’t like it when I have to life and people. I would rather be over here. I have a question, why does old P up there think you aren’t being sympathetic? Also IT IS A FREAKING SONG not a manifesto.
    Also and too, did you ever see the movie with Robbie Benson and Glynnis whatshername? I think they were throwing flowers off the bridge and then he threw himself off the bridge. He was gay. He was a homersectional as my grandad would have said.
    Ok. I am done. Are there any gluten-free biscuits?

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    1. Not only go fuck yourself, really truly go fuck yourself. I’ve written about this song for YEARS, you know I like it, and you’re looking for a reason to be a humorless fucking bitch. No one cares what you have to say, you useless damp ham.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. There are many songs that have deeper meanings, were written by trailblazers of many forms, and were written to make important statements about things happening in the time in which those songs were written.
      I guess no one can appreciate any music (or book or movie or anything for that matter) for ANY reason other than the reasons the person created it aren’t allowed in your view. I guess we all better research every thing we enjoy in order to enjoy it the right way.

      I didn’t know everything had to be THIS serious.

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    3. Oh Penelope, hon, where to start.

      First, this post does not make fun of Bobbi Gentry. I admire your diligence in defending her honor but it is not necessary here. You can stand down.

      Second, your charm free strident tone is just over the top in this (and any) instance.

      Who hurt you that you felt it appropriate or kind to be nasty to someone on her own tongue-in-cheek blog post?

      Some things just aren’t that serious ‘lope.

      Bless your heart.

      Like

    4. Penelope, I hope you educate yourself and learn that even feminists and liberals can have a sense of humor. Notice I avoided use of the condescending word edumacate.

      Liked by 1 person

    5. Also? Who are you, ee cummings?
      Maybe you should edumacate yourself on basic rules of grammar and punctuation.
      It’s easier not to capitalize and use proper punctuation, though, I get it.

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  2. Wow, I really appreciate you saying that about the blogger and the attention. It was really upsetting to read yesterday and I was starting to think I was the only one who felt that way. I mean, I had to stop reading her because it’s just too uncomfortable to watch the decline, but I also have clinical depression and I know it’s anything but rational.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I always get carsick. My husband never ever gets nauseous. He really thought it was all in people’s heads. On our honeymoon he kept driving fast around the curves of the mountain road to get to the cabin we stayed at although I kept saying I felt sick. Then I puked. Right then he knew. It has to be the same with mental illness. People just don’t get it.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. As someone who has both bipolar (type 2) and migraines, I wish somehow that every person on earth could experience a bad migraine and clinical depression at least once, so that there would be more understanding and compassion from those who don’t know how bad it is. Of course, this is true of everything–anxiety disorder, body-shaming, eating disorders, racism…
    As an aside, I’d like to start a movement that would replace the term “mental illness” with something more accurate, like “nervous system disorder” or something like that. I’ve always hated the term mental illness ever since I was a little kid and heard it being used all the time to describe my mother (who had bipolar type 1); I remember thinking, Well, she’s incredibly intelligent, so why are they saying there’s something wrong with her mind?

    It obviously was a fetus. Pass the biscuits, please.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. P.S. were you really, really happy when the news media interviewed you when the puppy was left in your car?

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  6. I’ve only read the other blogger a few times. I just couldn’t keep up with her. Perhaps she has cried the sky is falling one too many times and people just dismiss her cry for help. Hopefully, she can get the help she needs and soon.

    Boss, frm. is just wrong, it was a baby thrown off that bridge.

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  7. I have never understood how people could think it was a baby,That would mean she hid her pregnancy for 9 months, then met up with Billy Jo on the bridge where they toss the baby, and then nobody found a baby body anywhere downstream. Or, if it wasn’t their baby, nobody complained about their baby being missing. Sounds a bit far-fetched to me, but then I don’t know much about rural Southern culture.
    Anyway, pass the biscuits.

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    1. I assume it was hidden the way teen girls who give birth in high school bathrooms do it.

      I legit went to school with a girl who as a teen hid an entire pregnancy (1980s) until she went into labor on Spring Break Vacation with her family. I had classes with her and never noticed a thing.

      So I can say it happens.

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      1. Long story short. An acquaintance had a baby while on vacation when her family. None of us knew she was pregnant. It was a surprise!

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  8. I’ve heard regarding various parenting bits of advice about not rewarding children’s behavior when they are “just trying to get attention” that perhaps a better solution would be to give the child some attention. Perhaps the people who should be giving Other Blogger some useful attention are instead trying to leave it along – and the mean part of me thinks the reason is that people around Other Blogger are benefiting from the spiraling blog.

    BeeBelle

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  9. Oh my, thought you were talking about someone else at first. Didn’t realize it was [redacted]. I am sorry, I am sure she has some serious problems but the women took the BLM protests and made it ALL. ABOUT. HER. Like, don’t we realize HOW HARD SHE HAS IT???
    Because being a white women of privilege is sooo much harder than being a person of color in 2020 America. If she is really is that fragile then maybe she should just stay off the internet????

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  10. Wow. Well, I have no idea who that blogger is – and don’t care really. Just a little curious now. ha ha. I only read this non-blog as it always brightens my day! I love that! And need that!
    As a therapist – I love that all on here who mentioned they are suffering with depression and other difficult issues, are getting the help they need. I empathize with you – just take care of yourselves and ignore other’s opinions. As in – doing it for attention – good grief!
    One day at a time….
    The old saying – until you have walked a mile in my shoes…

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  11. I like the migraine/mental health comparison. If it’s invisible, and someone doesn’t have the problem, it’s easier for them to think it’s made up for attention.
    I hope she’ll be OK.
    I like biscuits.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I woke up today and I thought, June 3rd is…something. Someone’s birthday? (I’m not on Facebook, so I have to remember these things) Is it a holiday? I couldn’t for the life of me remember then I got on your blog and right then I knew…

    I only see said blogger in IG and I thought I was the only one who was noticing such a thing. Did she have a breakup? I unfollowed because everything was vague and hostile and confusing. I get enough of that in real life.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I have tried to read Dooce a couple of times and I didn’t like her or her blog. As someone else said she made me uncomfortable and I did not enjoy it. I completely get that she has issues. I have major reccurent depression and generalized anxiety disorder, I believe mine started in fourth grade. It would come and go for some time but got worse with time and situations in my life. I also have a hormone imbalance that causes organic depression. I am medicated, have been for perhaps a decade, and I wish I had always been. It helps a lot. I do not judge others for it and that pull yourself up by your bootstraps crap infuriates me. Some people will never get it.
    Yours is the only not blog I read now. I’ve tried quite a few over the years, but I came to it all late in 2008.

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  14. I have never read her. You are the only non-blog I read. I read your thoughts because you are my friend and I care about what is happening in your life!

    When I blogged about my situational depression several years ago, it was thrown back at me like I was a horrible person. It was brought up recently by a family member and she told me I was bi-polar. Huh? Because I had just gotten divorced, my two dogs died within two weeks, my Grandma died and a very dear friend died – and this was in a six month period – this makes me mentally ill? Well – fine. Label all you want. It was the most wretched six months anyone should have to endure.

    Sometimes life is just too hard. I try not to judge. You just do not know until it comes crashing down on you.

    Liked by 4 people

  15. I apparently do not read that person’s blog and since I am in my 40s going on 80- I am not much on FB. So, clueless.

    I do feel for those who suffer from mental illness because it seems hard for those not impacted to ‘get it.’ My college age guy is struggling right now and my good friend is all: ‘I mean I had a baby and bought a house and had to figure out x, y, and z at his age. Tell him to quit this and do that.’ I finally told her the difference was she was not struggling with mental health. Then she was like ‘oh’.

    Love the visual of you and your boss going off track and the other worker sending out resume. Bah ha!

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  16. I’ve tried to read her several times, but I don’t get it. I’m not referring to the drama. I don’t understand what she’s on about and I don’t want to wade through any of it. She’s kind of like my sister in law who drops into the middle of a conversation with you as if she’s already told you all the background. For instance, she’ll say, “The dog is home from the bone shop” and we all say, “Oh, that’s good,” but only because it sounds like good news. None of us know what she’s talking about.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. (steps on soapbox)
    Depression is real, as we all know. (clears throat nervously) It can be situational, and it can be chemical. After years — years — of trying things like changing my diet, losing weight, gaining weight, getting more sleep, working out, going to therapy — I was finally blessedly diagnosed with a chemical imbalance in my big-ass brain (I like to think it’s big) and was given medication. It took a while for me to realize “I just drove over that bridge without being tempted to drive the car off of it. What a change!”

    I hope the result of Dooce’s public writing is the right doctor knocking on her door.

    (steps off soapbox)

    Pass the biscuits, please.

    Liked by 3 people

  18. Yummm, biscuits. My favorite breakfast place has the best biscuits. I can focus on that instead of the reality that’s going on around me. Thankfully, I am safe.

    Liked by 2 people

  19. I think the problem with That Other Blogger is that she has a history of being outlandish, saying/printing things for maximum effect, etc. It’s entirely possible/probable that she has mental issues now, but because of her past behavior, people are skeptical. I’m not saying that’s right (it’s not, particularly when she mentions suicide) but her former way of manipulating people for her own greater good (blog numbers) could be what is causing criticism now. She was always roundly criticized but she thrived on it as it drove her popularity. What she needs to do is step back from social media, but as that has been her life, she can’t. Without a media presence, in her mind, she’s nobody.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Somebody suggested to her that she get a real job, and not depend on social media for her income and she balked. But it’s really worth considering. Her job is making her miserable.

      Liked by 2 people

  20. I think people treat depression similarly to how they treat migraines. If they’ve never had one, they assume it’s “just a bad headache.” And then they dismiss it as no big deal. People do the same with depression. I have OCD, MDD, and GAD. People constantly tell me to cheer up or don’t worry about it, etc.

    Sometimes I post things on social media because I think maybe someone who actually understands will see it. Because it gets exhausting to reach out to friends and family and basically be shot down and told you’re being ridiculous. One by one by one is a lot of work.

    So if you put it out there publicly, maybe someone will get it and connect. But you do have to wade through all the comments about “just pray about it” or “go for a walk and clear your head.” The majority of people think anyone with depression is doing it for attention or being overly dramatic. It’s the main reason it takes most of so long to actually try to get treatment.

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    1. I have a young friend who was out of the country and got her first migraine. She said all these years she sort of judged me with the whole, God, it’s just a headache thing. She wrote me to apologize.

      I stopped telling people about my darker times because in college I lost nearly all my friends when I was depressed. Some I’ve brought back into my life, but I will never tell them when I’m down. It’ll always be light, breezy, fun with them.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Me too. Two of my kids also have mental health struggles. We treat it like any other health issue in our family and we are totally open to helping anyone who asks. Everyone is aware that we HAVE the issues, but we are selective about who knows when we are in an episode. I finally figured out that some people don’t deserve to have that much insight into my life.

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  21. When I saw the title of this post, I had to think for a moment about the date because I’ve lost track of time. Then I starting singing about poor ol Billy Joe. When we’ve driven over the Tallahatchie bridge, my husband always says heres the bridge Billy Joe jumped off.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. I have no idea who this person is as I am not on facebook but I do feel for anyone going through a rough time so I will wish her well. Also, this is the first time I listened to that Bill Joe song as youtube was blocked on my work PC forever but now that our work puts content on youtube we can get it and WTF…… But I love that green dress and her hair.

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  23. I don’t think she’s doing it for the attention. I think there is a spectrum of people. On one end is people who can cope with anything, no matter how difficult or awful. And on the other end are people who fall apart if even the teeniest thing goes wrong. She seems to be way at the far end of those who fall apart.

    As someone who is more towards the coping and getting through things end of the spectrum, I often find her histrionics to be a lot. I have to remind myself that people deal with difficulties in their own way.

    I had to stop reading her blog. It was making me sad and uncomfortable.

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    1. As someone who’s more on the histrionics side but less so than she, I guess I can sort of understand her. I also know that you can tell yourself, Buck up. You can rein it in. Well. That’s not fair. Sometimes I can. I guess she can’t. Might not be her fault.

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      1. As Howard Stern fans, June and I know that the Jeffersons was deemed the best TV theme show song of all time. There were brackets and everything.

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        1. I’m sorry but the correct answer to this is Sanford and Son. Followed closely by the Rockford Files. THEN maybe the Jeffersons and the Jetsons.

          Liked by 2 people

    1. I too am a huge fan of the jetsons theme song. It was always my favorite reality show when I was a kid too. #onecandream

      I’m not sure what blogger is being addressed in your post but I guess we all have our way of coping, or not….. I demo stuff to help me cope and process and while my house may not be thrilled with my coping mechanisms, my brain feels better for it and my house will adjust. It saddens me that there is such mayhem in the world coming from many directions…

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  24. During the height of said blogger’s popularity, I tried reading. I just never got her. Believe me, I tried. It seemed I was the only person in America whose tea she was not a cup. When some of her current readers have commented on the FB about her, I tried again to read. All I can say is that whether it’s for attention, or she’s seriously crashing and burning, it’s disturbing. I hope she gets the help she needs.

    CommandoBarbie

    Liked by 1 person

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