By an Idiot | Episode 9: Going Mad


Good evening, denizens of the asylum. Outside the light fades to black, ushering in another Friday night. Let the voices in your head settle their differences and drift into silence; it’s time for By an Idiot. I am your idiot, Mr. Clown.

Now, we have all been troubled this past week by the plight of the recent addition to our roster, this sanitarium’s latest inmate. Never has my advice been more needed—nor been so prescient to this man’s affliction—for he has time and again informed us that he is not insane.

Our hearts go out to you. Now be assured, you have come to the right establishment. We can help. I like to think there is a little bit of madness in all of us, and it only takes the right people to bring it forth into the light.

First off, we need to know what the difference is between the sane and the insane. It may seem obvious, but it has to be said. The difference lies in the word, “In,” and that is the first step, which you have done. You have had yourself committed. Hardly anyone even tries to get committed—worried it would be too much hassle, that they’d fail if they tried—but the best way to start is to live in a place run by the government.

Now, I don’t want you to be discouraged by this fact, but some of us are naturally insane, from birth children with odd ticks, or providence gave us parents who daily provided practical lessons; other have a head start, but that in no way means you can’t begin now, or even excel some of your peers which today seem miles away, who can nonsensically blather on about lizard men with a strange conviction, or sit for hours rocking back and forth mumbling through tears.

Would you believe that some of these people, some of these child savants in our field, have grown into fine upstanding citizens? Independent and free? Believe us, we won’t let that happen; we are here for you. It is not about when you start, or your natural gifts, it’s going to be about you, how much of an effort you’re willing to make.

All I’ve said up to this point has been practical, but general. I’ve said nothing that I wouldn’t say to any soul longing to be free of the everyday doldrums of reality which sanity foists upon us. But to your case in particular: You’ll be happy to learn that you’re halfway there already, you just need a little jumpstart to really go bananas.

Unfortunately, I’ve been unable to consult with Dr. Agonson since you came, and haven’t gone over your files. As such, what I have to say is informed only by what I’ve gathered of you in the last three days, and lacks the full perspective of history, that is, your history.

The most expedient remedy for your sanity, as I see it, is a nervous breakdown. Already you tremble like a Chihuahua, jumping at the slightest noise. But how, you may ask, does one have a nervous breakdown? There are many ways of going about this, but the simplest for our situation may be the certainty that someone is trying to kill you. Which I am. This is a risk on my part, but the way I see it, we’re as good as neighbors living together in this asylum. It seems then my Christian duty to help you, and so, be assured, that one of these nights I am coming for you, with a knife. You’ll never know I am there.

I bid you all goodnight. This has been, Mr. Clown.


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