Sunday, March 11, 2007

My life as an addict

If you are of an age with me, then you will remember those horrible, scary anti-drug movies that we were shown in school starting at around 4th grade.

There were slimy pushers chasing people down dark alleys with dripping hypodermic needles. There were hapless ingesters of LSD flinging themselves out of windows thinking they could fly. There were girls who would get into cars with strange men and were never seen or heard from again.

I used to wake up with nightmares from these movies. When i learned that it could all start with sniffing glue i was petrified. I was a glue sniffer. I had taken a bottle of Elmer's glue once and wooshed all the air out into my face. I had then turned and done the same to the girl sitting next to me in art glass where we were making glittery valentine's cards, so she knew about my perversion too. The shame and the fear were overwhelming.

It's easy to laugh about this now, but for a while i truly believed that i was a heroin addict and that it was only a matter of time before the rest of the world found out. When i would somehow be reminded of my addiction my heart would pound and i would run away from wherever i was as fast as possible.

Once i came out of my house and my neighbor's dad, who was restoring a car, had a pot of glue he was using to reattach the convertible top. He saw me hanging around and said something like, "Want a sniff?" He was teasing but...

OH MY GOD! He knew about me! How did that happen? I ran home and hid in my room, waiting for the inevitable. He would come over and tell my parents that i was a heroin addict and i would get into BIG BIG BIGTROUBLE. (Trouble, that starts with T, that rhymes with G that stands for GLUE!)

I was an odd kid. But there was no one whom i could ask about these things and put my fears to rest. I told Em this story once as an example of how a kid can make huge leaps of logic and scare the crap out of themselves worrying.


You won't believe what i did when i learned that you could get rickets from too little sun.

23 comments:

SUEB0B said...

How do you know you aren't STILL a heroin addict, hm??

Toni said...

I use to think you could get pregnant from kissing a boy. Something else I learned from my older sisters!

Holly Capote said...

Meno, the very imagination that tormented you as a child delights us today. Sure, Achilles had a lousy heel, but every wonderful thing he did, he did on that lousy heel. So it goes with all our gifts.

When I was a sixth grader, I sat beside a girl who smeared Elmers on her palm. She'd let it dry, color it, and eat it.

"It's my candy," she whispered.

Oh, the horror, the horror.

Holly Capote said...

Toni, you don't get pregnant from kissing a boy. That's silly. Everybody knows better than that.

You get cooties from kissing a boy. Killa cooties. And then you die. Horribly. In the dark.

patches said...

When I think about those poor kids who grew up in the knowledge that masturbating would make them go blind....

meno said...

suebob, OH MY GOD! You are right. I'm checking into rehab right away. All the cool kids are doing it.

toni, we just love our siblings, don't we?

holly, i used to smear glue on my hand and let it dry too. Several layers in fact. But i never ate it. Ewww. Thank god i've never kissed a boy.

patches, that is a sad sad thought. Remember that cartoon where the kid asks if he can just do it until he needs glasses?

TTQ said...

Once an addict always an addict..sometimes I think too much about taking my medicine(legitamte prescribed and very neccesary) and then I don't or won't take it..and that never works out very well. Ask my husband or my mom..

Lucia said...

This is lovely. Just lovely, you addict, you.

I was tormented by the Stranger Danger films. Some days, it felt that we were all just waiting to put our defense mechanisms in place when Stranger Danger came to town.

Abigail S said...

Sniffing glue? Heck, back in 1st grade, there was a kid in class who ATE glue! It was that clear liquid glue that would come out of the roller at the top. I wonder if they make that anymore...

AC said...

I am older than you apparently...we didn't have anti-drug movies, but horrible deaths-by-drunk-driving movies. Oddly enough, I remember clearly the producers name was Bud Wiser. I didn't get the joke back in the 6th grade, back in the totally dark ages.

The glue we used in school was in those little pots with the popcicle type stick/brush on the lid. That did smell very good but not lickably good.

luckyzmom said...

It is getting harder and harder to find serious bloggers around here!!

I loved to stick my fingers in candle wax over and over letting it build up. Oh, heck, I still do
!

jen said...

Meno. put down the glue, sister.

step away from the glue.

seriously, this was hilarious.

Anonymous said...

Oh, I used to be terrified that teenage boys would throw acid on me then I would be on an acid trip and later I would jump out of the window of a high-rise building like Art Linkletter's daughter did. I thank God every day that my children didn't turn out like me.

liz

Lynn said...

I too used to sniff the Elmers glue...I also loved to put it on my hand and peel it off...over and over and over again. Probably wouldn't have enjoyed peeling the glue off my hand if I hadn't been sniffing it! Oh to have all of those wonderful brain cells back!

meno said...

ttq, i am glad that you were not prescribed glue for your ailment. Think how that would have made you feel.

lucia, i remember him too. *Shudder* So much to worry about.

abigail, i have never seen that glue. But i think you are younger than i and the glue is probably much more powerful than my glue.

ac, oh, i closed my eyes during those movies in driver's ed. Paste was good eats.

luckyzmom, this IS/WAS serious. I was an addict!!! Candle wax is fun to play with too.

jen, it IS funny now, but i lived in terror for a while. *backing away from the glue*

liz, they sure terrorized us with lots of scenarios didn't they?

lynn, ah, who needs those extra brain cells? I'd probably only worry with them.

mrschili said...

I was just stopping by to say that, like Lynn, I didn't sniff the glue, but rather peeled it off my palm. I have a perverted love of peeling my husband's sunburns, too. Weird, I know.

I remember those movies, but I don't remember being afraid like you were. The driver's ed films scared the shit out of me, though, and I'm STILL scared of them. I knew that I would never drive drunk (I'm too afraid of hangovers (and the often-accompanying vomit) to drink that much) but the thought that the guy coming at me might be drunk often makes me consider giving up the keys...

holly said...

paste was my weakness, with that comforting wintergreen smell. I used to pilfer the paste from other kids, so I could inhale it at home. I guess I grew out of it, because I don't do it anymore -could be because I haven't seen paste in years- and as far as I know, I didn't suffer any brain damage. well, not much, anyway.

Sanjay said...

Did not have to worry about drugs or addiction, where and when I grew up, but I believe it is all different now.

I also loved your post about tea. Strangely am not surprised that you like tea.

Mona Buonanotte said...

I did the same glue-sniffing thing with Elmers. There must be a 12-step program somewhere to handle this....

I also like the smell of gas when I fill up my car. I can quit ANY time I want, mind you...I just don't want to....

Holly Capote said...

Hey, Mona, I also like the smell of gas. And cigarettes when they're just lit. And even the smell of a skunk. My Dad likes these same strange smells, which suggests that I'm wired this way.

Of course, one just has to flip a few letters in "wired" to write, "...weird this way."

Ortizzle said...

I used to develop strange paranoias like that from crazy shit they tell you in school with not enough information.

So what did you do when you found out about rickets? I bet it's even funnier. ;-)

meno said...

mrs.chili, vomit is bad, especially my vomit. I get enough of it from the cats. You are younger than i, perhaps they had toned down those movies by the time you were in school. Or else i am too sensitive.

holly, sorry, you can't blame any brain damage on paste, it's the wrong kind. You'll have to think of some other excuse. :)

sanjay, really? none at all? Mmmm, tea. This morning, with the full brunt of my missing hour, tea saved me.

mona, GSA. It's no longer the Gay Straight Alliance, it's Glue Sniffers Anonymous. I like the smell of my cat's breath. Which is not like gasoline.

ortizzle, During the winter, in frigid Virginia, i would open the window in my room and hang my bare arm out in the sun, when there was some. I would sit there like that, one arm out the window and reading a book with the other hand, for as long as i could stand it. Until my mother caught me and screamed (high-pitched voice here) "Are you trying to heat the whole outdoors?"

Mother of Invention said...

I actually never saw that movie...guess I'm too old or we weren't as aware of all thet up here in Canada.

I never liked the smell of glue but I loved that smell of the purple ink that came from freshly dittoed math sheets! (I know, I'm old!)
Love the smell of gas around boats too!