Sometimes when I’m lying in bed at home wishing I had a Valium to put me to sleep, I think up strange questions and force my brain to answer them. Last night, around 11:21pm, I went through the gruelling process of deciding what I’d most (and least) like to be addicted to, if in fact I had to be addicted to something. Here’s a memoir of the thoughts that barreled through my head until the early hours of this morning.
I’ll never understand this one. Anyone who trains themselves to like these anti-euphoric death sticks can’t be all there. Rather than being angry at me for insulting you – because you probably smoke – be impressed with my courage given I just managed to offend roughly 40% of our demographic in the near opening sentence of an article. Sadly, I’m a minority here, but anything that only makes me feel better once I’m addicted to it is conceptually flawed in my books. On top of that, you’re most likely to die smoking cigarettes, so not only will your life be shitty and expensive, but it will likely be dramatically shortened. Saying goodbye to your kids in some husky as fuck, cough-riddled croak is also very unappealing in itself. Put down the fag, son.
I like drinking. I do so very rarely, but I really like it each and every time I do. My love for a cold one made alcohol a very viable option to take out the addiction crown. Cheery, pumped on life and social – where can you go wrong? Then I started thinking about all the alcoholics you come across. First and foremost, they stink. Apparently hygiene is inversely proportional to the number of standard drinks one consumes. On top of that, beer guts are fucked. Then there’s the hangover. No drug on this planet dishes up the same kind of post-comedown pain like alcohol does. I’d also hate to die of liver cancer, mainly because anything with the word cancer in it scares the living daylights out of me.
Ahh, the humble weed. It’s relatively harmless. Heavy users tend to just mull around society, living their days in the most understated of manners. Weed users usually leverage the brilliance of the small cohort of entrepreneurs who’ve become wildly successful under the influence of its haze. This makes 90% of pot smokers feel like they’re destined for greatness. Unfortunately, while you’ll often come across a pot smoker who can think of a brilliant idea, he or she will very rarely get off the couch and go do it. Regardless, it makes them content with their own lives, conjuring up success in their own minds but never really attaining it. This makes weed appealing as the number one spot, given if I’m going to be unsuccessful, I’d at least like to be content with that fact.
Prescription pill junkies freak me out. There’s something intimidating about their ability to convince themselves their addiction is legitimate – a taxable resource that makes the economy spin as it should. They find solace in knowing a doctor is their dealer, regardless of how many times their pill bottle changes hands in transit. They stand on this moral high ground, jittering all over the place while they pop Xanax and snort Klonopin, so upped and downed their rights and lefts reverse while their north and south play tiggy around their mind. I considered this addiction at length, but eventually ruled it out. Many will argue it’s the safest option, jumping on the ‘medically approved’ bandwagon and concluding anything out of a lab is a clear improvement over a bathroom. They’re probably right, but there’s nothing ‘approved’ about upping the recommended daily dose by double, changing the method of ingestion to nasal and adding a dash of whisky after each hit.
Weight loss is the real benefit here. Not eating for days on end means you’ll be rocking a six pack all year round, but once those sly round pills start eating out your internal organs, being aesthetically pleasing becomes the least of your worries. On top of this, ecstasy – at least in my experience – is annoyingly inconsistent in quality. One trip you’re bouncing around like Alice in Wonderland and the next you’re crying in the shower, screaming obscenities at your parents, quitting your job and telling your girlfriend she’s fat.
I like the quirky awkwardness of a meth user mid-bender, scratching their arms while their eyes dart uncontrollably about the room. In the same way, I like watching YouTube compilations of skateboarders impaling themselves on rails: fun from the outside, but not so much in a first-hand light. Meth would have to be the worst pick of the bunch for me. As someone who enjoys a good run at dental hygiene, I’d have to all but give that up, acknowledging the fact I’d grind my teeth down to little stubs in a matter of years. The gums would go next. I’d also have to give up my social life. No one wants to hang around a meth addict for any extended period of time. That shit wears you out.
They say that if you’ve got a good, clean supply of heroin – and it’s administered correctly – it’s one of the safest drugs you can take. That being said, no one has a clean supply of heroin, which is why junkies are always having seizures in the street. Conceptually, vegging out and being completely content with doing nothing but lay on a couch all day is pretty appealing, but it means you’d lose friends faster than a meth user in a pair of Crocs. Whether or not isolation outweighs the fact Lenny Bruce said using dirty harry is like kissing God is anyone’s guess, but I’m not entirely comfortable sticking around to find out. It’s also impossible to hold down a job when you’re using heroin, so money becomes an issue real damn quick. If we’ve all learned one thing from Discovery Channel documentaries, it’s that no money and a heroin addiction means you will start selling yo’ ass fo’ cash.