Cuckoo Lane

Selix, M., 2008. Cuckoo Lane. Reformulation, Summer, p.6.


A thought from a Cuckoo’s nest in the West!

Cuckoo Lane is the space for anyone to send in their reflections on mental health, CAT, or the cultural context in which we function or not, as the case may be. Brief communications that invite dialogue are welcome. See Martin Sellix’s ‘Thought’ below.
Please send your material to Irene Elia: me14@cam.ac.uk
Thank you.

I have repeatedly heard on the Radio how many Acts of Parliament require us to be healthy. There are threats and promises about being too big, small, short, or tall, and together with this, what we must eat, not eat, or do to stay healthy and safe. But then, the following week or so, all this advice has changed. We have rights and wrongs and we can make this demand and that demand, but where is “the concept of being human”? When can we just be ourselves? When is there going to be some recognition that we all feel “blue”, “down in the dumps” at times? When are we going to be allowed to feel...well, happy without following prescribed advice, or sad without fearing that sad means the end of the world? I hear that the Government is about to spend a huge amount of money again on screening this and that in the name of protecting and improving us. As I see it, this only promotes the growth and spread of the virus - Worrius Wellius.

The Worrius Wellius virus is very contagious, and I have noted that many people suffer from its effects. These effects can be described as anxiety, sadness, “no go”, depression, and other conditions that make for a boring life in which the sufferer becomes boring company. The Worrius wellius virus is so contagious that I think most of our clients are suffering from it. In my observation, it presents in many guises and I enumerate a few. How do I pay my Council Tax that has no connection to my pay packet which is reducing? How do I feed my family with what is left after I have paid out huge sums to the Government? The anxiety so created is causing breakdowns and a more virulent form of the secondary virus, namely Giveius upius the lotius or “what the hell”. I wonder as I look at people - knowing too that I am not immune to this non-disappearing virus - how much longer we can all go on? Whilst I hope I take a humorous look at what is going on, I suggest that what I am saying is quite serious. We find this or that regulation, rather than freeing us up to do our work, in fact restricts us to the point that we become worried as to what boundaries we might be crossing. You know, “Am I saying the right stuff in the right way or am I saying something that’s not PC. What is PC anyway? I thought it was a Police Constable, but I am now getting very confused!”

Yes of course we require boundaries, of course we require professionalism BUT it seems to me that we are fast approaching, if we have not already arrived at, a place where nothing is going to get done. When all is said and done a great deal is said and very little is done. It is from my viewpoint in this particular Cuckoo’s Nest that I discern a real sadness not just amongst my clients but also in the wider society, a concern with a true feeling of shall I give up? Is it worth it? Shall I emigrate? It is sad when I find that many people, having spent a lifetime in work, are looking forward to retirement and wishing it would come soon but are deeply concerned as to whether they can afford it. It is yet another devastating outbreak of Worrius wellius.

So where do we go from here? I have discovered that with these people some humour is very often the touchstone for real growth and understanding. This humour can often enable them to stop and see the futility of the Worrius virus and to get on with living a worthwhile life. However, as this virus seems to have Government funding, it seems to me that the more we laugh at it the greater the cure. So let’s have some Government “screenings” of Bugs Bunny or Charlie Chaplin or listen to the Goons or watch again Tommy Cooper or anything that makes us laugh and laugh. It is really good to know that Ken Dodd’s Chuckle Muscle is in good order, and he said that that is what his surgeon said. This Cuckoo suggests that we all find and exercise our Chuckle Muscle.
Worrius Wellius watch out!

Martin Sellix

martinsellix@sellix.freeserve.co.uk

Full Reference

Selix, M., 2008. Cuckoo Lane. Reformulation, Summer, p.6.

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