White Rabbit Syndrome: new therapy approaches

01 The White Rabbit

Gert described White Rabbit Syndrome in a 2014 post. Otherwise known as Kaninchenschmerz, it’s a condition in which the sufferer repeatedly dreams he/she is running along the bank of a fast-flowing river of books saying, Oh dear oh dear I shall be  late. It’s believed to reflect a fear that the number of books that must be read is growing exponentially even as the sufferer reads with increasing desperation.

But science is coming to the rescue. Gert has learned that there are three research projects going on as we speak:

In Dr Lucretius Baboon’s study subjects are required to make slow, steady swimming motions with arms and feet while reading.

Professor Rort K. Bugbear is investigating a meditation technique in which subjects envisage themselves being carried along blissfully in a river of books.

A PhD student, Harold Biggarby, hypotheses that eating a book every day will enlist the autonomic nervous system and the ventrolateral hypothalamus to produce a steady internal state in which the need to consume books by reading will disappear.

Subjects are being sought for all three trials. Surely book bloggers, who contribute to this plague by reviewing and recommending books, have a duty to take part?

Image: http://www.gallery.oldbookart.com/main.php?g2_itemId=28022

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11 thoughts on “White Rabbit Syndrome: new therapy approaches

    1. That brings back memories of the taste of book-pages. I’m wondering how long Biggarby hypotheses you would have to keep up the book-a-day habit. It may turn out to be like one of those miracle cures where you have to eat your body weight in the medication to get the result.

  1. Talking of cabbages and Kings (we were, weren’t we?) I’ve always thought that the invention of printed books made of cabbage leaves was a concept before its time: bibliophiles who wouldn’t eat their greens or vegetarians who were reluctant readers could at the same time consume (literally and figuratively) tomes at a stroke.

    I believe Dr Theophilus Wildebeest of the University of Wurms wrote a monograph on this in 1870: have you perchance read this, Gurt — perhaps before swallowing his paper and theory?

  2. I believe he’s referenced in Harold Biggarby’s work but has been rather sniffed at by more aristocratic scholars for his approval of the plebeian cabbage leaf. Aristocratic children certainly wouldn’t eat cabbage books -perhaps that accounts for all the chinless wonders.

    1. Ah yes, posh children only consume posh cabbage, as noted in Doctor Savoyard-Sauerkraut’s magisterial study Lebensmittel des Koeniges published in a limited edition for the crowned heads of Europe in 1843 (when there were more crowned heads than now and therefore several copies existing to this day in national library collections).

      You can read the text on Project Gutenberg if you don’t mind the atrocious English translation by John Ruskin (no, not that one, the other, his namesake).

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