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No Outrunning Alcoholism

Drinking/Drugging Tricks Don't Work

Photo by Nick Rickert on Unsplash

I thought I was smart when I was drinking/drugging.

I knew how to pull off minor scams and stay one step ahead of trouble much of the time.

I thought I could outrun whatever was chasing me.

When it came to lying, I was an expert. I’d lie to you easily. More importantly and dangerously, I lied to myself 24/7.


I told myself I was OK when I knew I wasn’t. I’d tell myself that it was OK to drive even though I was seeing double. I’d tell myself that smoking 4 packs of cigarettes over the course of a long day/night of drinking was OK because I was still young.

And a big scam I played on myself and others was to switch up different circles of drinkers so that I wouldn’t be seen by the same people night after night.

This is a common ploy for drinkers during the social years of drinking before isolated drinking takes hold.

I was out every night getting completely wasted. But if I went to a certain hangout once or twice a week, and run into a few friends there who frequented the place, it would seem like it was “party night” for me. Unbeknownst to them, the next night I was drinking shots and snorting morphine at a small house party with a different group of friends, the night after that I was at a keg party in the woods with some old friends, and the night after that I was blotto at a concert with a date. Charming.

Just don’t become a “regular.” Keep switching it up. Gotta keep that facade going! And if they don’t know, I won’t know. Ha!


A phrase I’ve heard sober alcoholics use, upon reflection, is to say “I had to finish the job.” It refers to the idea of needing to be completely obliterated by night’s end.

Being out and about, and getting really drunk, was the start of the job. Going home and drinking whatever it took to “finish the job” was another way of hiding the worst of my drinking.

It was also essential to feed the beast to that degree. The beast, alcoholism/addiction, wants obliteration. This type of drinking/drugging is like a nightly dose of death.

It’s horrible.

And by switching up groups of people that I drank with, I may have fooled some of them to whatever extent. But, in the end, there was no fooling myself and the beast that lived within.


One of the most important things I’ve learned in sobriety is that the only way out is through.

When it comes to intractable matters, I can only stave off and bargain for so long. And it will cost me.

Once I learned and understood that I have alcoholism, there was no running from that stark fact. No amount of wriggling, dodging, whining, second-guessing, or scamming was going to change that fact.

I used to refer to my little scams as “running game.”

It’s embarrassing to realize how immature I remained for so long. Being drunk and high throughout life will stunt one’s growth. I’m living proof of that.

There were a ton of growing pains I had to face when I put down the drink and the drugs. I got a lot of help. I still get a lot of help, but life is much easier the longer I’m away from those dark days.

The only way out is through. Deal with it. Face it. Wrestle with it. Complain about it. Accept it. But don’t run from it, whatever the next truth I have to face may be.

That’s helped me get to a point of long-term sobriety. But just like everyone else on this planet, I only have today. No plans to drink today, so I feel that I’m in good stead.

No scams. No running game on others, or more importantly, myself.

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