“The Loneliness of the Addict Activist”: Maia Szalavitz

at The Fix: It’s hard to convey the sense of crisis felt by people using IV drugs and facing AIDS in the early ‘90s: In New York, at least half of needle users were already infected—at least 100,000 people—and there was no treatment, let alone cure or vaccine, in sight. The presence of death was always palpable. As was, for me, a deep frustration that most people in recovery seemed unwilling or unable to do anything about it.While gay men had ACT UP street activism and Gay Men’s Health Crisi … [Read more...]

Sweet Smell of Success

I just watched a commercial for... something involving "4G," not sure what... which showed a man talking to a small group of little children. "Which is better: playing basketball in a huge stadium, or playing basketball in a little driveway?""Stadium!" a little girl answers."Why is that?""Because there's more room for the fans!""Do you have a lot of fans?"She thinks about it and then says, "Yes!""Do you believe in yourself?"Now she looks like this grown man is maybe … [Read more...]

“The Troubling Things I Learned When I Re-Reported Bob Woodward’s Book on John Belushi”: Tanner Colby

in Slate; via Jesse Walker; totally worth your time: ...Of course, John Belushi did do all of those drugs, and there’s little doubt that the drug stories Woodward uses actually happened. But he just goes around piling up these stories with no regard for what is actually relevant. Just to compare and contrast: At one point, Woodward stops the narrative cold to document a single 24-hour coke binge for the better part of eight pages. Nothing much happens in these eight pages except for Belushi g … [Read more...]

“‘I Think My Liver Hurts’: Re-reading Dostoyevsky Sober”

Me at AmCon. … [Read more...]

From “Upper Cut: Highlights of My Hollywood Life,” Carrie White

The time with [her lover] K had turned into three years. In drug years that was a blink. In child years, it was an eternity. … [Read more...]

“Same again?”

Last night I watched Grabbers, an Irish sf/horror/comedy screened at AFI as part of their annual European Union Film Festival. It's a fun little confection with a lot of truly sublime shots of the Irish coast. The basic story: A young, uptight lady Garda comes to a remote isle, where she begins a "you're hideous, I love you" thing with the local ultra-dissipated cop. Meanwhile alien critters are breeding and killing. Their weakness is that they're allergic to alcohol, so the alcoholic cop must … [Read more...]

The human heart is the scariest cabin in the woods

The second terrific horror flick I saw over the weekend is Resolution. Again, the underlying idea is sharp and simple: Michael gets an email containing a video of his estranged best friend Chris, who's now living in the middle of nowhere doing meth and shooting at birds. He decides to make one last attempt to get Chris into rehab. When Chris refuses, Michael shrugs, tasers him, and chains him to the wall of his hideous meth-addict hell-cabin. They're going to stay there for a week, until the … [Read more...]