Thanksgivings Drunk and Sober

I’ve been surly, stoned and sober on the our nation’s holiday of gratitude. And for me, sober definitely seems to work out better.

In 2007, on the day before Thanksgiving, when I was not even a year sober, I was waiting to go see my family for the first time since I’d been sticking drugs up my nose and alcohol down my throat. I was at LAX and that year, 62 million people traveled through its runways. At the time, there were Marines guarding the terminals with drug-sniffing dogs barking at tourists.

I don’t like the term “going back home” since I’m a firm believer that wherever you pay rent is your home. Mine was the city of West Hollywood at the time and there I was in the middle of the LAX. Stone cold sober. Going back to the Central Time Zone to see my father. My mother. My brother and two sisters. Chain-smoking cigarettes outside Terminal 1 before boarding my flight while taxis whizzed by. 

Here’s how Thanksgiving used to go: my mom would cook dinner and my dad would keep changing the music in the background because he couldn’t decide what Moby song to play. The soothing sounds of four-star hotel elevator music apparently calms down workaholic surgeons even in their homes. This was the mid-2000’s. Bush was President, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie had just met, Katrina was a household name and I wanted to get stoned, drunk, loaded and out of my mind. I wanted to smoke pot in my Explorer and chug vodka while driving to a movie alone. I was afraid of what my family thought of me even though I was really just a constant variable in their lives. I did my own thing and they did theirs. Read More…

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