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Wednesday, May 26, 2010

I've fallen for it and I can't get up

Do you ever feel like those prescription drug commercials are talking directly to you? They ask, “Are you sleepy, crabby, sneezy, dopey, etc? We think you really need this here new drug we made. If your doctor doesn‘t offer it to you, ask her for it. If she says no, stare at her in a weird way.”

As they name off the symptoms, I’m sitting there with my checklist marking them off. If they had an ‘all of the above’ button, I’d push it. I’d slam that clear plastic case down over that big red button and scream, “DEAL!”. By the time they’re done, I’m convinced I have whatever they want me to have. Either that, or I’m the reincarnation of Snow White.

The qualifying questions are so normal they‘re odd. “Do you get thirsty, tired or hungry at times? Do you ever feel a strong urge to sit? When you do sit, do you ever get tired of sitting? Do you want to get up but can’t? If you stay seated, do you feel guilty about just sitting on your ass instead of getting things done? Well then, we’re pretty darn sure you need this drug.“

My eyes are bulging with fear because I answered, “yes, yes, yes, yes, OMG YES!” as I stumble to my feet and then fall.

They get you coming or going. There’s really no way that you can’t have whatever illness they want you to have. Then when you start worrying about having this illness, another drug commercial comes on and asks you if you find yourself worrying excessively and you have to get out another checklist.

I’m a pretty happy person most of the time but I have some bad days now and again. Am I depressed? I didn’t think I was until I saw the drug commercials and now I seem to meet the qualifications. I don’t know though, some of the commercials are just a slight bit suspicious.

One of them that’s trying to convince me that I’m depressed is kind of weird. At first I didn’t even think it was a commercial - I thought it was a Night of the Living Dead movie. The people in it are all dragging around the grocery store with blank looks in their eyes. It’s in black and white because color might convey some sort of cheer and clearly these zombies are severely depressed in their colorless world.

I got all excited when I first saw it and ran and grabbed a bowl of popcorn and a big glass of pop. I settled down into my movie watching position but the “movie” ended in 30 seconds. I was all set to watch the zombies eat each other and instead I find out I’m depressed.

When I was a kid, we didn’t have prescription drug commercials. We didn’t put in requests for drugs from the doc, we just took what he offered and figured he knew more about prescription drugs than we did. Now it’s like going to the deli.

“I’d like a half pound of ham sliced thin and 3 months of Prozac. Can you put a little less Zoloft in the potato salad? I‘ve been too happy lately.”

If you’re depressed, what are you shopping for anyway? If I’m so depressed that I don’t want to get out of my chair, how did I get motivated enough to drag around the grocery store? What do I care about food? I don’t care about anything. I’m depressed.

The only thing I can figure is that they’re all making their way to the deli for their antidepressants in that commercial. Sometimes I have to wait longer at the deli than I do at the doctor’s office so it does make sense.

So apparently I’ve fallen for their stupid commercial and I have diagnosed myself as depressed. Here I thought I just wanted a ham sandwich. One thing I do know is that they’re not ever going to convince me that I have erectile dysfunction.

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