Monday, February 09, 2009


I used to think I had a drinking problem, but I’m starting to doubt that now. Don’t get me wrong: I was drunk a great deal of the time and consumed, daily, amounts of liquor that would send others to the hospital. I was unproductive, slovenly and hopelessly maladjusted. But still, I’m not sure I had a problem.

Now I work almost every day as hard as I can to accomplish as much as possible. I live a tidy life dedicated to improving my lot, attempt to be kind to others while managing my affairs in a responsible fashion. I maintain positive relationships, keep my eye peeled for opportunity and strive to display virtue to all around me. And for almost two years now this attitude has kept me in the exact same oppressive, grinding poverty experienced while drinking.

Two days ago I was faced with a decision: wether to risk seven dollars on an enterprise that could help me bring things around. Seven dollars. I weighed the decision very carefully and examined all it’s possibilities. I applied effort and enginuity into surveying its possibilities and decided to roll the dice. By that time though, hours later, the opportunity was gone.

If I were smart enough to drive a large National bank into failure I would have been compensated with hundreds of millions of times that seven dollars. If I were nakedly aggressive or unscrupulous I would have had thousands of times that seven dollars. Or if I poured myself into a meaningless, socially detrimental occupation I would have had a hundred thousand times that seven dollars. But I am just a worker so I don’t really even have the seven dollars.

When people offered their sympathy for the horrors I used to endure I would glibly reply that all was nothing six or seven martinis couldn’t fix, though sometimes now I think those words may have been profound. The martinis didn’t make anything better, but they made me feel better, and either way two years later I still don’t have the seven bucks to change.


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