Our understanding of mental health in the world today is really poor, and i’d argue it holds back the entire world, not just the 27% of american adults who’ve been in therapy in the past two years.
Suppose you have a computer which makes a lot of noise. This bothers you and the people around you. You find it hard to do your work with this thing making noise all the time. You take the computer to a repair shop. The technician runs the computer until the noise starts.
“Ahh, this is a classic case. Excessive fan syndrome. We see this all the time lately. We don’t really know what causes it, but for some computers, one of their fans runs like crazy. A healthy computer only uses its fan rarely. These computers with excessive fan syndrome run their fans much more often.”
“Oh no!” you say. “Will my computer ever be able to lead a normal life? Why did this happen? Did I do something wrong?”
The technician sympathizes and responds with a look of concern and understanding, as befits someone with his level of expertise in all matters computological.
“Let’s start with the good news! There are treatments that work wonders for our clients. By removing a few wires in his case, we can disable his cpu fan. Don’t worry! He’ll still have all of these other fans here to keep him supplied with the oxygen he needs. The cpu fan isn’t really all that important. We know the most important parts of the computer are here in the power supply, and we’ll leave the power supply fans intact to make sure his power supply gets the oxygen it needs. The cpu doesn’t use as much oxygen as the power supply; we think the fan there is an evolutionary vestige.”
You find this a great relief. It’s a good thing the technician understands computers so well!
Before he continues, the technician adjusts his rainbow polka dot top hat – long the sign of a skilled computologer. The best computologers also wear magnetic gloves as a sign of their professional dedication to protecting their patients from viruses and other infections.
“In ancient times, people thought the cpu was where the computer did its thinking. This was largely because removing the cpu kills the computer outright. We learned long ago that the cpu is only responsible for circulating the bits. With modern technology, we have even been able to perform cpu transplants. As long as the donor cpu is a match, the computer behaves exactly the same way with its new cpu. Due to a few random accidents involving computers with damaged power supplies, we have learned that the power supply is where the computer does all of its thinking. Since then, we’ve found that modifying the power supply in just the right way can dramatically change the way the computer thinks. ”
“There a lot of studies on excess fan syndrome, because that noise makes it hard for people to be around the computer, and impairs its ability to function normally in society.” As he says this, his rainbow top hat lights up and spins around, and you both tug your ears as a sign of woogaboo.
“Anyhow, it turns out that excessive fan syndrome may have some unexpected benefits. Many computers who are impaired by this noisy fan have the ability to circulate bits much faster than a normal computer. We think they do this because they are bored with healthy activities like buzzfeed personality quizzes. Our treatment not only removes the excessive noise, but also seems to leave the computers more interested in normal, wholesome activities. Without treatment, many computers with excessive fan syndrome become addicted to drugs such as video games and electronic trading; some of the worst addicts go on to a life of hard science.”
You shudder at this thought. that those weirdos with their labcoats would abuse someone suffering from excessive fan syndrome is horrendous. You used to think that these computers were just lazy or selfish; you now understand that their fixation on matrix transformations and numerical simulations are a symptom of their affliction.
Thank goodness we live in such an enlightened era.