Thursday, 1 August 2013

AFTERMATH: People Who Seek Out Damage

The above song is so old, it's virtually in Sanskrit.

Anyway, as you may know, the first 22 instalments of this blog (Jan to April 2013) are the text of my ebook, 'How To Become A Crack Addict', which you can buy on amazon, if you're that way inclined.  From that point on, the blog is just the daily reflections of yours untruly, Benjamin of Turnham Green.  Here is today's fodder for your nosebag...


When I was using, I found myself especially compelled to do so in the presence of the most damaged people I knew, who also used.  It was a kind of deal.  I guess there's something Newtonian about it...if you begin from a point of particular depth, the momentum of that first rush can seem to propel you faster, higher, further.  But, unlike pure physics, there's a moral overhang and, when the comedown begins, the fall is harder and more bruising, with an extra dose of remorse thrown in, as a reminder that there's no such thing as a free launch.

I have always been addicted to damage, because it's virtuous to hang with the down-and-outs, even to be one, in a spirit of solidarity.  Damage, once identified, can function as a very good reason to fail, and make failure a living form of poetry, for one or more players.

Me and so-and-so would often chat about the damage done, being done, and yet to come.  It's a narrowing narrative, like a river that gets thinner the nearer it gets to the sea.  Yesterday yielded up the reasons for today's mishaps, and today we're forging the gorge of tomorrow's tortures.  It's really quite wonderful, the poetry of falling short - like a slow strangle, you barely notice your breathing is impaired.

Sucking on a smashed Martel bottle behind St Saviour's, I can remember that all-consuming sense of rapture as the crack'n'bicarbe slinked into the sponginess of my lungs, alongside me a ginger-bearded gnome called Lenny, and a vague young guy with stubble and crash-helmet hair.  I came off the bottle, held in the vapours, Lenny grinned, and set one up for himself.  As he was doing so, a lady came out from the back of the church, but, in a spirit of compassion and social inclusion, hardly bothered at what we were obviously doing.  She and Lenny seemed to know each other.

Then Lenny asked me if I could lend him a fiver, cos he got his money tomorrow, and we could meet at Spike and Suzie's, when he'd give it me back.  I told him I didn't have it, but, in his garbled way, he insisted.  I told him no, and made my way down the road to a safer haven where I could score in peace.  As luck would have it, Darrell appeared from his front-door, and shooed Lenny away.  Lenny was obviously lower down the chain, and scampered gingerly away.

Darrell invited me in, and we rang someone that he had to go and meet.  I lay on his floor, still coming down, for two hours, until he returned, saying he'd been arrested, but, as if by magic, coughed up a phlegm-clad wrap, which we shared with the Antiques Roadshow on.

Seems in their world damage devalues.

That is all I have to say today.

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