Star Spangled Highway After college, I moved back in with my parents for the summer while I saved money to travel to Europe. I was looking forward to being a wanderer, to have no responsibilities or obligations beyond making the next train. But first I needed money.
My parents had moved a couple of times while I was in school, settling in Orange County, California, so rather than moving back in to my childhood home and hanging out with all my old friends, I was in a completely different and foreign place with no friends but my family there. I was very lonely.
For July 4th, my parents were away--I think on a cruise--and I had the house to myself. Without any friends to party with, I somehow decided that the thing to do would be something I'd never done before--I would drink and entire liter of Wild Turkey 101 on my own. The fact that this was my solution to 24 hours on my own should give you some indication as to what state of mind I was in at the time.
So I got up at a reasonable time, took a shower, and had my first drink of Wild Turkey 101 on the rocks in the shower.
I was apparently successful at drinking the entire bottle that day.
I got up for work the next day, because I had that type of job that requires you to come in on July 5th. At the time I was working at a failing carpet company, just down the street from Disneyland, about 25 minutes away via the highway. My hangover was the most memorable part of the drinking experience.
I pulled over to the side of the highway, opened the door, and threw up. I threw up everything I'd ever had to eat, and everything I've ever thought about eating. I threw up all I'd had to drink, and I knew I had to get to work to get paid to get out of that city and get out of my parents spare bedroom and get back to living my own life rather than no life at all.
I threw up and knew that I couldn't survive another holiday like this. And then I was empty and ready to go.