15 April 2022

A broken piece of filigreed black molded plastic — intended to mimic wrought iron — sits on a greyish sidewalk. It looks a bit like a dragon’s head.

I’ve been getting a lot of asbestos abatement notices in my inbox lately — my campus is from the Height of Asbestos era and every time there’s any work done on a building, we all get warnings by email to stay well clear of it. I feel like I’m living my own personal Asbestos Abatement Warning Moment lately; I’ve started seeing a new psychologist, and our conversations have pretty much meant me taking a scraper to the stucco ceiling of my emotional rec room (to use a suburban analogy, which isn’t all that fitting since I’ve never lived in the suburbs, but I’m going with it). All the irritants that were safely trapped within a nice layer of decorative plaster have become airborne. Like asbestos, my coping mechanisms have done a really good job of insulating me from (metaphorical) fire. Maladaptive though they may be, they’ve done the trick. Only now I’ve gone and released them into the air (my conscious thoughts, if you will) and can’t really ignore that they’re actually quite hazardous.

I mean, it’s good to have your asbestos removed. It’s just that the removal process is so painstaking and time consuming and expensive.

I’m trying to finish writing a conference paper right now, and it’s awfully difficult to do with all this emotional asbestos floating around. Wish me luck.

(In other news this week, there was a Major Dodgy Scaffolding Incident on my street that ended in a stop work order and emergency scaffold removal. In an unrelated event, I was almost spat upon by a local sports celebrity. Wow am I tired.)