Sunday, 16 November 2014

Raffy the Psychiatric Labrador

For whatever it may be worth, I've recently dusted off my wax crayons and returned to comics, specifically a cartoon strip called Raffy the Psychiatric Labrador for Southwark Mental Health News #126. It's just four panels, but Southwark Mental Health News is something deserving of support, so it seemed worth mentioning here. The magazine is put together by Robert Dellar, author of the excellent Splitting In Two: Mad Pride and Punk Rock Oblivion (published by Unkant, a thumping good read, and reviewed within by Stewart Home) and is more in the line of yer proper fanzine than the list of charity coffee mornings and biscuit making evening classes one might anticipate given the title; and it's print, a physical thing with pages which you hold in your hands, which is nice. Whilst
Southwark Mental Health News is undoubtedly published with a fairly specific readership in mind, it should be of interest to anyone who has ever had any sort of dealing with the psychiatric profession, and not just residents of Southwark (as I was myself about five years ago in case anyone was wondering).

Raffy, by the way, is an actual sniffer dog employed to locate illegal narcotic substances smuggled in by patients at Maudsley hospital, usually tobacco which has been banned from the premises because some fucking genius decided that any person of sufficient derangement as to be sectioned under the mental health act and admitted for treatment, observation or whatever might also benefit from finding themselves additionally forced to give up smoking whilst in the bin because it's so unhealthy and makes your clothes smell blah blah blah... the idea seemed ripe for sarcastic commentary. Also, there are reviews of CDs by UNIT and a couple of groups I've never heard of but who sound worth hearing.

Southwark Mental Health News #126 is free if you (I think) send an A4 stamped addressed envelope to:

Southwark Association for Mental Health,
Cambridge House,
1, Addington Square,
SE5 0HF,
United Kingdom.

...or possibly you could phone 020 7358 7279 and get yourself on the mailing list. I have no idea what you would do should you live outside the United Kingdom, maybe try the phone number, or ask me if you're here in the US as I have a couple of extra copies.

The next issue is supposed to have a free CD of various Mad Pride associated groups which is sure to be well worth a listen, so get yourself on the mailing list if you want to cop one of those.