I'm Sorry You're Happy, A body of work created by Mark Charney and Jarred Elrod

Colin: An excerpt from “Double Hernia”

(presented to begin Volley)

In fact, that story segues very nicely into the next section of this sordid tale, the Rapturous Tale of Colin and Joanne! Sit down, take a load off Marty, and listen to the adventures that your well meaning phone call has wrought.

When the police came to pick me up, I’d gotten my psych-meds mixed up and was taking twice the proper amount of antidepressants and half the amount of anti-anxiety stuff, staying up (unwillingly I might add) for four or five days straight. So when they entered, I was imagining things from the peeps upstairs, increasingly perverse sex acts, to be precise, and then a terrible series of arguments which culminated in a face-off so extreme that I was following my tail around the house in circuitous panic. I thought the couple was utterly deranged up there, and that the woman had already called for help but that the ambulance couldn’t find the place. So when the cops came, I thought they were coming to rescue the woman upstairs.

To their credit, they checked out the story, summoning the guy up there who proved to be fine, not even with his wife at the time. But by this time, the voices were multiplying and I began to think there were hundreds of cops and reporters outside, and one in particular who was trying to break down the door.

(As he gets deeply into this part of the story, we hear what he describes, along with the increasing noise of the water drip and the clock. The effect should be very irritating, more grating than fingernails scratching across a blackboard.)

Because of this behavior, two cops took me dragging and screaming to the emergency room—“I’m always depending upon the kindness of strangers,” you know Marty—where I began to imagine there was a cop outside trying to shame me by announcing the details of some long-ago homo encounters of mine—nothing I am ashamed of, by the way—sexuality is always a degree of bisexuality in my book and some are closer to the middle than others—and by the time we arrived at the hospital, I was certain that there was some kind of plot going on.

In the emergency room, I hallucinated a man about to rape his son in one of the curtained examining areas, and I went over the top. I chased the guy when the family was leaving and accosted him. He had, after all, in truth, been innocent. And I was violent when the nurse tried to restrain me. More coppers arrived and I continued my monkeyshines to the degree that I was flung to the ground and handcuffed behind my back, all the while begging them to watch out for my left groin, still aching from the double hernia.

So, I ended up spending some time pleading with the copsters to check on the room where my hallucinated violation had transpired, and then ended up strapped to a stretcher and driven to the local laughing academy, where I passed two nights.

(Pause. The sounds of the asylum are very loud at this point, as are the sounds of water dripping and the clock ticking.)

It was all a true drug crash, Marty Mart, and it was hideous beyond belief. I got to come home, finally, but still had to answer to a charge of disorderly contact—thanks a lot Marty—for which I had to have my shrink compose a letter that finally saw me cleared. Anyways, bucko, I learned one thing for sure: you know those jokey stickers like, “I only do what the voices in my head tell me to.” They aren’t funny, Marty. It’s frightening to be crazy, to hear voices other than your own. So. . . I gave up my old meds for Effexor and Risperdal and Ambien.


Man that Wears Many Masks
RESPONSE 01: Man That Wears Many Masks
Side Effects
RESPONSE 02: Side Effects
Like Bombs
RESPONSE 03: Like Bombs

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© Elrod & Charney, 2013