This deserves its own post. Saturday afternoon I received a call from my friend Charlie that I didn’t answer because I was in the car with E and I think it is rude to talk on the phone in a car when somebody else is present. Anyway, he left me a bizarre voice mail that said he was looking for somebody to hang out with that night, but I wasn’t supposed to tell anybody that he called. I was confused and alarmed by the tone of his voice so I went ahead and called him back.
As it turns out he was driving down Interstate 35 when he answered. He was clearly DRUNK and was speaking gibberish- it was like nothing I had ever heard. I asked him what he was doing and how much he had been drinking and he got defensive and wanted to know why I assumed he was drinking. I pointed out to him that he was calling me sunshine and he only does that when he was drunk – he said that he had only consumed 3 drinks. Lies.
I begged him to pull over – that I would head out immediately to come get him no matter where he was (I think he was about an hour away at the time.) He argued with me over and over that he was not drunk, he was fine to be driving, but I knew better.
He ended up hanging up on me out of frustration, but promised he would call me when he got home. I debated calling the police but I was not sure where he was and I don’t know anything about his car other than it is a black mustang. The thought of the potential danger to himself and others made me cry.
He never called.
I tried his cell repeatedly and finally called his roommate to see if he made it home. He had thank God.
According to the story he told his roommate he was heading off for the three hour trip to spend time with his family and decided to stop off at a liquor store about an hour in to the drive. He bought a fifth of Wild Turkey 101 and drank it in the car. He drank an entire fifth.
He doesn’t remember driving home, and was saying phrases like “go ahead and play a nine hole round of golf in my stomach if you would like, I really won’t mind” and “If they come looking for me tell them I’m here – you know, if the cops want to talk to me about anything.” He threw up on himself on their couch and then tried to continue along with the ‘conversation’ as if nothing happened. His roommate found an ear of corn still attached to the stalk (pulled from a field on the side of the road no doubt) and some fireworks – Charlie had no idea where they came from.
How in the world does one allow themselves to get that fucked up? I like to drink, and thought that sometimes I had drank too much, but I never have gotten to the point where I don’t remember the last few hours.
What it comes down to is that he is trying to kill himself. He was diagnosed with HIV about four years ago and he doesn’t want to live with the burden anymore. What sucks for those of us that love him is that he is responding very well to his treatment – his numbers have gotten very good in the last year. He also has issues dealing with the fact that he is gay. I have decided that I will not sit back and watch somebody that I care about die.
My core group of friends is hiring a professional and we are having an intervention to let him know if he doesn’t change his actions that he will be on his own. This is not the first time he has done this to me, I bailed him out of jail just 3 months ago for a DUI. He was already on probation for a road rage incident where he ran a man into a ditch on the side of the road a few months earlier.
Charlie is such a nice guy when he is not drinking. He has a childlike side to him that makes me want to take care of him and shelter him. He works very hard at his job and is as generous as it gets, but he is endangering so many innocent people with his reckless behavior.
I will let you know how it goes.What a fun life I lead.
Thanks for listening.