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“Like the irate lady who appeared to Diane one night pulling a kiddy’s red express wagon trimmed with bells and filled with cats in fancy hats and dresses. Like the man in Brooklyn called the Mystic Barber who teleported himself to Mars and said he was dead and wore a copper band around his forehead with antennae on it to receive instructions from the Martians. Or the lady in the Bronx who trained herself to eat and sleep underwater, or the man who carried a rose and a noose around with him at all times, or the person who invented a noiseless soup spoon, or the man from New Jersey who’d collected string for twenty years, winding it into a ball that was now five feet in diameter, sitting monstrous and splendid in his living room.”

from Diane Arbus: A Biography by Patricia Bosworth



Let’s take the case of Krista L. She arrived at the institute demonstrating symptoms of acute hysteria. My colleagues and I have been able to identify at least three voices in her cruel inner choir. These tormenting voices accompany poor Krista L. through her days and nights.

First, the young lady is convinced that she simply is not good enough for anything or anyone. Even though this thought (and what it implies) terrifies her, she persists in thinking it, even repeating it to herself silently, almost nonstop from the moment she wakes up. Attached to this voice, yes, singing harmony at all times is a mistaken conclusion that she is lonely, lonely, lonely. Of course, our extensive interviews and meticulous field research have revealed that Krista L. is not only quite popular and well-loved by both family and friends, but she is also highly accomplished within her spheres of activity in the city of X.

Krista’s personal success is no doubt due to the constant companionship of a third voice, which simply chants, Do. She has confessed that when she can’t think of anything to actually do, she takes a photo and posts it to Facebook or Instagram. Her facebook notifications further defend her from the dark chorus.

We have no choice but to detain her at Laughter Ranch until further notice.