Monday, January 12, 2009

Subject Zero

I think I may hate entertainment. It's ubiquitous and consuming and it keeps providing a distraction from my growing sense of manic insanity, and recently I've been to notice how important these moments of manic insanity are.

By the simple virtue of how my brain works it's hard for me to talk about this. In order for me to take a clear step outside myself and think clearly about such things I can't use words like "I" or "me." So, let us take a moment to discuss my case study of Subject Zero.

Subject Zero's increasing manic behavior no doubts stems from a growing concern about his performance in school. The subject possess the potentially hazardous combination of pride and confidence, which gives the subject a form of operating immunity to criticism, but the subject's innately analytical nature leads it back to a more solid form of measurement. The majority of Subject Zero's goals are highly ephemeral. The only one that is routinely measured in a clear numerical way is academic performance. As this has not substantially improved the other improvements subject zero had perceived in its life are suddenly called into question.

This questioning, combined with the subjects tendencies toward obession, results in a behavioral event which we will be referring to as a "Freakout." The freakout phenomenon is a particularly dramatic one because it plays to the subjects strengths, expression, analysis, intellect, but it originates from a violent emtional outlash. The subject experiences the sudden onset of extreme doubt, which builds into a negative mindset. The subject then attaches the negitivity to a singular focus, which brings up Subject Zero's predisposition for fixation. Fixation can occur in varied circumstances, and is often a key problem solving tool for subject zero, but as the subject lacks complete control over it this trait serves equally well to damage it. In a Freakout this fixation, based in a burst of negitivity, is then acted upon using the aforementioned strengths. The result is a bursty of violent accusatory thought that the subject percieves as insightful. These are usually take the form of a rant meant to blame the subjects most recent failures on the focus of the freakout. The actual merit of the ideas expressed could be debted, but their violent accusatory nature marks them as clear indicators of a damaging behavior.

The subject does not always react to doubt in this manner. Other behaviors, such as panicked attempted damage control, and behavior akin to mild depression are equally common. A single freakout incident usually emcompasses more then one of these behaviors, with the most common pattern being: Damage control, outlash, depression.

Recently the pattern has begun to change. Subject Zero knows his own depression behaviors, and will sometimes take measures to actively counteract them, with varrying degrees of success. When successful the subject will go into a state that it refers to as "Holding on to the madness." In this state the lashing out behavior, and the damage control behavior resurface. The subject in this state will also take means to counteract the lashing out behavior, leading us to suspect that it values this act because it believes that it has some greater ability to perform acts of damage control and planning while it is still experiencing a manic energy rush. This has been shown to be at least partially true, with the subject taking more genuine steps towards managing the situation then it would have otherwise, but the potential psychological damage done by the self analysis is worrying. Subject Zero is already prone to dramatic actions, and in these moments of manic energy large potentially self destruct thoughts are often expressed, some of which make it as far as loose planning. While these ideas tend to subside with the manic energy itself, there are patterns, some of them recurr, and the question of their effect on Subject Zero's vulnerability to moments of doubt is rightly raised, and there is a clear trend showing a greater occuracne of freakouts since Subject Zero began conciouslly opposing the depression phase of the experience.

One final note, from which it is hard to draw any conclusions. Subject Zero appears to have little actual worry for his long term success, even though his short term success is prompting him to a level of analysis that clearly borders on insanity. In this case a form of suspension of disbelief in which the subject writes about itself as though it were an outside observer, a practice Subject Zero uses in order to attempt to analyze itself without the biasing factor of pride. Subject Zero appears convinced that he would be able to survive on his own under his own means as a funtioning memeber of society, even in the event of what he refers to as "Spontaneous Academic Failure," a hypothetical scenario in which the subjects performance drops to the lowest possible levels with no apparent cause.

It should be noted that this particular hypothetical scenario is just one amongst many, all of which follow the theme of "Spontaneous *blank* Failure," which appears to be something along the lines of a game that subject zero plays both for personal distraction/entertainment, and as a means of ensuring constant preparedness.

This unwavering self confidence underlying a larger more vulnerable construct brings us back to our intial point. Subject Zero is known to be recovering from anxiety issues, which were caused by an identity crisis which was an unintended consequence of the subjects recovery from long term depression. It is our opinion that this identity crisis was never fully resolved. We believe this is the direct cause of the increase in freakouts, as the subject tries to resolve its own concept of self, and its intended target of self with a paticular carrear.


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