“You are such a tight-ass”

Good-bye depression coverHow to Good-bye Depression: If you constrict anus 100 times everyday. Malarkey? Or Effective Way?

Submitter: One of our staff found this gem on the shelves today. It’s so bad, I worry that it’s a joke. My first response to the book was OMG WTF? 111!!!!!!1111!! I never thought that I would want to explain to someone that constricting your anus and having good bowel movements would really not do a thing for their depression. I should mention that a good part of the book are usenet postings and responses.

Here’s a sampling:

“By the way, most of us have to enter The University of Depression in  our thirties or forties because of the complaint about opposite sex, parents, boss, money, work or post.  After graduation from it, most of us have to enter The Graduate School of Depression after the age of 50 because of the death of spouse, divorce, big lost love, trouble about son or daughter, or loss of health, money, work, post.” (pg. 89)

“Repent is to change your bad feeling. Happy good feeling is power. Happy good feelings can give you a supernatural power, cure diseases, and change your surroundings for better.” (pg. 179).

This should not have made it through our library doors, ever.

Holly: Oh. My. Gosh.  I think we just found #1 on our yearly top ten list.  It’s unconventional, sure, but mostly it is bad writing with no apparent authority.


  1. It reads like it was originally written in Japanese and then translated with Babelfish or some such program.

  2. I lived in Japan for two years and this just screams originally written in Japanese and then translated. The original writing may be bad as well but it is made 100 times worse by the horrible translation.

  3. OMG LOL so many questions… How did this get published? Why is it in a library? Why was this even written? Did anyone ever check it out?

  4. I feel less depressed just reading the excerpt because it is so funny! If I read the whole book while constricting my anus, I may become the happiest person in town! (Love the bad English translation)

  5. I just checked WorldCat, and this title is owned by 7 libraries: 3 academic and 4 public. Hopefully whoever did their collection development in 2000 has retired…I’d hate to think that librarians who purchased this book are still running around out there!

  6. Read it as if Yoda was explaining it to you, yes. I can hear his voice in my head, I can.

  7. I was struggling to think of something to say about this. Then on one of your widgets on the side of the page I saw that Lillian Jackson Braun passed away.
    So the best thing I can offer is that I’m now thoroughly depressed, and I’m sure that no amount of anal constriction is going to help.

  8. How did this ever find its way past a publisher let alone onto a library shelf?

    As for the question posed by the title, if I had to guess, I’d say malarkey.

  9. Hmmm, I can think of something to do with the anal part of the body that might make one feel better, but it probably wouldn’t be appropriate enough for any library book nor would it actually be a real cure for depression.

  10. Well, if it will give me Happy Good Feelings and supernatural power, I’m all for it. Start the count. 1, 2, 3…

  11. A donation maybe? Surely no-one paid for it? But still, was the librarian who received it blind? :O

  12. Constricting your anus 100 times a day will NOT cure depression. It will, however, enable you to open beer bottles in a highly novel fashion, potentially offering exciting new possibilities on the cabaret circuit – which MAY cure your depression!

  13. “Malarkey? or Effective way?” I think we can all make a pretty good guess as to the correct answer to that question.

  14. Rarely do you see such efficient writing!
    How much more information do we need than what’s on the front cover.


    I want one for my bathroom library.


  15. I worked at the library when I was at university. A co-worker found this book on the shelf and it was a long standing joke among those of us who worked in the stacks to read sections of it out loud to each other.
    I had completely forgotten about it until this post. Thanks for the nostalgia!

  16. Deb! I love it!
    We should always ask ourselves that exact question when faced with a decision.

  17. Well if you are depressed over your bowel problems, then constricting your anus could very well cure your depression.

  18. Haha awesome! I bought a copy of this when it made the rounds on the web back in the late 90s and it’s truly, truly, truly outrageous. According to my roommate at the time who sat zazen meditation & did a lot of qi gong, tightening the core body muscles (between your anus and abdomen) is actually a very important part of the process, but both the original writing *and* self-translation on display here are just so bad that it just comes off as a modern day “English as She is Spoke”. In any case, don’t miss the section about how Don Juan Matus taught Carlos Castaneda the “right way of walking” (Curl the fingers of your hands, draw your attention to your arms, and keep on gazing at just above the horizon with the middle of your eyebrows opened while walking.)

  19. Good lord! I couldn’t sleep last night so I picked up my i-phone and started to web crawl whilst lying in bed with hopes of becoming sleepy again. Coming upon this article sent me into a frenzy of giggles that not only further woke me up, but also woke my husband up as the bed shook with my attempt to suppress them. Good stuff!

  20. This book has been a huge hit on Amazon.com for years! Be sure to read some of the entertaining reviews. =)

  21. Holy moly just came across this from another link! I love the subtitle reading in poor translation “All Your Base Are Now Belong To Us”. Could be the best book you’ve ever published!

  22. Hahahaha… 😀

    Judging by the Amazon reviews, this book may well help with depression — just not in the way its author intended. 🙂 To quote one reviewer: “I still randomly open to a page, read it, and feel better about whatever the heck was bringing me down in the first place. Get this book for comedy, not for advice.”

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