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That the inmates are running the asylum should be of no shock to anyone. Anywhere. It was ever thus, as far as the eye can see.

We have always been a family of seekers, looking for answers, remedies, cures, anything that might ease the burden of life which at times can be rather trying on one’s frayed nerves.

The talking cure, as I believe it’s called, has always been popular. Not so much that we go to any type of therapist – at least not one licensed by any kind of medical board – rather that we talk and moan and gripe about what ails us, physically, emotionally, existentially, frequently. If not constantly.

Instead of seeking out the more traditional forms of therapy, particularly when we were younger, The Mom sought out all kinds of different healers in the hopes that one of them might offer up a solution for what must’ve seemed then as a rather robust form of, if not quite insanity, than certainly something close. Had we been the same children we were then, now, we would’ve had an alphabet soup of labels: ADHD being the prime suspect.

But The Mom, rather unusually given her fondness for Big Pharma and their easy solutions, refused to give up and tried to find ways to rid us of our hyperactivity and general willfullness and inability to sit still or be calm the natural way.

We had our energy centred, a weird electric pen thing waved over our toes, drops, diets, and everything in between. When eventually it was settled on that we were an allergic lot, she simply stopped feeding us anything that might draw out the worst in us. Thus began a lifetime of eating rather a lot of rice, potatoes and vegetables. No sauce, no butter, no nothing. Just plain, boiled food. To her credit, it sort of worked. When coupled with a fairly intensive physical regimen.

Anyhow, all of this must’ve been exhausting, and so there were many times when The Mom simply threw her hands in the air and cried, “I don’t care! Do what you like!” And thus, we, the inmates were left to our own devices.

A similar approach has been used with the pets. The sorts of behaviours one might be advised to try and train out of a pet – peeing in the house, eating the house, general destruction and mayhem – were always looked upon as entertaining quirks, fodder for dinnertime tales.

So when L’il Sis announced that The Pig would now have purpose to her days – as a therapy dog – well, I have to say, though bemused, I was slightly perplexed. If The Pig all of a sudden had purpose, and stopped destroying L’il Sis’ apartment, where would the amusing tales come from? Elvis is getting on in years and hardly does anything new and stupid anymore. So without The Pig’s poor behaviour, who is going to provide the nightly entertainment?

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