Spiritual comfort for the bereaved — 80-proof guaranteed

CONFESSIONS OF AN ALCOHOLIC

Alcohol is god’s gift to the inconsolable.

If I may steal from an old joke: When people ask me if I have a drinking problem, I say, “No, I pretty well got it down.”

People who are okay with my hobby, ask me, What do you drink, mainly?

It kind of a seasonal thing with me — rum in the winter, tequila in the spring, gin in the summer, vodka in the fall, and brandy at bedtime whatever the season — and (I saved the best for last) the year-round favorite, Jack Daniels, so smooth, easy on your throat, unlike some whiskeys.

So, aided by the above 80-proof alcoholic beverages, I (please pardon the cliché) drown my sorrows, and I’ve had my share. But the damndest thing, I drown them for that night, but they ain’t dead, the next day they pop back up like bloated bodies in a sea of sorrow.

You can’t kill them. The only way to get rid of them permanently, is to drive them from your mind and the only way to do that is to off yourself, as the saying goes, which I’ve thought about just about every day these past ten months since my wife died. But I decided — with help from a certain person with the spiritually seductive name of Renata de Dios — not to do that.

‘Tis preferable, I concluded, to mellow out and fall into bed drunk, and, as Shakespeare penned, perchance to dream… Dreams of Susan, good ones, I pray, where we live over again parts of our life together. But even the goddamn guilt-ridden dreams I can handle, because when I wake, usually around noon, I shake them off and console myself with the thought that there are only five hours to cocktail hour.

Praise the Lord and pass the bottle.

Here’s to you, Dear Reader!


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