The Creative Cafe
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The Creative Cafe

Drug of Choice

Photo by Charlotte Harrison (

The temptation is there. The drug of choice: a quart of vodka.

Vodka is all I can think of today. If it’s not there I get someone to take me to get it. Preferably the liquor store near Cubs where I used to work, where they won’t card me. My papers proving my expired license are missing.

I can feel the liquor in my chest as it soothes and heats my throat. And then, mind fucking numbness.

I used to be a courtesy clerk at the grocery store. I used to greet old women as I walked around the store armed with nothing but a price scanner, a box cutter and a walkie-talkie.

‘Grocery to register nine.’

Fuck. It’s the CSM calling me up front and there’s no way I’m going. Not today, I think. I’ve forgot my pack of gum and my bottle of Aquafina is really filled with the good stuff. They’d smell it all over.

‘Grocery to register nine.’

“Shut the fuck up.”

Only I’m asleep or wait, am I awake? I don’t even know any more. Everyday when I wake up at two, I move through the house like a cat burglar. I check to see if anyone’s home, then search for a bottle. It’s always somewhere in the house. Last week it was in a cabinet above the fridge. Today I’ll check my dad’s dresser drawers.

Just wait one sec. It’s my sister calling. I should flick it to decline, but I don’t because she’s the only one who will give me a ride to the store. I think she knows how much I drink but I could be wrong. I pick up.


“Hey, where you at?”

“At home, why?”

“Mom’s been calling you from work.”

“She has?”

“Yeah, why don’t you pick up the house phone?”

“Oh sorry. Tell mom I’m sorry.”

“You gonna make it to work today? You gonna beg for your job back?”

“Wasn’t thinking of it, but okay…yeah.”

“Today’s the day!” My sister says.

Yeah, this is the day all right. The day I get real fucked up. Green Eyes is coming by and she has scored some cash so we gonna go out and get some liquor.

Oh shit this is crazy.

“Are you there?” My sister asks.

“Yeah, yeah,” I shake myself from the stupor. I feel dizzy. Where’s my shoes? There they are.

“Well, okay then. I’ll let you do what you do.” My sister says, finally hanging up.

Yeah, I’ll do what I’ll do. No one cares about me. My brother told me last week that I embarrass him, when I told him off on Facebook. He blocked me. I’m alone.

Wait, you love me. Don’t you? The bottle is laying next to me beside the bed. I go to grab it, when I forget that I took out my box cutter last night and it stabs me brilliantly in the left thigh.

“Aww fuck! Fuck, fuck, fuck! Shit! Who opened this?”

Oh yeah, it was me. Last night, after my ex called. I got to playing with it. I wonder how the bitch got up the nerve to call me and then start calling me all sorts of names.


The blade went straight through my jeans. The box cutter. This will leave a small scar. No doubt.



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