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Published on April 27th, 2014 | by Richard Black

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My Most Recent Unvacation, Thoughts on Doc McStuffins and Her Struggle with Schizophrenia

I recently had the pleasure of taking a vacation or, as my wife now refers to them, an unvacation. The term spawned from a truly horrific trip we took last year to New Orleans. In all honesty I can’t remember I’ve chronicled posted that historic event within these hallowed pages and, to be even more blunt, I have no desire to give it a look.

I highly encourage you, dear reader, to give it a go and let me know what you find.

Suffice it to say that we never made it to the Crescent city, or New Orleans as it’s known for some of my less intuitive readers. Instead Laura, Darcy and made it as far as Baton Rouge to drop off a friend’s daughter and spent the next five days passing a delightful bout of influenza back and forth before driving home and enrolling in a lengthy session of couples counseling.

Our most recent trip was slightly more successful. Darcy didn’t projectile vomit in the back of our car in the middle of “where in the fuck am I in the midwest” also known as Cooter Arkansas and we even made it to our destination.

There were, however, a few hiccups.

The car we intended to take had been acting up for a few days and by acting up I mean it sounded like a forgetful mechanic had left a pipe wrench somewhere in the engine block and a few hammers for good measure. Laura insisted on returning the vehicle to the dealership, an hour out of our way, instead of letting it rot in the driveway.

I politely disagreed, said something about arriving at our destination at ten fucking o’clock in the evening and then drove the bucket out to the middle of the next county to have it serviced.

I would also be remiss if I didn’t mention that I’d recently started having panic attacks whenever I drove over 45 miles per hour, an issue that complicated things significantly not just for the hike out to the dealership but for the eleven plus hour trip ahead.

And so with that inauspicious beginning we…uhhh…began

To say that I do not travel well is akin to saying that Lindsey Lohan has a few emotional issues. Everything would be fine and dandy if nothing ever went wrong but there’s something inherent about travel, at least the way that I do it, where something  inevitably goes south.

To be fair about half of the issues are of my own making. Seven or eight years ago Laura and I planned a trip out to the San Juan islands in Washington, a time that coincided with my attempt to wean myself from antidepressants. It also turns out that I’m allergic to just about everything in Washington state in the summer, a little wrinkle that simply added to my  enjoyment of the northwest, and instead of simply being a sobbing emotional wreck by the end of our trip I was a sneezing and sobbing emotional wreck.

I’ve been stranded at just about every major airport twice, caught influenza each and every time I’ve been to Florida (about twelve times at last count) and just about every other place I’ve been to as well now that I think about it.

I’ve even opted to rent a car and drive back from White Plains New York to Missouri when our flight was canceled, the coup de grace on another horrific bit of travel in which our hotel lost power in August for the weekend, our rental car was flooded with enough cleansing agent to guarantee a more or less perpetual buzz for the entire trip, we were late to the wedding after I had to drive into the city to buy a tie…I could go on but you get the idea.

The sad fact is that I used to love travel and road trips in particular. There was nothing as relaxing, as exciting, as the prospect of driving five or six or even ten hours while I listened to the radio and smoked a half a pack of cigarettes on my way to wherever I was headed. I loved the journey and the destination was simply a bonus.

These days the journey has changed. The tranquil rhythm of the tires on the open road has been replaced by the incessant drone of the latest bowel movement Disney or Nickelodeon has produced as Darcy watches it ad nauseam for eight straight hours in the back of the car. The end result is that instead of focusing the considerable powers of my mind to more worthy pursuits like curing cancer or petitioning The Rolling Stones to stop making new albums my attention is diverted by the banter ambulatory snowmen and whinny of super intelligent horses.

During our last unvacation I spent ten hours creating alternate lyrics to the songs in the movie Tangled. Here’s one I

 

I’ve got a dream

I’ve got a dream

To dance and prance and mince

To be a queen.

Ohh I’d be one tremendous catch

If I only had a snatch.

Cause way down deep inside I’ve got a dream

On this trip I spent the bulk of my time pondering creating alternate conditions for the toys in the cartoon Doc McStuffins. For those of you unfamiliar with the show Doc is a little girl who can make her toys come alive by pressing her “magic” stethoscope. Throughout the course of the program various toys seek out Doc’s medical advice because they are leaking air, have sand in their gears, compulsively overeat or stab their owners.

All right I made the last two up but after eight hours or so I was hoping that Doc would diagnose her patients with something other than Dryeyeotosis or Gearstuckanitis. Parents have to watch this shit too after all.  Imagine how refreshing it would be to hear Doc diagnose a snake with a bowel obstruction instead of something cutesy like Barfymyotosis?

I’m not saying it should happen all the time but finding out that the doll Chipper McStabby couldn’t shut her eyes because of a virulent case of ocular herpes might make me tune in a bit more.

It was around the time was considering the sexual habits of Chipper McStabby that I came to the conclusion that Doc McStuffins was off her rocker. These toys aren’t really ill. “THEY ARE TOYS” the words resounded in my brain.

If anyone in this cartoon is in need of dire medical attention it’s Doc.  While I’m not a licensed psychiatrist or even an unlicensed psychiatrist it seems pretty evident that Doc McStuffins is suffering from a fairly advanced case of schizophrenia. She hears voices, imagines her toys are real, fairly textbook stuff if watching hours of Dr. Phil has taught me anything.

But that’s not the worst part.

Doc’s mother is a licensed medical doctor.  While I’m sure the elder McStuffins spends the bulk of her time treating physical booboos and ouchies it’s hard to believe that she wouldn’t recognize the signs of a serious mental illness in her daughter.  Instead of having Doc properly treated Mr. and Mrs. McStuffins set their emotionally unstable daughter loose on an unsuspecting city as she ostensibly performs checkups on toys.

Of course we all know where this is headed.  One day Doc won’t be satisfied by performing a “cooterectomy” on her stuffed rabbit. She’ll move on to shaving feral cats and the next thing we know some poor animated child will end up on the wrong end of an enema.

Trust me it will all end in tears and a straight jacket. I’ve seen it before countless numbers of times. I’m sure that you will all join me in the fervent hope that Mr. and Mrs. Mcstuffins find the strength to treat their daughter before things get out of hand and I encourage you all to write to the Director of Programming at Disney to avert an unnecessary and horrible tragedy.


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