Brent Gardiner Syndrome

Before I wrote this article, I, like all of you, had no idea who Brent Gardiner is. He has, though, done something famous enough to have an entire syndrome named after him. Was he the first to develop the symptoms? Was he the one who discovered it? Is he the alpha vector in the spreading of the syndrome?

Who knows?

I think Brent Gardiner might - after all, there are now hundreds of teenaged American hypochondriacs claiming to have Brent Gardiner Syndrome. Just check their LiveJournals - it's all there.

"Just got back from the doctors. He told my mom that I have BGS, which is some sort of syndrome. It's weird - I have been feeling all down and pissed off with the world for months now, ever since I turned 14, but since I've been slapped with this label, I am beginning to feel that I can beat it. The medication is helping too." - Sour_girl

Or this one:

"It's been five weeks since I found out I have BGS, and in that time I think it's helped me to understand myself. It explains so much. The mood swings, the irritability, the fact that I hate my parents so much, and the fact that I fight with all of my friends. My doctor took me aside and told me that smoking pot might help, but told me not to tell my mother. It's ok though - mom smokes so much pot these days that she's not going to miss a little bit here or there. I hope it does help... I'm going crazy with BGS." - Bonerguy14

I've been doing some research. The symptoms of BGS are really very vague, but they do add up to something strikingly similar to normal teen angst. The depressed state, the urge to wear torn clothing and listen to loud music, the drive to hang out in the mall acting disinterested, all the while desperate to check out what everyone else is doing/wearing/listening to.

It was TVs favourite quack, Dr Phil, who brought BGS out of the shadows and into the hearts and minds of America. Through his ground-breaking work on Oprah, and then into his spinoff sitcom 'Dr Phil', the good doctor has been working his magic on the disaffected youth of the United States.

Dr Phil's answer to BGS, however, has been unpopular to say the least. His breathless exhortations to poor American mothers to sign their BGS-ridden children up to the United States Marine Corp hasn't gone down too well, particularly with the Marines.

Sergeant Michael Hope of the USMC had this to say.

"That Dr Phil is a fucking PUSSY! He doesn't know the first thing about BGS! My father had BGS, and it didn't stop him from earning a decent wage, rounding up vagrants and shipping them over the state line. He was a SICK MAN! SICK! And now Dr Phil wants these pissants with their blue hair and stinking clothes in the CORPS? I've got one thing to say to you, Dr Phil. DROP AND GIVE ME TWENTY, YOU WORTHLESS MAGGOT!!!"

We tried to trace Brent Gardiner to get his side of the story, only to find that the Brent Gardiner for whom the syndrome is named is now a perfectly healthy and happy 23 year old, living in Connecticut and working as a tax accountant.

"I was unhappy as a teenager, yes... and yes, I did do some work with Dr Phil. He used some very experimental techniques in dealing with my syndrome, including trying to make me feel important by naming the syndrome after me."

Dr Phil's new book, "Dealing with the nightmare of Brent Gardiner Syndrome - one man's encouraging story" has been walking off the shelves for the past six weeks, rocketing the publication to the top of the New York Times bestseller list. The book, full to the brim with Dr Phil's 'down home commonsense wisdom', is a lengthy tome, weighing in at a little over four kilograms.

Dr Phil's final recommendation is this:

"Anyone not achieving success in rehabilitating their BGS children, through careful messages and sharing the love, could resort to hitting them with the book. I understand it packs quite a wallop."

What do you think, did we get it right? Comment here...