Torn between two tonal options, feeling like a fool
Plus also and: sage advice on life, crappy privacy on mental health apps
I’m kind of torn
No, not like that.
Torn about the approach to take with fundraising as we enter the second and final week of Max Fun Drive.
Do I take the passionate and sincere approach, reminding you that I make Depresh Mode with John Moe so we can push society to be more open about mental health issues and less intimidated by conversation around them? Do I speak very seriously from the heart even though, honestly, it is somewhat emotionally taxing to do so?
Or do I take a whimsical approach to counterbalance that heaviness? After all, I mostly specialized in funny stuff for a long time? And humor and comedy are still very much a part of the show I do. I mean, look at the title.
I’ll keep it simple:
We make a show every week that provides new insight and fellowship about mental health. People are helped by it. To make that show requires money. We have to pay our producers and engineers. We have to have the equipment we need. I have to be able to concentrate on making this podcast to make it as good as it can be, which I couldn’t do if this was a hobby. It’s not a hobby. It’s a cause.
Please recognize that simple reality and donate today.
A reminder of some THINGS you can GET by donating:
1. Satisfaction that you are helping put something good in the world.
2. At even $5 per month, you get SLEEPING WITH CELEBRITIES, our marathon sleep aid show, featuring delightful and entertaining people being as dull as they can be. John Hodgman, Peter Sagal, Janet Varney, Lisa Hanawalt, Jesse Thorn and Jordan Morris, Laura House, Tre’Vell Anderson and Jarrett Hill, Bridger Winegar, and Josh Gondelman combine for a show over three and a half hours long dedicated to zonking you out.
3. At $10 and up, you get SLEEPING WITH CELEBRITIES and choose an original embroidered patch of your favorite Max Fun show. Even if it’s not ours! But ours is awesome and features Oops Nope, our mascot, who is a fish that climbs waterfalls.
4. The prizes keep racking up the higher you go. Creativity Packs, which include a card made by me of how to loosen up your stuck mind! Messenger Bags! Caps! Hangouts with Max Fun hosts!
Here is the theme song to SLEEPING WITH CELEBRITIES, which I sing a capella:
S.E. Cupp on this week’s podcast
Yes, this newsletter and the entire Depresh Mode family of fine (, strange, eclectic) products also contains a podcast! Which is the focus 50 weeks out of the year!
This week is my conversation with S.E. Cupp, who you might have seen on CNN and other cable news outlets over the years, generally taking a conservative point of view. I was interested in talking with her (and so I did!) because of a breakdown she had last year.
S. E., and she tells this story in the episode, was out running errands, waiting in line at a store, glanced at her phone to idly scroll through Twitter, and ran across an image of a child who had covid and was on a ventilator. And instantly, the world kind of spun out. She had a panic attack and it was a doozy. She got treatment right away but was unable to read or concentrate for weeks. Her work suffered, her state of mind was irrevocably altered.
We talk about what might have led up to that moment and there are plenty of contributors: a career spent reporting on events like the war in Syria and Sandy Hook, the conservative movement and Republican party radicalized beyond her ability to recognize them, and unchecked use of social media.
She’s better now, though never the same, and has some good thoughts on how she’s learned to approach Facebook or Twitter with intentionality. That is, don’t go on there unless you know WHY you’re going on. Is it to be entertained? Fine, but go in and look for that. Is it to catch up on a news story? Okay, but get that information and get out.
I didn’t really know S.E. before this interview and I’m not even a big cable news watcher. But this is one of my favorite interviews I’ve done on the show.
Kevin Kelly’s 103 things to know
The… technologist?… futurist?… writer?… guy Kevin Kelly just turned 70 and offered a long list of things he wished he had known all along.
Here are a few:
• No one is as impressed with your possessions as you are.
• Dont ever work for someone you dont want to become.
• Cultivate 12 people who love you, because they are worth more than 12 million people who like you.
• Dont keep making the same mistakes; try to make new mistakes.
• If you stop to listen to a musician or street performer for more than a minute, you owe them a dollar.
• Anything you say before the word “but” does not count.
• When you forgive others, they may not notice, but you will heal. Forgiveness is not something we do for others; it is a gift to ourselves.
Good stuff but I don’t know what my man has against apostrophes.
Mental health apps have crappy security and privacy
In the latest iteration of the guide, the team analyzed 32 mental health and prayer apps. Of those apps, 29 were given a “privacy not included” warning label, indicating that the team had concerns about how the app managed user data. The apps are designed for sensitive issues like mental health conditions, yet collect large amounts of personal data under vague privacy policies, the team said in the statement. Most apps also had poor security practices, letting users create accounts with weak passwords despite containing deeply personal information.
And the religious ones are the worst of all.