Wednesday, April 23, 2008

I Hate Alcohol

Jo over at Sinus Arrhythmia has a powerful post up about the effects of alcohol. Go check it out. It got me thinking.

I hate alcohol.

I hate that it takes control away from those who choose to drink it.

I hate that it has become socially acceptable to self-medicate with it.

I hate that it makes people lose their inhibitions and do things that they never would have done otherwise, go places they never would have gone otherwise, and let people do things to them that will scar them for the rest of their lives.

I hate that everyone assumes that if they only drink in moderation it will not affect them.

I hate that they don't realize that it will affect them. Can't they see that ninety percent of alcoholics started by "drinking in moderation".

I hate that so many of these people never realized that they were no longer drinking in moderation until they ruined their lives, or until they ruined somebody else's life.

I hate that you think that you are only drinking in moderation and that everything will be okay.

I hate that those who make the well-thought-out and wise decision to stay away from alcohol are ridiculed and scorned by those who don't understand that life can be even more fun, relationships more rewarding, and intelligence better fostered without the false promises that alcohol offers.

I hate that it has cost us as a society untold billions and trillions in lost wages, and productivity and lives.

I hate that it has cost untold millions of lost relationships and lost innocence.

I hate that patients come in to my Emergency Room on a daily basis because they are so drunk that they passed out in the street again, or because they have ulcers or seizures or jaundice or hypertension or infections or depression or malnutrition or cancer or heart failure caused by their inability to stop drinking.

I hate that patients come in to my Emergency Room because they were driving home to their families and singing along to the radio when out of nowhere somebody locked in the trance of alcohol runs into their car.

I hate that I have to be in the room when the doctor declares them dead.

I hate that wives and even husbands come in to my Emergency Room because they have been abused by spouses who have been drinking again.

I hate that children come in to my Emergency Room because they have been abused by parents who have been drinking again.

I hate that there are wives and husbands and children that don't even know that they have somewhere to turn when their loved ones have been drinking again.

I hate that the nurses and medics that surround me every day and see these same things still go out like idiots and get drunk at parties and become the same people that they complain about all day.

I hate that miracle drugs get pulled off the market because of side effects that are experienced by a few, but alcohol not only remains available, not only remains legal, not only remains easy to obtain, but also remains encouraged and even sensualized by society.

I hate that so-called scientists who want to find reasons to continue enjoying their drinking habits participate in shoddy and unprofessional "research" to come up with any possible silver lining that is the storm of alcohol.

I hate that most of the people who will read this post will be trying to come up with reasons why I am wrong and why alcohol isn't that bad.

I hope that someday we will be able to be honest as a society and let go of the crutch that is alcohol.

I hope that someday we will embrace life and learn to love it as it comes to us, without the mind-deadening effects of alcohol, without the body-rotting diseases that come along for the ride, and without the fear and pain and embarrassment that follow behind.

I pray that maybe one person who reads this post will stop long enough to truly ponder what I am saying and give up alcohol for a better life.

If alcohol were a prescription drug, no doctor would ever prescribe it because whatever positive effects it may have are drastically outweighed by the endless list of negative side effects, and even if a doctor wanted to prescribe it, they wouldn't because they would get sued until they had nothing left to give up.

So why do we continue to prescribe it to ourselves?

57 comments:

Carolyn said...

Well said.

Teresa said...

I hate that so-called scientists who want to find reasons to continue enjoying their drinking habits participate in shoddy and unprofessional "research" to come up with any possible silver lining that is the storm of alcohol.


Amen. How can anyone possibly believe that the miniscule potential benefit from alcohol could even remotely compete with the benefits of abstaining?

Charles said...

Possibly the most astute observations I've ever read on the destructive effects of humanity's favorite drug.

mojitogirl said...

You should come work in our ER in Key West. Then you'd REALLY hate alcohol.....

Ben said...

Beautiful, man.

You're preaching to the converted here. I'm twenty five and have never been drunk. But all the same, a beautiful post.

The absurdity of alcohol being acceptable to people who would never go near other drugs is too much for me to take sometimes, and I don't know whether to feel pity, or scorn for these hypocrites. What the human race are prepared to accept as okay on account of social condition is really remarkable. It's a tragic indigtment on the entire broken, screwed up species.

Alcohol abuse is complete depravity. Imagine how much better our world would be without it. ...Makes me sad.

pjburgess said...

I hate the fact that people always blame the substance and completely fail to understand that ultimately it's all about the person consuming it.

betterdayz8786 said...

This is a great list of the downsides of alcohol . I almost drank myself to death and/or to prison a couple of years ago , but thankfully I managed to escape from that hopeless existance .

It's very strange how a hard-drug (one that destroies more lives than all of the illegal drugs combined)has become so socially acceptable ... it's almost a rite of passage . My kids will be raised to know that they don't have to drink alcohol , and that actually alcohol is a dangerous hard-drug ... no better than crack or heroin .

Anyways , sorry for the long comment , but this one strikes a nerve . Pjburgess , how is it about the person consuming it when it makes every person act the same ? Alcohol makes everybody do stupid shit , whether you're an alcoholic or not ... that's been proven time and time again .

Jamie said...

Amen

josh hopkinz said...

This is a very "real" list! I am a recovering alcoholic, and have been sober for 50 days! It has been tough for me to stay sober, but I have remained sober, with the help of lists like this one, which remind me of what could or would have been if I continued my out of control drinking!! Thank you!

Braden said...

Congratulations, Josh, on being sober for 50 days. I know that it is a very difficult battle. I see patients all the time (saw one today, in fact) who are struggling with it, but I know that it is worth it. Thanks for stopping by.

Erica said...

Very, very well said. I couldn't agree more with you - it's sad that all of this is so easy to see from our side of the ER doors, but not so much from the outside.
Kudos to you. I enjoy your blog - keep up the good work!

Fireman John said...

i used to love alcohol;enjoyed a long social affair with it. took some time, but eventually what used to turn me on, turned on me.
after 24 years of inner city, paid firefighting, seen my share of alcohol & drug related emergencies. there are plenty of folks who drink safely; it's not the substance, it's the knuckleheads who abuse it.

Curious Student said...

It's nice to know somebody else out there shares some of the feelings that I do... I came from an alcoholic background, and everyone likes to tell me to "get over it" when I happen to voice that I have issues when other people drink... I'm still trying to find a healthier way to think about it, but so far I'm right where you are... so thanks for making me feel better!
acoaramblings.blogspot.com

Braden said...

Fireman John: it IS the substance. Much of the time the knuckleheads don't know they will be abusing it until they are abusing it. And many of them are in denial even then, because the nature of alcohol is addictive and controlling.

Curious Student: Don't try to find a healthier way to think about it. Healthy is considering alcohol for the danger and evil that it truly is.

S said...

I hate alcohol for the damage it has caused my son due to prenatal drinking, he is such a creative, inquisitive child that will never see his full potential and most likely will never be able to live alone due to his permanent brain damage done by prenatal exposure to alcohol.

Dustin Huibregtse said...

Simple, well done.

Thank you, thank you, thank you. I am 19, and I sometimes feel so damn lonely on this matter.

It is nice to see that I am not going insane and that I am not the only one to see and understand the possible truth.

I am so worried for everyone else though...it is like social alienation, I can't help a person even though I know he or she is hurting him or herself. I don't have that option because it is not what society says you should do...all the individuals that drink really just want to drink without someone getting in the way. Is that something close to an addiction? A craving? Pressure?

I fear for my future children that have to grow up in a world where alcohol is involved in so many things...and I pray that they have the courage and the strength to be, sadly, different from the rest and just be damn sober.

ThirdDegreeNurse said...

Damn. That's one of the best posts I've ever read.

Karin, RN said...

WOW. Great list. Cheers to that!
Just kidding.

Thanks for the link. I printed that post.

duckieicecream said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
duckieicecream said...

Thank you. Thank you so much. I had tears in my eyes when I read this. My entire life I've felt alone because I feel this way too. I don't know why I didn't go on Google sooner to find other people like me.. I thought it was impossible.

Thank you. Thank you so much. Now I know I'm not the only one.

Danielle
Age 21
danisunshinegurl@hotmail.com

Erek said...

"I pray that maybe one person who reads this post will stop long enough to truly ponder what I am saying and give up alcohol for a better life."

You can count me as one. Thank you.

Robby said...

This is really good to hear. I'm 19, have never been drunk, and never ever want to. I just moved to college and I feel so alienated already. The fact that my intolerance of alcohol has made it difficult for me to make friends really sickens me. I can't stand even being around it. I don't know what makes me see things so differently from everyone else, but the fact that alcohol is socially acceptable (encouraged, even) just seems so bogus to me.

I have a girlfriend that I love more than anything in the world. She used to drink, but, due to my influence, no longer does. However, I know that the only reason she doesn't is because I don't want her to. The fact that she isn't abstaining because she wants to, but only because of my strong views on the subject, is something that I will never truly get over. The fact that I'm so alone makes it hard to tell if I'm just crazy and oversensitive or not. I certainly feel that way sometimes. Ugh.

It's comforting to know I'm not alone, though. I'm tempted to get a facebook group started or something so us likeminded few can stay in touch. haha

Caleb said...

This is so good to see that there are people that feel the same way about alcohol as I do. Just like some other posts say, I feel so alone when it comes to alcohol. I am only 17 but already everyone in my grade at school seems to drink regularly. I know its probably not as bad as it seems, but a good portion of them do. And the thing that really bothers me isn't really the drinking itself, its why people do it. Why do so many people do it? What is so good about it? People who think they are making the right choice by staying away from things like drugs and smoking don't realize that when they drink they are potentially killing themselves. I was recently in a relationship with someone who drank, not regularly, but she still did, and I would beg her not to, and talk to her for hours about how bad it was. But she still did it. I just couldn't get why she would. She thought it was ok because she was being safe, but there is no safe way to drink. Especially when you are underage. And...thats not rocket science, everyone learns that in school. If you drink you are hurting yourself. Our arguement over alcohol eventually caused our relationship to end. With Robby, thats great that she isn't doing it, but it was the same with me, just her saying she wasn't going to do it because of me would never be enough. You have to want to not do it. Thats the only way to get rid of the temptation. I definetely think someone should get a facebook page started, and get it out there that there are people that hate alcohol. And I had the same problem, I didn't ever know if I was just over-reacting or being controlling when I tried to get her or others to stop, but after reading this, I really think I was doing the right thing by making a stand against this. Thanks for the great post. And thanks to everyone who understands what a problem this is, and tries to stop it.

Kiera said...

F A and too much love.

Valavan said...

Thank you so must for posting this.

Sooo Sweet Design said...

I feel what you are saying, but alcohol has been used for centuries in medicine (of which doctors prescribed)—without it you wouldn't be able to keep that medicine on the shelf. It's a preservative. But cordials and other such remedies started exactly as that—remedies, not to cause dis-ease or illness. It's typically made of natural ingredients and we're all part of this natural world. I can think of things much worse that will do humanity in. For now, people still have the choice of how to live. And I think that is far superior of an issue here. And I live with an alcoholic right now who thinks he can overcome it (yet he's been gone for two days on a binge). There are so many other psychological factors that weigh in to his addictive personality. Anyway... Some people just scan't handle alcohol. But that should not ruin it for those of us who can, and can use it for its natural benefits. Moderation.

Sooo Sweet Design said...

Here's an introductory alchemical and historical article that explains the importance of alcohol in natural (herbal) medicines.

http://www.healthy.net/scr/article.aspx?Id=772

Again, don't get me wrong. I feel what everyone is saying here and I have plenty of exposure to alcoholism in my family and now my boyfriend of 8 years (who was sober and claimed he would be for life for 6 of those years). So I found this blog when I typed in "I hate alcohol" but I also see its benefits. I just wish people who abuse it could recognize that and avoid it. Million reasons for why one won't.

trev7782 said...

Exhaustively thoughtful and touching. Thank you for taking the time to post this. Beautiful!

cwlost said...

I am feeling really bad the last few days. I hate alcohol and I am looked at as a socially ac-ward person. I have to try and stay away from activities that my friends and loved ones go to because so many of them drink. recently I went to an event where my partner and friends all drank more then I felt was necessary for "moderation". While I should have been enjoying it I was trying to figure out how to calm down and to "change", at the same time trying to figure out how the guy who was to drive us home was going to do it while drinking. why did my partner not mind that the driver had 3 or more drinks? I feel so upset, I see my partner drinking more in the last three months then in the last few years. I feel alone and lost. Should i see someone and have them fix me, in order to accept alcohol? I do not know. Thanks for the person who wrote this.

Vampiress said...

i hate the burning sensation

bea said...

Wonderful article!!! If only people could open their eyes and realize alcohol is potentially lethal in any aspect. Well said.

c said...

Only after I found sobriety did I realize how much I hate alcohol and how far it took me away from myself.I'm almost 2 1/2 years sober.I almost died trying to quit without medical attention "thank God for Librium".I remember feeling my blood pressure go crazy,getting serious tremors,flu like symptoms,and nausea ect when I didn't have a drink,I hardly ate anything and from time to time passed blood due to having inflamed kidneys.Sometimes I'd blank out and wake up far from home with no recollection of how I got there.Another time I got a blanket party while stumbling home I came-to in a parking lot bleeding and bruised.I lived that way for 7 years.I don't know what possessed me to check into rehab,when I got there the nurse told me I didn't know the day or time,it was the best drunk decision I ever made.Now 2 1/2 years later clean and sober people who used to know me are amazed even my doctor who thought I may have permanently damaged my heart .I've been and am still surrounded by heavy drinkers neighbors,friends,family even my girl...Its funny even though I have tons of friends I feel lonely a lot of the time.Its tough to maintain during the holidays I turn down drinks and accept the strange looks that come with it,people think your strange when you pass up booze or they assume your the dedicated driver, taking antibiotics,or have a medical disorder other than alcoholism.....anyway sorry if I rambled I needed a vent this article was great....I'll never touch the stuff again...

Sean SuperAwesome said...

I love you. This sums up all of my feelings about alcohol.

Daniel Archer said...

i truly hope to meet people like u all. i feel that now alcohol is used for its effects rather than its taste, and that people with this opinion against alcohol barely fit in with the world.
good luck to u all

Minime said...

I always hated it when other people wanted me to drink..oh a glass will do no harm..take it.

Why won´t you?

And then they were puzzled when I got angry after 10 nos and they still wanted to get me to drinking.

How can you get the benefits of wine without the alcohol?

Cook with it or buy some alcohol free wine.

Braden said...

Even if you are just cooking with it, you are still purchasing it and funding the production of more alcohol. If you want the benefits, buy natural 100% grape juice. It is the grape skins, not the alcohol that have the protective properties.

Millard said...

You hate alcohol do ya? I don't drink, but riddle me this. You are saying that every person who drinks, even in moderation, say 2 beers three times a week, is negatively affected by alcohol. You are saying that "oh, because of alcohol, they don't get to fully experience 'real' life and don't live up to their 'potential'. What high horse have you been sitting on that allows you to judge what is "real" about life, and that allows you to see the purpose of all human life in a way that reveals the full "potential" of others to you. You not only assume that there is a purpose to all human life, but that said purpose is hindered by even the smallest bit of consumption of alcohol.

I used to think drinking was only for people who were fake with themselves, as a way to do things they normally couldn't. Now let me be clear, I personally don't care for those who drink just so they can go do something "crazy" and then spend the next week telling their drinking buddies and anyone else who will listen exactly how they "got drunk and did something crazy". Now on the other hand, I'm having a very hard time understanding how a socially inhibited person, perhaps an extreme introvert, would be negatively affected by a few beers in an attempt to "loosen up". Now what you are going to say is that if they can do it with alcohol they should just be able to do it normally. And I'm going to try to tell you that it just wouldn't be the same. With a few drinks, these people will no longer be feeling fear, and are more free to express themselves. It isn't a permanent solution, or even close. Often, these kinds of people just need to get over this certain hump, a "social activation energy" persay that once conquered allows a normal unhindered relationship. Now you say, "oh, well they will just make a fool of themselves because of the alcohol". And then I will say "forced uncomfortable social contact more often than not does the same thing".

Obviously plenty wrong has come out of alcohol. There's no point in trying to argue that. My mom got a DUI, she doesn't know I know, and when I found out I hated her for it. But alcohol isn't always bad. Would I rather have a society without alcohol then one with? Absolutely. Would I rather have a society whose use of the substance is always controlled and responsible even more? Yes. The only problem is, the latter is just impossible.

I can't give you specifics, but I'm willing to bet a lot of the things in your society and culture have the origins somewhere in drinking. Perhaps the director of one of your favorite movies had his idea for the film during a conversation at his local watering hole. Or maybe whoever invented antifreeze came up with the idea sipping a glass of wine with his or her dinner. And you never know, maybe the scientist who develops a magical all-encompassing "cure for cancer" will have his epiphany after a few drinks. This isn't to say alcohol is the cause of good, but that it doesn't always inhibit it.

Braden said...

Millard, I could rebut all your arguments, but I believe that you did an adequate job of rebutting them.

I'll just point out that a 40something year old coworker of mine just got discharged from the hospital on hospice care with end-stage liver failure from drinking in moderation - or at least what started as drinking in moderation and continued in denial.

magic8ball88 said...

I'm 17 and I already hate alcohol. I've never had a drop of it in my life, but I'm forced to watch students at my high school ruin their lives with it, along with marijuana. Happiness shouldn't come from a substance. I have never had alcohol, I will never have alcohol and I will not surround myself with those who have.

Some-ho said...

YES!!!!!! No one around me feels this way and it's driving me insane. I feel so suffocated. My best friend is slowly starting to become more of an alcohol fiend and there's no one else I can turn to. I hate that society thinks it's okay to go out every weekend and get completely smashed and wipe your memory clean. I hate it. I just want one friend who feels the same way I do. :(

Matthew said...

Nice writing. I am 25 years old and have never drank any alcoholic beverage. I grew up around a family that drinks moderately, but never got into it myself.
I hate it with a passion. All that was written are all good reasons, but I am not quite sure why I hate it.
I made a vow to never be/end up with a woman that drinks. Tonight my girlfriend told me that she wanted to drink for New Years. We have been dating for over 3 years and she knows I hate it and would break up with her if she does it. We were talking about marriage. Until this.
Then I told her if you drink, it is over. She said there are things in my life I want to do. This is my famiy's tradition and gave it up for the past 3 years for me.
That tore me up. I told her it is over.
That happened no more than 20 minutes ago.

Kyle said...

Great post. every word of this is the truth. i know it, because ive been there. Its a nasty volatile drug that has spread like a vicious cancer throughout our world today. After 2 months sober now, i know from the bottom of my heart il never ever touch this shit again. All the best to others who are trying their hardest to wean off of it ;)

christi said...

This is brilliant, flawless truth.

christi said...

This is brilliant, flawless truth.

christi said...

This is brilliant, flawless truth.

Brent said...

Thank you so much for writing this. It's good to know I'm not alone - I'm with you on everything you said. I'm saving this to my favorites and opening it whenever I'm feeling down about my opinion of alcohol and the people who drink it.

curedtc (Aaron) said...

Wow! I have read some views here I completely agree with... I thought I was the only one with a problem with alcohol....

I hate it. I mean, there are many problems in life but alcohol is never the answer.

I am at university and have a very select group of friends as it is, without the added fact I cannot socialise as everything is centred around the drinking culture of the 21st century. I find it abhorrent and wrong.

RainJet said...

I hate alcohol because of the greif it has casued every member of my family. Alcohol and alcoholism has terrorized my family (and the world) for as long as alcohol has been around. I hate alcohol. It cost the entire side of my mothers family greif and to loose their promenance. It cost my great grandfather his life. It cost my father his job. My grandfather would have been head chemist of a corporation if not for alcohol. Alcohol has certainly never brought anything positive into my life. Yes, I have abused alcohol before, but now decided I hate it.

Brandon said...

I agree with you one hundred percent. I hate alcohol with a passion. It is far more dangerous than marijuana. Alcohol causes stupidity,illness,injuries and even death. Everyone knows this, but tries to play it off like nothing dramatic will happen to them. I say screw alcohol. To me, it's just another way for the right wings to not only exploit the U.S., but the world too. I can drive on pot, even though I wouldn't and shouldn't, but stupid mother f---ers always attempt to drive under the influence of alcoholic beverages. Wake-up people, there are better ways of feeling good without all the drama and hangovers that come along with it, not to mention the medical costs. The world is ours, let's take it into our own hands and live life how it should be lived. But I guess all to thier own, "right"?

Kay Benedek said...

I hate that I feel like an outcast for hating alcohol. Even when I don't drink it, alcohol's a problem.

bobblah said...

hi everyone..

i'm so happy to find this post.
this is Exactly where i'm at...

i just did 8 days without any alchohol..
suffered severe withdrawal...;
tremors, Hallucinations, feverish, weak, insomnia, serious nausea.

tonight i went back to it.. - and remembered just how much i hate it...
10 mins feeling like; 'Everything might just be ok'
then the whole parapet disappeared and i was alone again.
just with my "buzz'o'meter' running low...
the whole; 'big, life, thing - was gone'
{and i say 'alone again' but - i wasn't feeling like that before i had that drink}

------------------

I have two alchoholic parents...
one has NPD, one has severe anxiety disorders..

^they are not coming from the same place.
so i think people should differentiate... between the paths that lead us to drink alchohol...

-------------------------------

however, that said...

i think alchohol is pure evil.
it has had a Nightmarish effect on all three of us.
Every night pretty much when i was a kid... there would be rows... people down the end of the street would hear..
and so many things were said, that i'll never forget.
i can't get away from the word evil..

its a poison of the mind as much as body...
{in my book}
i can't say enough against it...

But... my problem is; just how integrated it is into society..
and also subsequently; My mind..
i can't picture myself enjoying 'those' times without it...
i also, can't see myself; 'no longer a part of that scene'...
the thought of being the outsider... even more officially; haunts me.
and currently i don't have the confidence to believe i "will be able to enjoy life more without it.."
i know i will... but, i'm having trouble excepting the idea it's going to have to be different..

and; Thankyou Braden. this post has helped me Alot.

it is such a relief to read this.
REgards.
Jx.

George Clark said...

Hi,

This post is brilliant.

I hate alcohol. Both my parents were alcoholics but because they didn't drink between the hours of mdinight and 4pm the following day it was never seen as a problem.

Every night there was rows and I have always suffered with sleeping difficulties as a result.

I'm a social drinker but am vowing for NY not to ever drink again. My father is now such an alcoholic now that i don't know what hes like when hes not drunk or hung over, waiting for 4pm to come around so he can have another 3 bottles of wine in 5 hours. It disgusts me and he wonders why I never look him in the eye.

I hate alcohol.



Mewan said...

I've written an article on 'Why I hate alcohol' as well on facebook.
https://www.facebook.com/notes/mewan-peter-dalmeida/why-i-hate-the-alcohol-habit/558708234149515

Kris&Kay said...

This choked me up. This is put in to words in an amazing way. Thank you.

Harry Stringer said...

Hey Sweet Design,
Arsenic, cyanide, lead, mercury, snake venom, and uranium are also completely natural. Why don't you go ahead and drink those? No? Not tempted? Stop defending your ignorance and inability to act against social pressures, people like you make life just a little harder for people like me, and for people like you. An inability to enjoy your ridiculous vise and fold to peer pressure does not make me week, or foolish, or wrong. It makes me one of the few people brave enough to face life honestly and without some artificial crutch. Just because 6 billion people do a stupid thing, that doesn't.mean it's not a stupid thing.

grumpydude said...

Here I thought I was alone.

I am trying to get past the Christian angle on drinking.

I have always hated drinking and I have never taken a drink in my 45 years. However, the bible clearly says that drinking--wine--in moderation is fine. That said, we do not live in ancient Palestine where there was no clean, chlorinated tap water or ice cold soda in the fridge. I seriously wonder if Jesus would drink alcohol today knowing what we know about its effects on society and the new types of alcohol.

If Jesus were here and drank today, would it not send a very confusing message considering the changes in the drug usage (including alcohol) scene these days? Hypothetical, but there are a lot of Christians--me included.

sergi martinez said...

IMO, it's just the lack of self-esteem that gets satisfaction from drinking. Through a lifetime of endless lies and justifications one can learn to see oneself as an emotionally fragile wreck that will kneel down and bow to the urge of escaping reality, whenever it reappears. Why do people drink? They do because they got used to see themselves that way: powerless and uncertain about which path to take. And to change that requires some bollocks and a serious self-inquiry. Of course, it's much easier to join the vast numbers of self-deluded souls that claim that there is some pride to be taken in corrupting their dreams and become just another numbed twat. I've drunk for many years and have suffered major loses, embarrassing moments and traumatic events that could have been avoided if I had started questioning my behavior much earlier. I think drinking is ultimately linked with the sense of dignity that we have about ourselves and our capacity to live according to what our heart says, not what society dictates. Mind you, I don't deny the role that alcohol could have had in lubricating the rites of passage of my youth, but those days are gone now. The old foolishness needs to be substituted with dignity and self-confidence if this life has to make any sense at all.