Sunday, December 14, 2014

Top Five

Every once in a while, I have to see something like Chris Rock's Top Five to be reminded that, as much as life can suck right now, it can suck a lot more.  You can have friends who only pay lip service to your needs unless your needs clash with their wants.  People who only remember you when you're successful.  You can chase after the wrong love and never find the right one.  And, the worst, you can be an addict.

It's the portrayal of both alcohol and drug addiction here that makes me scratch my head.  I did, once, try to get treated for alcoholism.  But I've never acted like Rock's character, needing a whiff of booze to get through an emotional day, or the reporter, who gets fucked over by her obviously gay boyfriend and has to call her "sponsor."

I realized while watching this movie that it had been about sixty days since I last touched alcohol.  The closest I came to it was beer cheese, I guess, and somehow that's not the same.  I hit some more bumps in the road in the summer, but getting back on the straight and narrow really came down to two factors:  1). Giving in to depression and getting shit-faced because of my Ex ignoring me again wasn't worth it, and 2). if the job I want comes through, I really don't have much of a choice but to be sober, for various reasons.  So I thought, why not get started?  Focus on getting your sleeping sorted out... done.  I might not even need medication for that now.  In fact, I should be asleep RIGHT now, so let's continue this after a few hours.
(A few hours later)

In the movie, in one scene, Rock's character has seemed to hit bottom once again, and does the Walk of Shame through a convenience store. I think most people have done this once in a while.  I mean, I have, that's how I wound up with the beer cheese, but Rock, a recovering alcoholic, comes across the liquor aisle and has that moment of decision... look at this wonderful beer.  He's lost everything, again.  Why not go all the way?

The hesitation that Rock's character displays in taking that drink feels real.  I've just never felt it myself.  I've never felt an overwhelming urge to drink that I couldn't control.  You just do drink, or you don't.  That's why I surprise many people when I'm at a party, or a social event.  If I do let loose, I know I won't know when to stop, so I almost never do it publicly.  I used to have friends who would say, hey, you think you've had enough?  And I could pause and go, oh yeah, I have.  And then just sober up for the rest of the night.  I guess you lose those type of friends when you get older, or people are focused on their own fun so much that they just don't notice.  Not that it's really their responsibility to do so.

I just... it seems alien to me, this overwhelming urge that you can't control.  If it was something I had, I'd be a mess right now, and not contemplating The Move.

Rosario Dawson's character goes through this too.  After finally figuring out her boyfriend is kinda gayish, she has to call her sponsor.  I really don't get that, but actually I guess I do, just not for drinking or doing drugs, which I haven't outside of pot.  When I lost my job in July for no really good reason except downsizing, I needed to and hoped to talk to my Ex, but he couldn't be bothered to talk on the phone.  I needed somebody to tell me that I was worth something and it wasn't the end of my life.  Ex could barely tap out platitudes between his retail gig and snogging with his new fling.  He just "didn't have time," although he had time to tell me WHY he didn't have time, just not time to instead be a calming presence on the phone.

In contrast, X had no problem calling me, although his chat wasn't all that great.  But it helped.  Sad to think the one person I never wanted to trust again was there for me, and the one person I always trusted sight unseen was too busy with... whatever.

So I guess I understand getting the whole calling a sponsor thing, but I don't get the looking wistfully at a bottle of booze.  Or sniffing a years old bottle of Crown Royal.  I guess my real addictions lie elsewhere.  That's what it's difficult for me to give up.  I barely even remembered it had been sixty-ish days until I went to see the movie, and even then I had to do a bit of math to even realize that.

The movie has an open ended might-be-happy-finally ending.  I hope my story does too.

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