luring the obsessives

In an attempt to lure me to Portland, a reader there just sent what seems to be evidence of a thriving OCD-friendly culture… This is just an aside, but if I were working in the field of economic development, and if I were looking to create a really thriving area, hospitable to the so-called “creative class” and fertile for the growth of “knowledge economy” jobs, I’d launch a national ad campaign not to attract gay transplants, as some cities have done, but to attract people with OCD. (Cities should fight over us, it’s my belief, like professional sports teams fight over graduating college athletes.) Maybe it’s just that I’m biased, but I really do think that a few busloads of Obsessives, if given the right tools and incentives, could turn almost city around… If nurtured, we could be like super heroes.

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9 Comments

  1. Tony Buttons Esq.
    Posted December 12, 2005 at 11:18 am | Permalink

    Instead of an advertising campaign designed to lure the Obsessives, how about a government initiative to round them up?

  2. kez
    Posted December 12, 2005 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

    we ARE super-heros… and we even have our own action figure and we always carry large antiseptic hand wipes… the kind that kills germs of course.

  3. Anonymatt
    Posted December 12, 2005 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

    I’m sure Ypsi would’ve gone down the tubes by now had you not been posting photos of random bits of trash you find in the street and your yard. I hope they’re aware of your sacrifice for the community.

  4. sandy
    Posted December 12, 2005 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

    Busch’s in Saline has those sani-wipes for shopping carts (I wasn’t sure if the picture was from Portland).

    My (9 yr. old) son’s OCD is driving me crazy lately. His rituals include tapping the floor or his shoes *after* washing his hands. Not what I want to see during cold & flu season, lol.

    I think you should do an OCD superhero cartoon book. A hell of a lot of people would buy it.

  5. mark
    Posted December 12, 2005 at 11:32 pm | Permalink

    Sorry to hear about your son’s OCD, Sandy. If it’s any consolation, I think that OCD is one of the more treatable mental illnesses, especially with early detection… And I’ll add the comic book idea to my list of projects. It’s good to know that at least one person would buy it (which would be a lot more attention than some of my projects have received).

    And, Matt, my point was that people with OCD could do great things – if given the proper support. You would be amazed at how much I could do for this city if they gave me and office a staff.

  6. DM
    Posted December 13, 2005 at 11:26 am | Permalink

    When I am down in Portland and stop at a gas station, I usually forget to let an attendant pump the gas. Apparently it is a state law that all gas stations must provide full service. Seems so old fashioned. They wash your windows for you too. The beneift of this is that one with OCD would not have to touch the pump or the window washing handles.

  7. Anonymatt
    Posted December 14, 2005 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

    I don’t mean to pick on OCD sufferers. I’m just always amused when Mark only sees the OCD angle of something. (It doesn’t sound unusual that an OCD sufferer would be obsessed with OCD him/herself.) I would have thought that the prevalence of cheap sanitizing wipes that have come to the market in recent years would have been responsible, not a desire to cater to OCD sufferers. Plenty of people use sani-wipes in this country, and I would guess only a small fraction are Howie Mandel-level germophobes.

    My favorite example is this one:

    http://markmaynard.com/index.php/2003/04/07/title_923

    in which Mark says of the common sense approach of prepping the food before you start cooking:

    “Thats the essence of OCD, having all of your ingredients cleaned, pealed, sorted and chopped before even turning on the stove.”

    No, that’s just the essence of mise en place.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mise_en_place

    It’s against the law to pump your own gas in New Jersey also.

  8. Ken
    Posted December 14, 2005 at 8:27 pm | Permalink

    We have those wipes at the Kroger we shop at down here in Georgia. In fact, it has the exact poster with it. When I first saw them, I used one and felt like the hugest dork while doing it.

    I thought the reason they put those out was because of the sanitary wipe commercial on TV that uses the song, “Can’t Touch This”. (Poor Hammer!) There is one clip where this fat guy sneezes big-time into both ands and then graps hold of his cart with those big germy paws and rolls it back to the holding pen. You know it is happening.

  9. DM
    Posted December 14, 2005 at 9:46 pm | Permalink

    Ahhhhh-KEN! (bless you)

    That commercial really is bad. Touching things in public is bad enough already withouth them showing us a worst case scenario. When I see someone sneeze or cough in public, I hold my breath and try to get about ten feet away from the detonation point before I inhale. And the touching of communal objects is one of those things that gets ugly when one starts thinking about it. It is similar to when you are in a quiet room and the really subtle ringing in your ear turns into a deafingly loud siren the more you think about it.

    That sound could be from fluke worms playing pinochole in one’s snout though. Poor hygiene leads to card playing parasites, so use those wipes for godsake!

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