Drug User

Hi my name’s Friday, and I, like literally billions of people in the world, am a drug user  I’m still using, socially and on my own; my girlfriend funds my habit, because I’m a student, (hoping for a job soon), I do it daily, and I feel bad without it, and yeah, sudden withdrawal is bad, real bad.  Strangely, my drug isn’t illegal, and it’s available in much higher concentrations that come in pill form, I don’t use those.

<sigh> I might as well drop the other shoe now, my drug of choice is Caffiene, yes, I’m an inveterate coffee drinker.  I’m dropping the other shoe here because this is after all a public blog and I don’t really want anyone to think I’m taking drugs as such.

Thing is, I’ve been a caffeine user for a long time now, and I say this, rather than “Coffee Drinker” because I do actually use caffeine.  And we were explaining things about drugs to the kids last night, and it got me thinking again about how I use caffeine.

These days I’m not up without a cup of coffee, made inevitably in a French Press, I don’t do instant any more, and not, without being indelicate, functional, (people over 40 will know what I mean), without that second cup.  It gives the old body a kick start in the morning. It also means that I have to be up and doing two hours before work.  I need that caffeine start, because as a long term user I’m always one under, I need my fix to function.  I am an addict.  The difference between caffeine and hard drugs is that I can , with sufficient provocation and mindfulness, regulate what I’m doing.

Effects

Oh you don’t want to be down the pub with me after six pints of Cola.  It’s great amongst students, but while I can still calm down and get in the car,  in company I am terribly nervous and excited; and the bad thing is that while I am aware of it, I can’t stop it.  I will say the most extraordinary things, (driven by my testing of comedy on my student and ex-student friends), simply because I’m hyped on caffeine.  (This is why I often drink fruit juice at the pub.  I don’t do alcohol at the pub generally because I’m driving.  Drive OR alcohol, never the twain shall meet)

That’s alright I suppose, it’s not too bad, but there are darker place you can go on caffeine.  I have Type 2 Diabetes, so balance in eating and general diet is very important for me, I’ll probably write  another rant sometime about how everyone is an instant expert of Diabetes, they;re not, but not for now.  As I was saying, diet, balance, control over that is happening to my body is very important; caffeine often takes that away, as an appetite suppressant it makes me not want to eat, but since I have a very sweet tooth, I have sweetners in it, which drive hunger.  I should give them up.

That’s now.  Most days I drink tea, because I’m rarely more than half an hour without a drink, after the early morning kick start, because I don’t actually want to be hyped up all day.

One reason is that once I’m like that, highly caffeinated all day,  I fall off the plank I’ve been walking all day and crash when I stop for more than an hour.  Really crash, falling asleep now crash.  It can take a whole day to recover from that.  Finishing my Master’s Dissertation was like that.  Still getting over it.

…and you can’t stop caffeine cold turkey if you’re vulnerable to it.

To show this I have to tell you that my dealer, when I was young, was my Gran.  I’ve been doing Caffeine since I was five.  She had some Camp Coffee with Chicory, and I liked it with a lots of sugar, so, since I was “favoured grandchild”, (don’t get me started in on how psychologically unhealthy that was), I got some every day, three or four times  a day.  As a child who was already very particular about texture, it actually meant that I ate practically nothing, but was completely hyper all the time.  I read a lot, I mean a lot, so I read fast!  Three of four books a day for years, and then out cycling and usual sibling rivalry.

I was also, very volatile.  For another time.

By the time I was eleven I was doing ten cups of Coffee a day.  By the time I was fourteen I was doing 15 to 20; I hadn’t slept at all since I was seven, though I had to rest every night for two or three hours at least.

At fourteen I was in the army cadets, and had been since I was eleven and went to a real army camp for two weeks up at Otterburn.  It was a rare privilege.  At this time I didn’t touch tea, but at this camp there was no coffee at all, as far I recall, at least I wasn’t getting any.  I was going cold turkey whether I like it or not.

At the end of the first week, I woke up on the Saturday, and in my little glowy withdrawal world, I couldn’t see anyone, anyone at all.  I couldn’t hear or see any living thing.  So I got dressed, and went for a look around.  No-one.

I heard a truck, I was in the middle of the road, so I had to dodge out the way pretty quick, as the driverless truck nearly mowed me down.  Scary.  Scary? I was terrified!

I looked around some more, and strange winds grabbed at me and buffeted me around, there was moaning and shouting as if from very far away, but I could see no-one.  I went to get some binoculars, and had to kick a locked door in to look around, but I put them back afterwards, (I lose things easily by just “putting them down” and then I’ve “had them in my hand right here and now it’s lost”).

I got some food from the NAAFI, though I had to dodge pans and stuff that were floating around.  Some landrovers nearly mowed me down, I learned to avoid the road, and in particular seemed to follow me, but I disabled it my taking the keys out, those strange winds whistled through the vehicle and buffeted me again.

…and then, most strange and scary, the winds caught me up and three me down on a bunk and tied me down so I could move.  I can’t even describe how scary that was, so I’m not going to try.

Eventually, because there nothing else to be done, I fell asleep.

When I woke up, there were LOTS of people around, asking very peculiar questions indeed. It seems I had spent the entire previous day hallucinating, hallucinating that all the people were gone.

Hi, my name is Friday.  I’m a caffeine user; but these days, I try to keep it down to a couple of cups in the morning to kick start me, and maybe one in the afternoon if I’m really tired, or on the road.

I know you’re all out there, I see you; and I’m trying to keep it that way.

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