Monday, August 11, 2008

On Playing The Lottery

When I was back home in Milwaukee I met up with three of my best friends for a four day camping trip in the North Woods. We talked about countless subjects, but the one that kept coming up was all the dead kids we knew. Three more died in the past six months that I didn't even know about until this weekend.

The Sergeant, a two tour Iraq war infantry veteran, died in his bunk while stateside. The Army never did tell his family what happened to him, but we know that he ended up overdosing. See, he got straightened out when he joined the Army, but Iraq fucked up his head and he got back into using. He was 23 years old.

The Delivery Guy was a real troublemaker, but a good kid nonetheless. He had been a pizza guy ever since I had known him, he fucking loved it. He probably loved it so much since he sold dope on his routes. Well, unfortunately for him, he owed some people some money and they shot him twice in the face when he stopped to get out on one of his routes. He was 22 years old.

The Hookup was one of my former dope dealers, not really a savory character but someone I would call a friend. They didn't know a lot of the details on it other than they thought he OD'd. He was 26 years old.

It made me think, strangely enough, of playing the lottery. Now I don't play the lottery for money, necessarily, I have played for other...more important things. People play the lottery, for example, when they have children. Any number of things can come from childbirth, and the beauty of the process is that it cannot be rigged (for the most part). You could end up giving birth to the cure for cancer or giving birth to a shooting spree way down the line, you can never tell. One such lottery which I have played is the drug abuse lottery. I managed to come out on top of the experience ie came out with my life, health and most of my sanity. These three, and the few others who have gone on, were not so lucky.

I feel like I almost owe them something but I could never put my foot down on just what it was so I carry their memories with me wherever I go. When I see some of the kids I used to run with, these days, they look at me with disgust. Disgusted that I sold out, betrayed them and gave up the life. It confuses me because I look at them and am disgusted that they are still stuck in the same old mud. They didn't learn from all the ones who died or got locked up or shot.

I'd never change what I did, I won the lottery...I'm still breathing. I would not be the same person I was today without these stories. I know you probably get sick of hearing all of them, but I can't write about sex when I'm not getting laid so come out here and fuck me if you don't like it. I don't know, it seems like everything I have making me happy right now is finally working but I always need something to bother me and keep me down. It just helps that I have a lot of dangerous and self destructive friends to give me shit to be upset about. Its alright though, I'm doing fine, even though they are gone I'm doing ok...besides I just won the fucking lottery.

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