My name is Paul, and I am an addict. It has been eighty-six days since my last donut. I haven’t had an ounce of pastry since my wife found me on Christmas morning unconscious, lying face down in an empty box of Krispy Kreme Donuts. She said my eyes were glazed over, and a greasy, toothless smile stretched ear to ear.

According to my Apple Watch, this is my 264th step in an addiction program. That makes me number third for the world record: only President Biden’s son Hunter and actor Robert Downey Jr. stand in my way from the title.

It all started back in the ’70s. Due to a horrible fall the summer before High School, I limped off the bus on my first day, dragging my right leg like Frankenstein. Even though my mom was the only person in the room, she has always denied pushing me out the window. I was verbally abused and punched so often during that year I felt like I was married to Johnny Depp.

My only two friends in school never bathed, wore leather skirts, rode fire-breathing dragons, and guarded some stone bridge in the forest. My date for the prom that year was a goat with a large bell around her neck, and she wouldn’t even give me a good night kiss. She was my last date for a decade.

Then I was introduced to a higher calling. I found a joint in the school parking lot and smoked it until it burned my manicured fingernails. The next day, I bought an ounce of Columbian Red. At the end of the month, my father, a financial manager for a large East Coast Company, stormed into my bedroom with the phone bill screaming: “Who in the hell is Pablo Escobar?”

I answered, “Uh, he’s an entrepreneur, man.”

My Father was instantly intrigued. He replied, “Go on.”

“Yea, he’s huge in the inner-city and on Wall Street. He creates lots of jobs and continuous cash flow to build a huge international economy”, I confidently stated.

“What’s his business?” My father asked.

“My friend Pablo is an importer and exporter of a proprietary nasal decongestant that instantly increases your well-being. You just can’t get enough of his product. The demand is huge, it changes your life forever.”

My dad, always looking for a financial angle, asked, “Is he interested in having investors?”

“Heck yea, he’s looking to grow the business,” I answered. “The potential for your portfolio Dad is huge.”

“For tax purposes” my father lowered his voice, “does he work in cash?”

“DEFINITELY DUDE,” I retorted in a stoner voice. “We are cash based, screw the IRS man.”

My father’s smile grew, “Yeah, screw the IRS”.

That was just the beginning. In high school, I read Arnold Schwarzenegger’s book: Education of a Bodybuilder and instantly dedicated my life to winning the coveted Mr. Olympia title. Thirty years later, I declared bankruptcy due to an addiction to protein powder and closet filled with X-large hand-fitted satin thongs.

I gave my heart to Jesus and ended up in Bible College, where the University asked me to leave due to the unsubstantiated rumor I was raising people from the dead and healing venereal diseases for cash.

On a bookshelf, I saw the cover of Life Magazine depicting Sir Edmund Hillary’s heroics conquering Mt. Everest, which inspired me to climb mountains all over the world.

It goes on and on. . .

The journey of addiction never ends; you substitute the eternal craving with hopefully something bad ass.



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