Thursday, November 25, 2010


I am sending another draft to the New England Journal of Higher Education, and hope they will be interested in this next piece on suicide (they recently published an article I wrote about student loan debtors with health problems). They are a great crew of individuals, and I'm glad that we're forging a positive, working relationship.

I've written a lot about suicide, and have a sad story to share about a father who recently told me that if it weren't for his daughters - who are also indentured educated servants - he'd kill himself. I got pretty choked up by his confession.

In any event, if you are willing to share your story about being suicidal because of your student loan debt, please send me an email (ccrynjohannsen AT Also, if you know of someone who committed suicide as a result of their student loan debt, I'd like to hear your story. All people will remain anonymous.

It is a bleak subject, but it is one that needs to be discussed.

On that rather dark note, I do wish each and everyone of you a happy Thanksgiving. I didn't think we'd be having turkey, but we're getting two from an army base in Seoul. So enjoy this day.


Anonymous said...

This painting is really scary.
It reminded me of this:

But if one just substitutes the name Al Lord for Damien, what's the difference?

And here:

Just scroll ahead to 6:33. The hand reaching up from the grave is that of Sallie Mae. To drag you to down to debtor's Hell.

I still get chills from this scene, especially when her mother is trying to tell her that everything is "Allright"

When it is not.

Anonymous said...

...there were many individuals in the crowd who had found leisure to become aware of the presence of a masked figure which had arrested the attention of no single individual before. And the rumor of this new presence having spread itself whisperingly around, there arose at length from the whole company a buzz, or murmer, expressive of disapprobation and surprise--then finally,of terror, of horror, and of disgust.

The figure in question had out-Heroded Herod, and gone beyond the bounds of even the prince's indefinite decorum.

There are chords in the hearts of the most reckless which cannot be touched without emotion. Even with the utterly lost, to whom life and death are equally jests, there are matters of which no jests can be made.

"Who dares?" the Prince Prospero demanded hoarsely of the courtiers who stood near him--"who dares insult us with this blasphemous mockery? Seize him and unmask him--that we may know....."

Well..... the figure turned out to be Al Lord. And darkness and decay and Sallie Mae, the Red Debtor's Death, held illimitable Dominion over ALL.

Edgar Allan Poe
(A bit rearranged :)

Anonymous said...

This is an important story that truly needs attention from the mainstream media. Thank you for addressing it.

Cryn Johannsen said...

Absolutely. It is quite important, and I hope to be able to collect enough testimonials for an article.

Anonymous said...

I'm writing this in the stateroom. It's about half past nine. She's in her stateroom getting ready. She's made her face chalk white, with black circles under her eyes and red on her lips and cheeks. She's got that red thing on. It's awful looking. It's just one big square of red silk that she wraps around her, but its got no armholes, and her hands look like stumps underneath it when she moves them around. She looks like what came aboard the ship to shoot dice for souls in the Rime of the Ancient Mariner.

I didn't hear the stateroom door open, but she's beside me now while I'm writing. I can feel her.

The moon.