Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Play therapy, septième édition

Oh, Dr. Owl! I had such a dreadful day yesterday.

Sit down. Sit down, expateek! Please. Calm yourself. Whatever is wrong?

Oh, Dr. Owl, everything was so strange yesterday. I felt so queer!

Go on...

Well, first of all, I was outside yesterday afternoon, and I saw the most beautiful woodpecker crashing about in the back of the garden. It was brilliant -- black and white, with scarlet feathers at its neck and tail. It seemed so strange.

Strange? And why is that, expateek?

Well, our neighbors have just returned from wherever it is that famous Polish movie directors go when they're filming on location, and they've filled up their bird-feeder, so there are jillions of birds of all kinds flitting around. It's all rather disconcerting. I'd been used to having no one around.

No one? Birds aren't people, you know, expateek.

I know, I know, Dr. Owl. Perhaps these therapy sessions have made me feel a bit inter-species-ally confused. Is that a word, Dr. Owl? Inter-species-ally?

I'm afraid not, expateek, but please, carry on.

Okay, well, I felt a bit desolate yesterday. Moving again. All the uncertainty. All the anger about moving countries every four-and-a-half minutes...

expateek, you're exaggerating again....

You're right. Every couple of years then. And then all the angst about le French boss of the bad news. And Satan's minions Human Resources.... So I was out on the balcony, sneaking a cigarette deep in thought, and then there was a massive, I mean massive flock of birds flying far overhead. It must have been five minutes of blackbirds streaming across the sky at sunset. Screeching, cawing, whatever the heck blackbirds do. It was unnerving. Beautiful, but unnerving.

Oh dear, expateek. You are feeling poorly. We birds do migrate, you know. It's totally normal.

Oh, I suppose. *sigh*

expateek, I think we should carry on with today's play therapy. Perhaps in this vulnerable mood, you'll be able to play more freely. More productively. We may be moving into a new phase. Would you like to begin?

Hmmmm. I guess so.


Ok, then...

Le French boss of the bad news is very happy.
He has traveled to California,
where he will be an on-set assistant
for the remake of Hitchcock's The Birds!

Good God, expateek! Are you sure you want to continue with this line of play therapy?

I know what I'm doing, Dr. Owl.

Le French boss of the bad news is
one of the animal handlers for the movie.
After all, he saw Pet Detective with Jim Carrey,
so he knows what's what.

Release the birds, collect the birds.

Feed the birds,
cover the birdcages with chamois drop-cloths at the end of each day's shooting.

Easy. C'est facile!
Especially for someone of his formidable intelligence.
Because after all, he is the most intelligent person in the whole world!
And of course, he is French!
What could possibly go wrong?

So he is caring for the birds. Many species of birds, in fact, because as you remember from the original movie, all sorts of birds mass together and combine forces to attack the townspeople of Bodega Bay. In fact, interpretation of the film is ambiguous, and people disagree as to whether this is a parable about Man v. Nature, or whether it is more of a Greek tragedy with Oedipal nuances. The most appealing theory is that the birds are a concrete reminder that life is ultimately precarious, arbitrary and absurd and quite possibly meaningless. The function of the birds is to remind us that control is an illusion and people who try to maintain that illusion are the ones hardest hit by the unpredictabilities of life.

So you're saying you have some control issues, expateek?

Without a doubt.
Anyway, le boss feeds the birds, he collects the birds.
He releases the birds.
He tells the birds charming little French fairy tales on the lunch break,
because he is so clever and so entertaining.
The birds gather round to hear his sweet tales.

But what is this?

He is trying to gather them back in the cages for the night.

They come closer and closer, and suddenly, hélas!

He has somehow tripped and is on the floor.

The birds swarm over him.

Hey!!! HEY! CUT!!!

Get that one out of here! No Holy Dove! C'mon, man, what were you thinking? Hey Joey, the Holy Dove is on the wrong set. Take him to Set Number Four. They're doing that flick with Mel Gibson about the Holy Land over there. Sheesh.

Okay, Roll It.... and ACTION!

The birds are pecking and pecking!

Stop! Please! Mon Dieu!

But please, I am your friend!

The beating and flapping of wings is so loud!

Louder than the beating of his own heart!

He is bleeding!

His eyes! His eyes!

He can no longer see. He cannot go on. His breath is shallow, shallower.

He gives a last sigh, and voilà. He is gone.

... And we've used up today's allotment of exclamation points.

That's all I got, Dr. Owl, whaddya think?

My God! Dr. Owl! Is that... blood on your beak?

What? What? What are you talking about???

It's countertransference, Dr. Owl! I don't know much about psychiatric theory, but I've read about this on Wikipedia. Dr. Owl!

No, no! NO, expateek! What could you possibly be thinking? Blood! My word! Your imagination has clearly overtaken your senses. I think we'd best finish up now. Perhaps Eugenia Yvette can find you a cold washcloth for your forehead. I think you're delirious. Gah! These hysterical women. All in a little snit about uprooting their households and moving their stuff. Please. The male South African weaver-bird rebuilds his nest over and over again in the space of just a few months. Get a grip, girlfriend! You don't know what suffering is!

Dr. Owl, I just... I don't know... I'm sorry!

That's enough, expateek. I'll see you tomorrow.

Oh Dr. Owl! I didn't mean it! I.. I ...

Goodbye, expateek! This session is over!

... God, that was a close one. I totally need a wee tot of Scotch!
It'll go down well after that delicious breast of clown.



Christine said...

I suspected all along, that Dr. Owl is a little off his rocker. I suspect that he has received his training via Wikipedia.

expateek said...

LOL... we have found him out!! You are too funny, I just choked on a swallow of that Scotch!

justme said...

Am STILL loving this....keep it KNOW it helps...LOL!

Jaywalker said...

I really really want Dr Owl to analyse me, despite the autistic falconer on the Isle of Wight's insistence that owls are the most stupid birds in the world.

Does he do videoconference consultations?