The number of times I’ve fooled around with marijuana in the aftermath of major life setbacks could fill up a really boring and really short chapbook involving one-bedroom apartments and ramblers with grills perpetually out front, basically scenes from college in the Midwest.
But the number of times (once) that I tried fooling around with coke, now that’s a horse of a different color.
It was summer 2007, I’d broken up with my long-term girlfriend (mutual), and then I’d found out she was sleeping with another man (point, girl). It wasn’t so much her that I wanted, but it was in being told that I couldn’t have what I wanted that really upset me. And “what I wanted” at that particular moment in time meant not seeing mental pictures of her naked torso rubbing up against his erect President Nixon—those kinds of black-and-white flashing images from Muholland Drive or whatever that serve as the icing on the cake of rejection.
So anyway, it was July 3, I was at the bar downtown, and long story short, I cornered the bartender who everyone told me sold coke. I’ve never been good with the fancy synonyms for this drug. What, blow? Who fucking cares. Mom didn’t let me get the Chris Rock special. And I still haven’t seen the Wire. Anway, this vocabularly limitation may have also been why the bartender looked at me kinda spooky-like from behind his wire rim glasses. That—and I was throwing around my $12.50 with a lot more weight than it really deserved in that arena.
So my pursuit of a Las Vegas Nose Job (is that better?) fell off like a Herman Cain alibi in a sex story case. But, I did rediscover something in that post-break-up period that gave me the twinkle-toes-satisfying medication that no chemical can produce: sex with a strange woman.
Okay, “strange” is debatable. She was my good friend’s (recent) ex. AND, it actually produced an array of public relations’ nightmares for my personal brand that I’d like to forget—including a public haranguing from friends outside a suburban Chili’s and then a vigorous public taunting of physical endangerment from said erstwhile friend outside the World’s Only Corn Palace in Mitchell, SD.
But, the sex was, well, it was sex. It worked. There were no Voltaire moments of self-enlightenment in the sack. No one cried or spoke about beauty. But we both got off, and the morale of the story is, after spending a night naked and sweaty with a woman, I no longer wanted to spend and “do” and fight through and recover from what coke or other designer drug I could’ve purchased from that scary labrat for $12.50.
I’m reminded in this moment of an old monk-like saying about our vulnerabilities as humans being like crater-sized holes in our hearts, and sex/drugs being the mounds of dirt we shovel in. Is this right? Does anyone care? I don’t know. But the point is, the Mexican Drug Wars are awful right now. So why not nurse your feeble sense of self-worth back to health with a more sustainable and violence-free kind of exchange: good old-fashioned bareback. Unless you’re not into that kind of thing. It’s totally your call.
– Dunstan McGill (time is currently 2:47 a.m., which reveals the effectiveness of my anti-drug….)