“A lot of the time, if someone says they hear voices, you immediately jump to psychotic illness, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia,” [the Yale psychologist Philip] Corlett said. But research suggests hearing voices is not all that uncommon. A survey from 1991—the largest of its kind since—found that 10 to 15 percent of people in the U.S. experienced sensory hallucinations of some sort within their lifetime. And other research, as well as growing advocacy movements, suggest hearing voices isn’t always a sign of psychological distress.
The researchers at Yale were looking for a group of people who hear voices at least once a day, and had never before interacted with the mental-health-care system. They wanted to understand, as Corlett put it, those who do not suffer when “the mind deviates from consensual reality.”
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A massive apartment building in D.C. has lived many lives—from fancy hotel to one of the last bastions of affordable housing. Now it’s on the brink of another change. This is the story of the Woodner—an entire neighborhood under one roof.
It’s easy to talk about gentrification, but it’s much harder to admit when you yourself are a gentrifier. If you live in a community going through rapid change, here’s the right way—and the wrong way—to be a neighbor.
Clover remembers her high-school summer job—cleaning the meat department at a local grocery store:
I scraped the floor, bleached the butcher blocks and cutting boards, and disassembled the hamburger grinder, carefully scouring each part. I also dismantled the chicken rotisserie and cleaned each part. I bagged up all the scraps, knotting the trash bags securely so they wouldn't attract vermin to the dumpster area.
It was a great first job. It taught me to cheerfully perform objectively disgusting work, an invaluable career asset. It wiped out all traces of teenage vanity; when the best-looking boy in my class came in to buy a bag of chips and saw me—hair frizzy from the steam of the sanitizer, hands red and raw from bleach solution, ugly store apron proudly advertising my membership in the working class—I still had to look him in the eye and ask, “Are you finding what you’re looking for?”
Happy birthday to Ria’s mother (a year younger than the computer mouse), Drew (the same age as Chance the Rapper), Stevie’s friend Meegie (a year younger than Disneyland), Dormand’s friend Johnnie Ray (who came of age as the U.S. won the Battle of Okinawa), and Leslie’s Aunt Flo (a year younger than the FIFA World Cup). Leslie writes:
My Aunt Flo’s mantra is: “Things have a way of working out.” She’s been right before. I sure hope she’s right now.
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