Saturday, December 13, 2008

3- A superiority complex cripples the intelligent drunk

Here Doc and I are back to discussing how he refuses to take his drinking problem seriously. I am saying in this video how my father would always deny that he had a drinking problem and would abuse us for saying he did. His superiority complex kept him from admitting he had any serious faults. He was arrogant. He acted like if you had money you did not have to concede any flaws. His lack of humility made it impossible to have a civilized discussion with him. Our discussions would always turn into big fights, which we would sometimes engage in out of desperation or self defense as his superiority complex made him very bossy and controlling. He knew best. The last communication I had with him before he was found dead was a great big sneer. Sneer at the way I was living my life, my poor choices in men, etc. etc.
But my father had quit drinking for the most part, although he was in serious trouble with the law at the time of his death for a drunk driving charge. He had crossed the yellow line to pass a car and hit a car headon coming toward him he apparently was so drunk he did not see. In the presence of the cops, he tried to open another beer twice! They were waiting for the ambulance, the tow truck, etc. One of the passengers in the other car got his leg broken. Otherwise the 4 people involved in the wreck, including my dad, seemed to be 'okay,' although I believe that the terrible blow he suffered from the steering wheel nearly impaling his chest affected his heart, causing his death 9 months later. Both cars were totalled. He was driving a practically new Cadillac de Seville (hard top convertible)a beautiful car he had paid cash for.
Doc has still not got humble enough to shut his drinking down! Sober up. He has never sobered up in the 3 years I have known him. I have never had the chance to connect to a guy before as intelligent as well as talented as he is. I don't think there is anything he could not have succeeded doing if he had set his mind to it. He showed talent as a musician and artist in his younger years as well as sales. His acting abilities made him a super salesman, so he got so he would work only when he had to, basically because he hated sales. But he was never encouraged to go into the arts which is probably what is at the seat of his drinking problem. He 'wasted' many years doing something he hated doing. He loves the arts, but as far as I can see the german lutheran community he grew up in was very controlling. It is as though they were pulling his strings all his early years and he is still drinking to 'show them' he cannot be bossed. What a destructive way to rebell.
I keep trying to get through to Doc through all the stubbornness he has developed about throwing his life away if he chooses to do so. Making something of himself was actualliy what he was taught to do, only there were only a few acceptable ways to do that. For a phenomennally gifted man this was almost a death sentence, but I got the same kind of pressure from my dad to abandon any foolish notions about making a living as a writer, playwright, etc, and had to fight him constantly over my bad choices and impractical ideas. A lot about ranching bored him to death, but he could drink, which he would not have been able to do and succeed had he pursued the profession of law in college which is what he set out to do. He was going to have to be too disciplined even to get through the course. Ranching was about the only work he could still do whilst seriously trying to drink himself to death. At forty he was almost finished, and then he rallied enough to quit drinking for the most part.
I don't know if Doc will ever rally at 71 to quit drinking. But he is slowly departing this life through his alcoholism. I am still exploring his capacities to think and communicate despite his drinking, but it is a difficult frustrating task at times. I suppose one of these days it will be either good-bye Doc or good-bye Gerry. We can't keep on like this too many more years. We are an addicted nation.

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