Monday, July 11, 2016


I've been unemployed for almost a month. Today I learned that I am once again gainfully employed. That picture is of me having a celebratory glass of Booker's, the most expensive whiskey I've ever bought and probably my new favorite alcoholic beverage.

In that month of not working, though, I learned something horrible about myself. And that's why I'm writing here tonight for the first time since May. It all has to do with PREACHER, so if you haven't read the book or seen the show, there are some spoilers in this piece. You might want to read this another time.

When I was in college I was through with comic books. That might sound funny to those of you in my life today, considering how deep into comics I am now. But when I was a kid Marvel canceled THE TRANSFORMERS, my favorite book then, and I was so pissed that I gave up on the medium. But then I met my buddy, CJ. He put three books into my hand that brought me back. The first was EVIL ERNIE: YOUTH GONE WILD. He also loaned me the first HITMAN story arc. But most importantly he let me borrow PREACHER: UNTIL THE END OF THE WORLD.

That book blew me the fuck away. I was at a low point in my life. I hated everyone and everything. If you knew me back then you wouldn't have wanted to be my friend. In fact I only know four people right now who knew me back then and are still my friends. But PREACHER helped me understand the world a bit more. I learned to love because of PREACHER. It helped me in so many ways I can't mention them all here.

AMC recently adapted the comics to TV, and I love the show. It's not as good, but it's pretty fucking good. Now that I had more time on my hands I decided to reread PREACHER for the thousandth time. It had a much different impact on me.

I've lost my way. I knew I had, but I had no idea how far off the path I'd strayed. For most of my adult life I have lived as a Jesse Custer. Rereading PREACHER this time revealed me to be a Cassidy. Don't worry, I'm not full Cassidy. I'm not hitting on your girlfriend behind your back or beating the shit out of women or letting drugs control my life. I drink a lot more than I should, but I'm not that bad. My mom still drank worse than me before she died.

I used to stand for things. Now I just have snarky comments. I loved, but now my heart is cynical. Those of you who read the comics know about Jesse and Cassidy's discussion about Laurel and Hardy fans vs. Charlie Chaplin fans. Here's the thing, though: judging by later issues I think that Cassidy is a style over content guy despite what he says. I love content in my writing life, but in my regular life . . . fucking hell. I think my style has overcome my content.

Rereading PREACHER shocked me. I've never read it like this before, with this interpretation. I have compromised all of my old thoughts about the world.

So that's changing. I'm going back to my roots. I'm welcoming love back into my life. I'm standing for things. I'm trying to be one of the good guys because there are way too many of the bad.

I got fired. What did I do that first day? I chopped up about seven Vicodins and drank a shit-ton of whiskey. I did so many of them because I have a high tolerance for opiods. I underestimated them and for about four hours of dizziness I had to keep reminding myself to breathe. When I came out of it, and I don't mean to compare me to this horrible scene, but I felt like Tulip waking up after being stuffed with so much Valium and vodka by Cassidy. When I reread PREACHER, I knew exactly what she meant by telling Cassidy that she was no longer his drugged up slut; that she was HER.

It took me a while to admit it, and when I did I gave myself the weekend to finish up wallowing in my misery. The end was last night. Today is the new me, better than the old me. I used to be so certain of myself, and then I hit about 10-15 years of fucking up. Doubt crept in. Depression ruled my mind.

No more. I know who I am again. It's good to be back, pardners. Let's see what we can do with this crazy ol' world of ours.

No comments:

Post a Comment