The One About Depression And Kickboxing With Special Guest Lily Taylor

November 14, 2021 by , featured in Bunny Ears Podcast
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Macaulay Culkin is joined by Bunny Ears CCO Shawn DePasquale and Head of Merchandise Lily Taylor for a frank (but funny) discussion about depression. Lily shares her harrowing personal battle, taking Mack and Shawn from the loss of her mother through her travels to Thailand where she became a kickboxer for over a year (seriously). There’s lots of laughs along the way, but depression is no joke! If you struggle with suicidal thoughts, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

The rundown

If you struggled to get out of bed today, then this week’s episode about depression will let you know you’re not alone. Lily, Bunny Ears’ Shirt Overseer, talks about her background in Muay Thai and how it guided her through an immensely stressful time in her life. There’s a blunt analysis of how the anniversary of a loved one’s suicide can haunt you, how physical fighting can become a productive outlet for your emotions, and how concussions can sometimes be hilarious in retrospect. There’s also discussion of whether Mack would ever willingly get into a fight (to which the answer is no. Absolutely not. He’s a sweet boy).

Mack opens up about his own experiences with depression, as well as having to be the “strong one” in a time of crisis (and learning how to take care of yourself during tough times). Together they discuss the long, winding paths that can lead one to depression, how it can become a weirdly comforting (albeit, unhealthy) routine, and why paying a stranger to listen to you talk about what’s in your head can be a big help. Like, a qualified therapist stranger. Not a bartender or some dude on the street.

Also, learn about Mack’s pubic hair care routine for reasons we’re still not sure of—and what his self-cleaning litter box sounds like! Well, his cat’s litter box. Maybe we’ll learn about Mack’s personal litter box in another episode. But for now, join us in laughing at the lighter side of a serious subject.

Happy listening!

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1 Comment

  1. The strangeness of Elijah’s gun misfiring is nervously glossed over with laughter in the sense that there’s an element of gallows humor involved in a botched suicide attempt.

    Apart from the sheer luck of a misfire, there’s a scientific aspect to this about which Elijah is probably unaware. In fact, he touches twice on elements of deep, dark clinical depression that are truly unusual — perhaps even primitive reactions to being closer to the dead than to the living – both of which are highly unusual manifestations of clinical depression.

    Before I get to the suicide attempt, I’d like to first address Elijah’s immersion into a world of horror films and horror food. Surrounding yourself with these things is not unusual in that it’s a variant of something about which I am very familiar.

    When I had my depression, immediately following the horrible death of my brother, I would only watch very old black and white films, and I had to know, thanks to IMDB, if every actor in that film was living or dead. If I found that one cast member was still alive, I wouldn’t watch it. Elijah’s horror movie thing is just like my experience. It’s the same thing played out in a different way, and I understand it completely. There is a name for this phenomenon, but I forget what it is.

    More importantly – regarding the misfired gun – there is a fascinating mental illness, often associated with depression and unexpected survival called Cotard’s Syndrome. While I never experienced this, it’s a very real mental illness about which I had to research and write for an overly long article I wrote for one of the horse racing publications that employ me.

    Regarding Cotard’s Syndrome: When the gun misfired, Elijah heard the sound, but he was still THERE. How did his mind cope with that? There is an element of “high strangeness” to something like that. To Elijah, it may have seemed like a few seconds where his mind reacted with a fleeting moment of genuine panic.

    In his conscious mind, this panic may have diminished in a few minutes or a few hours, but it probably lasted for weeks or months in his subconscious. This would explain why he didn’t try a second shot. Keep in mind that a genuine panic attack is a life-changing event, and that most people almost always throw around the, “I had a panic attack” thing without knowing the true horror of a real panic attack.

    Anyway, a person afflicted with Cotard’s Syndrome lives in a delusional state wherein they firmly believe that they’re dead, but because no one believes them or acknowledges their death, they’re forced to exist in what they perceive as a fake reality. Cotard’s sufferers usually insist to whomever will listen that they have died, but their demise and decay is not being recognized or duly noted by the proper authorities. Mostly, the delusion lasts for a very short time – even brief moments, which was seems to have happened to Elijah, but in some cases, the delusion continues for the rest of a person’s life. I had one psychiatrist tell me that it’s all about the nearness of what poets called, Pale Death, or the personification of a Grim Reaper, and that sometimes he can give you a glancing blow just to shake things up. This metaphorically explains panic attacks – real ones – and Elijah’s very real brush with real death.

    Anyway, I truly enjoyed this podcast. You did a great job of enlivening a dark situation. Sorry for the long discourse, but it’s what I do. In real life I am a very happy and content person. I’m around racehorses all day, and there’s nothing better for the inside of a man than the outside of a horse…I think Teddy Roosevelt said that.

    thanks, guys.
    David D. Mattia

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