Saturday, May 05, 2007

I'll have the burrito and a side of meth...

Well, I have made another trip across the heartland to visit my children (don’t worry, I will have a post up soon explaining why I am perhaps the worst father in America) and the thing that really hit me is the impact that meth is having on our country. I stopped to camp near the town of Marshall, Illinois and ventured into town to grab a bite to eat before crashing for the evening.

As far as I can tell, Marshall is a typical small Midwestern town with an agricultural based economy. The trees that line the main road have yellow ribbons tied around them and there are numerous signs thanking local kids for their service in our armed forces. The local diner had maybe a dozen patrons on one side while there seemed to be some sort of Elks/Oddfellows type meeting going on in the other half of the restaurant. I sat down at the counter and was greeted by a rather large young women (don’t get me started on the obesity problem we have…wait, meth cures obesity…hmmmm) who told me it was her first night and to bear with her. No problem. I immediately noticed the other waitress who was on break and sat totaling her checks a couple of stools down from me. She bore all the signs of meth addiction; the lesions, nubby teeth, a jaw seemingly working on 4 packs of Big League Chew, and of course the saucer eyes. I pegged her for a tweaker immediately and tried to enjoy the craptacular salad that I had been served.

Eventually, the meeting from the other side of the restaurant broke for the evening and all these 50, 60 and 70-something salt-of-the-earth, Midwestern males stood in line to pay their tabs. Watching the meth addled waitress attempt to take care of these guys was simultaneously humorous and heart wrenching.

Do not misunderstand me here, I like drugs. I think they can be fantastic and have been known to ingest as many as humanly possible on some occasions, but meth sucks. It is not fun. It is not euphoric. It does not open your mind. It is fucking evil. And it seems to be taking over our country. Sadly upon returning to Mom’s basement I went out to dinner with some friends in our generic wealthy suburban enclave to have another tweaker wait on us. I know the service industry can be brutal, but is meth necessary? How about a nice line of the yeo? Or perhaps a little reefer?

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