Thursday, August 18, 2011

Blast from the past!


Another of those books I remember floating around the house when I was a kid. I doubt my parents actually read it. Where it came from I don't know. Where it went I don't know. The 70s! Man! Dig? And the omnipresent smiley face.

From Wikipedia:

I'm OK, You're OK, by Thomas A Harris MD, is one of the best selling self-help books ever published. It is a practical guide to Transactional Analysis as a method for solving problems in life. From its first publication during 1967, the popularity of I'm OK, You're OK gradually increased until, during 1972, its name made the New York Times Best Seller list and remained there for almost two years. It is estimated by the publisher to have sold over 15 million copies to date and to have been translated into over a dozen languages.

The phrase "I'm OK, You're OK" is one of four "life positions" that each of us may take. The four positions are:

1. I'm Not OK, You're OK

2. I'm Not OK, You're Not OK

3. I'm OK, You're Not OK

4. I'm OK, You're OK

"Good times are comin', but they're sure comin' slow" as Neil Young sang it.

29 Comments:

At 8/18/2011 6:19 AM, Blogger Jordan said...

You're ok, John.

 
At 8/18/2011 6:23 AM, Blogger John Gallaher said...

You're OK, Jordan.

 
At 8/18/2011 6:29 AM, Blogger Jordan said...

Thanks!

 
At 8/18/2011 6:33 AM, Blogger John Gallaher said...

Well, for both of us, it's still depending on various uncertain parameters of observable reality, natch:

"Rather than working with abstract concepts of consciousness, Harris suggests that the pioneering work of brain surgeon Wilder Penfield in uncovering the neurological basis of memory could offer complementary insights grounded in observable reality. Specifically, Harris emphasizes reports of Wilder’s experiments stimulating small areas of the brains of conscious (but locally anaesthetised) patients undergoing brain surgery. Though the patients were conscious that they were on an operating table, the stimulation also caused them to recall specific past events in vivid detail — not just facts of the event, but as a vivid "reliving" of "what the patient saw and heard and felt and understood" when the memory was created. Based on these experiments, Harris postulates that the brain records past experiences like a tape recorder, in such a manner that it is possible subsequently to relive past experiences with all their original emotional intensity."

 
At 8/18/2011 6:41 AM, Blogger Jordan said...

I liked it better when we were ok without lying on operating tables with electrodes in our brains.

 
At 8/18/2011 7:09 AM, Blogger John Gallaher said...

One must make these sacrifices in order to theorize one's OKness.

 
At 8/18/2011 7:15 AM, Blogger Jordan said...

Not ok!

 
At 8/18/2011 7:20 AM, Blogger Kent Johnson said...

Jordan,

How about this for an OK thing to do? Seriously, because I would like to do it:

That you and I sit down over a cup of coffee or tea somewhere, across the table from one another, and just talk for a while. Just the two of us.

We could do this at AWP, in Chicago, if you will be there, or we could do it in NYC sometime soon, and I could give you the date when I'll be there.

What do you think? You can tell me back-channel if you like, or here; I thought I would make the offer here, given our public j(ok)iness with each other.

onward to OK, or in some orbit of it,

Kent

 
At 8/18/2011 7:22 AM, Blogger John Gallaher said...

I, on the other hand, am trying to meet as few people as possible this year at AWP. I think I might even hide beneath my table and talk using finger puppets.

 
At 8/18/2011 7:27 AM, Blogger Kent Johnson said...

Well, John, I was about to invite you for a coffee or beer. Let's meet! (I'm starting to sound like I have not a trace of social anxiety.)

This is the first time I've been on a panel at AWP (though it's a reading): I've been on about seven *proposed* panels over the years, all of them rejected, so this is like going to Burma, or something.

 
At 8/18/2011 7:30 AM, Blogger Jordan said...

Why in the world would I want to do that, Kent?

 
At 8/18/2011 7:33 AM, Blogger John Gallaher said...

I'm going to habe to spend most of my time at the table, I'm afraid. It's depressing. But please come by and talk with the finger puppets. They're much more outgoing than I am.

 
At 8/18/2011 7:48 AM, Blogger Kent Johnson said...

>Why in the world would I want to do that, Kent?

OK!

No, I didn't think you'd want to. But thought I'd make the offer, in case. It's still open, if you get your courage up.

Regardless, your question above is priceless.

 
At 8/18/2011 7:58 AM, Blogger Jordan said...

Kent, what I imagined you thought was that you might bait me into committing something like the tantrums you posted here yesterday.

I'm done here. Thanks, John. Good luck.

 
At 8/18/2011 8:02 AM, Blogger Kent Johnson said...

Tantrums? Huh.

Easy now, Jordan. You don't have to do any of this.

Come back!

 
At 8/18/2011 8:05 AM, Blogger Kent Johnson said...

John,

Could you send Jordan the Amazon URL for the Harris book?

I just ordered it, but for some reason my Copy function isn't working, so I can't send it to him myself.

 
At 8/18/2011 8:09 AM, Blogger John Gallaher said...

No. What the two of you have is special. I wouldn't want to get in the middle of it.

But thanks for thinking of me!

 
At 8/18/2011 8:19 AM, Blogger Kent Johnson said...

It IS special, yes.

I wasn't asking you to get in the middle of it, I was just asking you to help make it MORE special.

Though it will surely get much more special in about nine months, or so, you'll see.

 
At 8/18/2011 8:20 AM, Blogger John Gallaher said...

But who will show up for the paternity test?

 
At 8/18/2011 8:34 AM, Blogger Kent Johnson said...

>But who will show up for the paternity test?

In fact, this is a very nice way of troping my reference.

 
At 8/18/2011 8:47 AM, Blogger Kent Johnson said...

Also in somewhat-tether to this I'm OK, You're OK thinger:

An interesting series of posts and accompanying discussions regarding "Poetic Factions" over at Montevidayo blog

http://www.montevidayo.com/

 
At 8/18/2011 11:34 AM, Anonymous Annie said...

One of my favorite 70s books is Fear of Flying.

 
At 8/18/2011 1:39 PM, Blogger Steven D. Schroeder said...

Transactional analysis is actually quite fascinating. I recommend the book Games People Play which, while also somewhat dated in its examples, is a great summary of the basics and a fun outline of, well, its title.

 
At 8/20/2011 6:34 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You know, if you combine I'm OK, You're OK with Fear of Flying, you get "I'm OK, You're Flying.

Self-help for the New Millennium. You heard it first here.

 
At 8/21/2011 4:33 PM, Anonymous Annie said...

Or Fear You're OK. I want to be fucked up, but I fear I'm OK.

 
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