An Easter for Dopefiends

Bubbles: Mr. One day man. Wasn’t even that.   
Walon: Stood up, though.
……
Walon: He ain’t anywhere near his bottom. Got to see that bottom coming up at him. Hard, too, cause he’s young, 24. Most people don’t get tired till they’re 35, 40. How old are you?
Bubbles: Young at heart.

Testers are out, and everybody is having run-ins. First, Bubbles recognizes Walon from the NA meeting he attended in “One Arrest.” Johnny, thinking Walon is there to get high, mocks the big man for his hypocracy. But then Bodie arrives and Johnny recognizes him as the boy who put him in the hospital. Johnny shuffles off to find a less-traumatic source for his next blast.

Wallace Falls into Darkness

Poot: Wallace been fucked up. Since they got that stickup boy, you know? Put him on the car like that. Wallace all quiet and shit. Don’t even come out his room some days.

Wallace is arguably the central figure in Episode 6, “The Wire, but he is virtually absent from Episode 7. Before we even see him, we hear about him in a short conversation between Bodie and Poot. From Poot’s description, Wallace’s inability to leave his room sounds like a symptom of depression or PTSD, but the more direct term “fucked up” seems to work well too. His friends are concerned about his absence, although each one is concerned for a different reason. Poot is worried about the well-being of his friend and roommate while Bodie seems to be more suspicious of a perceived weakness.

The God of Bubbles’ Understanding

 

Keep coming back!–NA regulars

Kurt Vonnegut opens his novel Mother Night with some tricky advice: “We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be.” This advice warns against pretense, suggesting that it quickly and imperceptibly creeps into reality. That can be problematic, particularly for people who trade in pretense, like actors or con-artists. But there is another way to look at this process, and it is embodied in the common expression “fake it till you make it.” In this version, pretense is a first step towards the active creation of a new reality. This is probably why Vonnegut uses the phrase “be careful.” There is great power in pretense.