'My heart was racing and it was taking a while for the car to heat up. Panting, I could see my breath hang frozen in the air just before me. I really should get a jacket but that would take away from what I could spend on booze, pills, and smokes. I hadn't had a drink in a while and I noticed although the car was now warm my hands were still shaking. I felt a bit sick. I decided to visit the nearest liquor store when my phone began buzzing, it was on the passenger seat where I had left it. I never got any messages from people I actually wanted to hear from, those days were long gone. Instead I would have dozens of missed calls from bill collectors, and a few voicemails politley asking I return the call to discuss an “Important matter” It was my dealer though. He was the only person I willingly spoke to. I hated how I sounded on the phone sober so I decided to hold off on calling him back until I could secure a bottle. I always went to the same liquor store, it was convieniently located near my job, so I was able to be in and out, still making it back from my break on time. The cashier used to smile everytime I came in, jeering, and making obnoxious comments about various booze induced exploits of his. Lately he just seemed concerned. It was a pretty seamless transaction now. I placed the booze on the counter, paid, and then left. Next stop was a burger joint, I loved it. There was no free food at work so I was starving. The needy bastard probably caught on to the fact I was pilfering his stupid donuts. I hope he has a coronary. I got a large soda and a burger, medium-fucking rare. This spot wasn't all that great, but it was always empty, so I could get my order while having enough time to sit down and actually enjoy it. While they were preparing my burger I took my soda to the car, poured some out, then made up the difference in scotch. Black label. It was an insult to the scotch, but I wanted to eat inside. The place was right next to a strip club so on ocassion I could ogle a dancer and enjoy a burger. That coupled with the buzz from my soda is what got me through most days. Today I was the only one there. My order was done so I took it over to my favorite booth and started unwrapping the burger eagerly. It was like unwrapping the gift you knew you were getting. Just counting down the moments until you were able to tear its cover, and reveal the object you obsessed over countless times in your head. I slid the unraveled burger to the side, brought my soda just before me, stabbed the top with a straw, and slurpped it with all the energy I had left. I gulped it until it was about half way down and just leaned back. Light as a feather. My head tilted forward and a smile crossed my face. Calmly yet aimlessly I brought my burger up to my mouth and savored my first bite. I dont think it would have tasted as good if I didnt have some Scotch to wash it down with. I mechanically repeated lifting and biting the thing until it was finished, only taking breaks to slurp the remainder of my soda. Unfortunately a wave of lonliness washed over me. Looking down I saw the empty wrapper, the empty cup, and just stared. Beautiful moments are so short lived when you have no one to share them with. The rapture of the moment is almost like a snapshot of everything you dont have. Serentity and peace for a few seconds to show you how foul and broken you walk around at any given time. It wasnt the first time this happened. I doubt it would be the last. Never in my life had I dealt with these feelings healthily. So I did what usually worked. I slammed my head into the counter with terminal velocity. Smashing my head out of the sludge of empty feelings, and lonely thoughts. I was startled for a moment, a bit dazed, and in more pain than I had anticipated. I think I saw the cashier take a break from reading his book to see where the noise came from, but I left before being able to really be sure of anything. I walked slowly to my car and closed my eyes. For a while I found I was enjoying the cold air, my lack of layers wasnt such a problem anymore. As I continued to walk towards my car I began to wonder why it was so easy to ignore people. I dont think I ever really felt like a part of something, or accepted by anyone. The only thing that ever had me questioning my feelings or place in life was the come up or hangover of a lovely drug. I made my way to my car, opened it, started the engine, and just sat there. I still had enough time before the end of my break so I drank a bit more and scaveneged my car for some chewing gum, luckily I found enough to justify another few swigs. I would usually do that, just have a bite, and drink enough so that the rest of my shift went by like nothing. I found it was something like a fast forward button for my life. Getting back to work was always so depressing. What brought me back? I never found a good reason, but I had a place to live and food to eat so I guess thats as good a reason as any. I sat staring through the windshield. People started showing up in droves, I thought to myself and wondered if this always happened. I wondered if they were only empty when I was there, and if maybe they were a better establishment than I had ever given them credit for. There was a quick movement in my periphery snapping me out of the thought. I reversed and started the trek back to work. I call it a trek but I always found myself getting back to work noticablely faster than I had left it. I made my way to the office parking lot and still had some time before I needed to clock in. I looked at my phone and opened the list of alerts, just the same bill collectors. I checked through all my voicemail, yup just bill collectors. Time to give my dealer a call.