TITLE: My Addiction 

AUTHOR Catherine Semerjian 

EMAIL hsemerjian@home.com 

DISCLAIMER I own nothing, don't sue 



CONTENT: mild language 


SUMMARY Musings by Sam


Leo would kill me if he found out. Josh and CJ would help. Toby would probably just laugh. Unfortunately, this problem of mine is starting to get a little out of hand. I thought I had it licked, but in recent weeks, it's come back with a vengeance. That unstatiable, constant need. I might as well call it what it is, an addiction.

It started when I was a kid. Back in the day, my dad was pretty bad for it too. My mom tried to get him to slow down, but once he got started, there was no stopping him. I was always a curious little kid and seeing the reaction IT got from him, I resolved that I had to try it, just once. So one morning, when dad left some on the coffee table, I scampered over and tried it. My first reaction was something I'd never forget. That unbelievable jolt, the rush of pure... Words do not do it justice.

Call me weak, but one try was all it took. Pretty soon, I was taking some wherever and whenever I could get it. My friends didn't understand, so I had to hang out with an older, more experienced crew. We would go out for hours on end. My mother was disappointed and my dad was surprised that I'd started so young, but by now there was nothing they could do.

By the time Princeton came around, life was sweet. No more concerned parents and everyone around me was just as into it as me, maybe even more. There was no fear of being caught during one of my crazy binges, all I had to do to keep the peace was share. That was all right, in Princeton, sharing was a good thing. We helped each other get through shortages and, just like high school, we'd go out in groups for it. Teachers might have suspected something, but nobody ever spoke up. If only they had.

Things got really bad at one point. I couldn't go three hours without it. My hands would start shaking, I'd lose my temper over anything and I got terrible headaches. Couldn't sleep or eat, it was horrible. Like I said, friends helped me get through those rough patches and I don't think I could have survived it without them.

Once I started working, I managed to cut down. You obviously weren't allowed to do that kind of thing in the courtroom. So it was back to basics. I only used in the early morning and in the middle of the night, when I had to work late. On a few occasions, I forgot my own address and wound up staying the night in my office. That's why there's always a spare suit there, just in case things get to that point again.

For a while, I was all right. Then my new friends tried to get me off the stuff for good. They said that I was only harming myself. What did they know? They weren't the ones who'd lived with this problem since childhood. So what did they try? Pretty much everything, but the absolute worst was when they tried to ease me off it. I've got to give them credit; they were persistent. But none of their substitutes had the same potency.

By the time I went to work for the White House, I was down to a rate that didn't seem abnormal. People thought I was a little weird, but nothing out of the ordinary. That was fine with me, because I am a little weird.

I never realized that my new job would be so overwhelming. The late nights, rough meetings, crouchy coworkers, you can guess what happened. Like a long lost friend, my craving came back and I was helpless to deny it. That was all right though; it got me through the truly hideous days. People think that my actions are normal, they don't realize just how heavily I'm under the influence of it. Only Cathy has any real inclination, but even she doesn't know the depth of my addiction.

Now Josh is starting to notice that something's wrong, but I can't stop it. I wish I could get some help, but there's nothing anybody can do.

Coffee is just too damned good.





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