Ain’t that a bitch? I get home from working all day to find out that I’m the only one in the world who didn’t know Hunter S. Thompson had killed himself.

I can’t say that I’m sad. Disappointed, but not sad. As far as I’m concerned, it takes quite a bit of courage to blow your brains out, and I can’t really find anything wrong with a man wanting control over when and where he dies. That much, I can respect.

At least he left behind quite the legacy..I hadn’t planned on drinking any time soon, but I guess tomorrow will be a Fear & Loathing drinkathon with Mr. Depp. It’s only sweeter that Hunter S. seemed to hate the movie.

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Betty Ford, be my Valentine

February 14, 2005

Ah, Valentine’s Day. I assume most people are out with their loved ones tonight, going to dinner or spending the evening together, enjoying each other’s company, laughing jovially and making sweet, sweet love into the early morning hours.

I too spend the evening with my lover — a special evening. I’d just like to say that I’m proud that my loved one and I have been together for over 6 years now (fuck you, it’s got 92 calories), and we’re still going strong.

I love you, Beer. I just want you to know that. I hope you got the flowers I left you near the fridge. I want to make tonight special, beer. I want to make it the time of our lives. I’ll be waiting for you, love. Follow the rose pedals up the stairs…something special awaits you.

-Drew

Update: Who is the dumb piece of shit that invented 7 ounce bottles? Tonight, in a fit of rage, I stormed into Publix and grabbed the closest six pack with a decent price, which happened to be Budweiser. 4 dollars! Wow, what a steal, I thought. Then I got home and realized I had baby bottles of beer sitting in front of me. And I wanted to kill someone. I fucking hate you, whoever you are. Know that.

Flip a coin

February 7, 2005

Yeah, I write a lot about my crappy job. So what?

Ezra and I were on what they call a “trash run” and he had just finished telling me about a job he once had and how one of the guys he worked with was carrying a large piece of plywood on his shoulders while on top of a roof. He told me how the wind suddenly blew very hard and the man went flying off of the roof, landing on the nails and pieces of wood below.
“Was he ok?” I asked.
“Naw, he was fucked up.”

Ezra always had sad stories to tell, like the one about how he worked on a chicken farm in Alabama. He said it was an easy job. He’d go around every 3 hours making sure the chicks were in the correct climate and he’d sit back down and play his Play Station. He knew the farmers and so he’d drink with them, some times all day. He’d do drugs with them too.
“That was an easy job, but I was more interested in sitting around doing drugs and gettin’ tattoos,” he told me.
“They were good guys. They’d give me money whenever I asked for it. They’d just hand it to me.”
“My boss was huge, must have been 6 foot 5, red hair. He was a big fucker. Shot him self over some stupid girl. That was after his brother died in a car wreck. He was making $8,000 a week. Who’d want to go do something like that?”
“I guess money doesn’t mean much to some people,” I told him.
He explained how all 3 brothers in the family ended up dying, two by suicide, and how he lost his job to his next employers because of his drug habits.

“Nope, he wasn’t OK,” Ezra finished. I just nodded.
We each grabbed a hold of a side of the trash can and lifted it over into the dumpster, pushing the disgusting contents out of the way. It was busy and there were only two of us working, but the trash had to be emptied and the only people to do it were us, the laborers.
“Jesus,” I muttered after dumping a particularly disgusting load onto the heap above us.
That’s what you do on trash runs — you pick up trash and curse to each other about how much you hate your job.
“Least we ain’t like my brother, man. Least we get our paychecks. He works for some no good piece of shit. Last week he went in for his paycheck and the guy told him he couldn’t give it to him because he had to pay his power bill for his house. He told him he had kids, and he had to pay the power bill,” Ezra said. “That’s bullshit.”
“Yeah,” I said.
“Man, this must be the worst job I’ve ever had. I swear I’m fixing to have a nervous break down.”
“This is the place to have it,” I told him.
He laughed.

Last trashcan. It was heavy and full of a liquid slop so incredibly foul I could do it no justice in trying to describe it. It was a mixture of blood from the meats, some cheese, dressings, various vegetables, grease, and just plain old trash. It must have weighed over a hundred pounds — the usual. We both struggled with it. The dumpster was getting full because of all of the cans we emptied, but we were down to that last one…so we went for it. We both managed to lift it up to the dumpster’s edge. We tried to pour it in, but its contents sat on top of all of the other trash and bags. If we pulled the can back all of the trash would splash out onto the pavement, and we couldn’t push the can forward any more because it was lodged in the muck of the dumpster.

“I don’t think this is going to work,” I told Ezra.
“Aw, we’ll make it work.”
He put a foot on a plastic milk crate nearby and tried to pull the rest of the garbage can over the edge as I held it in place. The trash bag ballooned up with the chunks and liquids like a pimple waiting to pop. It hung over the lip of the dumpster for a moment and then exploded on us. An avalanche of a most disgusting filth rained down upon us both, sliding down our “Leatherface” aprons and down our pants.
“Fuck!” I shouted (I’m a man of few words).
Ezra looked shocked. He made a sound which I assumed was one of disgust, but then he made it again. And again. He stared into the air for a second and then he made a coarse gagging sound. He continued this for some time; staring, dry heaving, staring, dry heaving. He kept the vomit down in the end, and his dignity with it, I suppose. I waited for him to throw up and for the manager to yell at him, but it never happened.
“Thank god for aprons, eh?”
He didn’t respond. He tried to laugh, but continued to choke. I stood soaking wet with the cold wind.

The manager came out to see if we were done. Once he saw we were through, he rushed us back inside. “Make sure you get a broom and clean up that mess out there,” he told Ezra.
“Yes, sir,”
We returned to a room full of bus tubs and dishes piled on the floor, people yelling at us for help with garbage crusting on our arms and legs. Absolute fucking chaos. Nothing but stress, and all over some stupid fucking restaurant and minimum wage. It’s funny what people will do for a job.

The lots some people get in life break my heart. Some people were just born into it all. And I think some people do have legitimate excuses for having wound up going down the “wrong road…” using drugs, for instance, like I talked about in my previous post. It’s all relative. Like they say, walk a mile in someone’s shoes…Well, whatever. Some people just get shitty lives. But Ezra is a good guy, and he shouldn’t have to do shit work like being a cheap laborer for a career. The only answer I can give to someone like him is the one that is posted on the walls at work: if the job wasn’t hard, there would be someone else to do it. Be thankful that you have it… and that’s it.

C’est la vie.

I heard the word laudanum used somewhere today and I couldn’t quite place where I had heard it before, so I went and looked it up. I ended up learning about a very interesting concoction and some very interesting people associated with it.

Laudanum was a mixture of alcohol, sugar, and most importantly, opium. It was used in the 18th century and through the Victorian era, “prescribed” to anybody who wanted it or needed it. It was basically Victorian Tylenol with a very enjoyable kick.

It got me into such a state of indifference that I no longer took the least interest in anything, and did nothing all day but loll on the sofa reading novels, falling asleep every now and then, and drinking tea. Occasionally I would take a walk or drive, but not often. Even my music I no longer took much interest in, and would play only when the mood seized me, but felt it too much of a bother to practice. I would get up about ten in the morning, and make a pretence of sewing; a pretty pretence, it took me four months to knit a stocking!
-Anonymous
The Journal of Mental Sciences January 1889

Lower class workers would binge drink laudanum after work for their melancholia, upper class women would drink it to achieve the pale look of the day (I wish that would become popular again), babies were fed the drug until their overdose… and even Lewis Caroll of Alice in Wonderland fame had a laudanum habit. Cheshire Cat, indeed. In fact, many authors did – Poe, Dickens, Shelley, to name a few.

Alas, human vices, however horrible one might imagine them to be, contain the proof (were it only in their infinite expansion) of man’s longing for the infinite; but it is a longing that often takes the wrong route. It is my belief that the reason behind all culpable excesses lies in this depravation of the sense of the infinite.
Baudelaire

Definitely a piece of history I had no idea about.

Something about addiction and despair attracts me. That’s not to say I like despair or applaud addiction, I just understand them and how they can rule someone’s life. They go hand in hand. Despair leads to addiction, addiction to despair — for whatever particular reasons. It’s a vicious cycle, but that is life. That’s what attracts me to people who don’t take life seriously and who have no qualms with slowly killing themselves by bottle, cigarette, or needle. If you can function and continue on without pulling your friends and loved ones down the garbage chute with you, then do it. If you are happy, do it. Some suicides just take a long time. We are a flash in the pan, dust in the wind, whatever you want to call it… and the fact that many of us live our lives in unhappiness makes me sick. Do what you have to do and then die, that’s all I know. Melancholia be damned.

That’s why I agree with [this article] (excuse the website) and the doctor who wrote it. The article is mostly about self medication and how the people who are doing it shouldn’t necessarily be looked at as junkies or addicts. Most of it refers to opiates, but I think it can be looked at in more than one way.

He too is clean and sober but the recovery that the professor radiates is not available to him. Not because he wouldn’t do anything to have it, but because abstinence is not the cure for his affliction. Treatment has helped him find ways to cope that have enabled him finally to get the correctional people out of his life. But I see in him deep sorrow and loss, and I despise a piece of what I do. This man remains unwell and doubly afflicted because though he knows exactly how to get well, the means are simply not available to him.

Very intriguing, very true.