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The Stress Doc Letter
Cybernotes from the Online Psychohumorist (tm)

November 1998, No. 5

Dear Readers. At the beginning of each month I will include at least one of my articles and updated info on my speaking programs and workshops. The other weeks will be a gumbo of my writngs and your humor submissions. For more articles on a variety of topics, try these links: www.stressdoc.com or on AOL -- <A HREF="www.stressdoc.com">STRESSDOC HOMEPAGE</A> or Keyword: Stress Doc, <A HREF="aol://4344:972.doc.1264535.556723207">The Stress Doc @ Online Psych</A> . And here's an AOL link with with series of articles on downsizing, layoffs and career transition, <A HREF="aol://4344:972.docwork.1255066.562088752">The Stress Doc Interview @ Online Psych</A> .

If you know others who would like to receive "The Stress Doc Newsletter," please pass their names along. And, if you wish not to receive the newsletter, just email me with, "unsubscribe."

After an unexpected shower of calls and correspondences from major news organizations, corporations and publications in a two week span, the Stress Doc, reflects on the significance of this media-rites of passage - from new and established offline magazines to a reporter and a mental health director exploring the pain and needs of their respective constitutencies. Are you ready to start building a professional or business presence in cyberspace?

The Web: Madness or Mistress, Mystery or Master? Part II

3. Academic Flashdancing. The third unexpected inquiry was an email from the Executive Editor of a new, four-color offline magazine, Adult Ed Today. Having discovered from my website that I was a national speaker, Carol solicited an article. Her magazine targets university and Fortune 500 decision-makers looking for high quality speakers. Of course, in addition to an article, there was a chance to be listed in the National Speaker Section, a color head shot of the speaker, plus 1/6th of a bio/topic page. I wonder how quickly she sensed a Stress Doc fish was on her advertising line?

When the glossy publication arrived via snail mail, I was hooked. There on the cover was a small photo of Betty Eadie, author of the life-after-death best seller, Embraced By the Light. And the main cover girl was none other than Joan Rivers…Embraced By the Mouth. (Also, a complex Hollywood, life- after-death story.) Of course, I'm just being playful about Miss Joan being mouthy. Hey, I can't talk. My professional slogan - "Have Stress? Will Travel: A Smart Mouth for Hire!" Well, if it takes money to make money, I've put some money where my mouth is. So all you meeting and conference planners, check out Adult Ed Today.

4. Still Going Postal. A couple of days had passed. No surprising media- rites hurtling down from cyberspace. But then…a journalist from US News and World Report calls. An online series about my struggle with depression and eventual trial with Prozac (email stressdoc@aol.com) mentioned my demanding year as a stress and violence prevention consultant for a major East Coast Processing and Distribution Plant of the US Postal Service. The journalist caught my essay on Mental Heath Net, an internet clearinghouse which features some of my writings. She wanted to know what made the USPS such a stressful workplace environment. Perhaps I'll share my answer in a future column. Just keep these points in mind: The mail never stops and if you think you have an issue with junk mail, trust me, you can't even fathom the extent of the problem! Anyway, we had close to an hour phone interview. I'll let you know when the article hits the street.

5. Northern Burnout. This call was pretty straightforward. A director of a mental health/social service agency in Ottawa, Canada involved with the elderly asked for material on burnout. He was preparing for staff development on preventing and recovering from what I call "The Erosive Spiral." (Email me for my burnout packet.) Of course, I reminded him of my portability and that I could be bought. (See 3. above.)

6. California Dreamin. At About 8:40 EST, while getting ready for my Tuesday, 9-10:30pm AOL/Digital City "Shrink Rap and Group Chat (for AOL folks, here's the link <A HREF="aol://4344:363.gorkin.5732839.568857121">Dig City Promo - Stress Doc</A> ), the phone rings. It's a reporter from the LA Times wanting information on employees who have been multiply downsized. The reporter's timing was impeccable. That morning I had led a "Managing Stress, Loss and Change through Humor" training class for ex-federal employees/contractors who had lost their positions due to reorganization, reduction in force (RIFs) and other ax-cronyms. Over the past months I have encountered numerous aerospace engineers, computer specialists, proposal writers, etc. who have been unmercifully bounced around. After providing the Times reporter some organizational resource phone numbers, he then casually hits me with a number: "By the way, did you know that according to Hot Spot ratings (a Nielsen-like service that measures online traffic) for the topic of "layoffs" yours is the fourth most visited site on the entire web?!

My initial neuronal eruption was, "You've got to be bs-ing me!" When I articulated my disbelief, he assured me it was true. And, I proceed to have another 48 hour cybermania attack.

Again the message is clear: With hard work, by collaborating with folks who can do strategic web design and search engine placement, by offering useful, stimulating and engaging reader-friendly content to a variety of internet forums cyberportals open. "Netrepreneurs" can market and sell soft, "high touch" products and services on the internet. I'm still offering my Online Coaching Services for developing your program content and expanding a marketing presence. So, get moving, get psyched, stop procrastinating, jump into the cyberether. Have no fear (well, maybe a little) the Stress Doc is here to help you…"Go web young cyber-ite!" and, of course…Practice Safe Stress!

Fast-breaking News: A Speaker's Bureau rep in Connecticut specializing in the insurance and financial services industries emailed today about becoming part of their stable. She discovered me through my monthly column on the internet magazine, Financial Services Journal Online.

The Stress Doc Newsletter The Higher Power of Humor Section...

The second section will consist of humor material that filters down from cyberspace. This week's first two jokes range from the delightfully silly (Two Old Men) to the cutting edge (Well, Isn't That Nice). I do enjoy lampooning pomposity. And the third, well, all I can say is...Never Lie To Your Mother.

Seek the higher power of humor...May the Farce Be with You!

TWO OLD MEN

From SWells1835@aol.com

Two elderly gentlemen, who had been without sex for several years, decided they needed to visit a whore house. When they arrived at the house, the Madame took one look at them and decided she wasn't going to waste any of her girls on these two old men. So she used "blowup" dolls instead. She put the dolls in each man's room and left them to their business.

After the two men were finished, they started for home and got to talking. The first man said, "I think the girl I had was dead. She never moved, talked or groaned...how was it for you?"

The second man replied, "I think mine was a witch."

The first man asked, "How's that?"

"Well," said the second man, "when I nibbled on her breast ... she farted and flew out the window!"

"WELL, ISN'T THAT NICE"

From URAQTPYE2@aol.com

Two delicate flowers of Southern womanhood were conversing on the porch swing of a large white-pillared mansion. The first woman said, "When my first child was born, my husband built this beautiful mansion for me."

The second woman commented, "Well, isn't that nice."

The first woman continued "When my second child was born, my husband bought me that fine Cadillac automobile you see parked in the drive."

Again, the second woman commented, "Well, isn't that nice."

The first woman boasted "Then, when my third child was born, my husband bought me this exquisite diamond bracelet."

Yet again, the second woman commented, "Well, isn't that nice."

The first woman then asked her companion, "What did your husband buy for you when you had your first child?"

The second woman replied "My husband sent me to charm school."

"Charm school!" the first woman cried, "Land sakes, child, what on Earth for?"

The second woman responded, "So that instead of saying 'who gives a flying fuck,' I learned to say 'Well, isn't that nice'"

NEVER LIE TO YOUR MOTHER

Bogie 361@aol.com

John invited his mother over for dinner. During the meal, his mother couldn't help noticing how beautiful John's roommate was. She had long been suspicious of a relationship between John and his roommate and this only made her more curious.

Over the course of the evening, while watching the two interact, she started to wonder if there was more between John and the roommate than met the eye. Reading his mom's thoughts, John volunteered, "I know what you must be thinking, but I assure you, Julie and I are just roommates." About a week later, Julie came to John and said, "Ever since your mother came to dinner, I've been unable to find the beautiful silver gravy ladle. You don't suppose she took it, do you?" John said, "Well, I doubt it, but I'll write her a letter just to be sure."

So he sat down and wrote: "Dear Mother, I'm not saying you 'did' take a gravy ladle from my house, and I'm not saying you 'did not' take a gravy ladle. But the fact remains that one has been missing ever since you were here for dinner."

Several days later, John received a letter from his mother which read:

"Dear Son, I'm not saying that you 'do' sleep with Julie, and I'm not saying that you 'do not' sleep with Julie. But the fact remains that if she was sleeping in her own bed, she would have found the gravy ladle by now.

Love, Mom"

And, of course...Practice Safe Stress!

Mark Gorkin, "The Stress Doc," Licensed Clinical Social Worker, is a nationally recognized speaker, workshop leader and author on stress, reorganizational change, anger, team building, creativity and humor. He is also the internet's and the nation's leading "Psychohumorist." The Stress Doc is a columnist for the popular cyber-newsletter, Humor From The Edge -- HUMOR FROM THE EDGE HOME PAGE . Mark is also the "Online Psychohumorist" for the major AOL mental health resource network, Online Psych -- ONLINE PSYCH: THE STRESS DOC and Financial Services Journal Online. And he is an offline writer for two mental health/substance abuse publications -- Treatment Today and Paradigm Magazine. His motto: Have Stress? Will Travel: A Smart Mouth for Hire! Reach "The Doc" at (202) 232-8662, email: Stress Doc@aol.com, or check out his "Hot Site" website: http://www.stressdoc.com or click STRESS DOC HOMEPAGE. (The site was selected as a USA Today Online "Hot Site" and designated a four-star, top- rated site by Mental Health Net.)

** For his free newsletter, Notes from the Online Psychohumorist ™ or for info on the Stress Doc's Online Coaching program, email stressdoc@aol.com .