A Conversation with the Urge

A Conversation with the Urge


ME: Who’s there?

VOICE: It’s me, your urge.

ME: Oh hi, Urge. C’mon in.

*Urge comes in and takes of its boots*

ME: What brings you to this part of the neighborhood?

URGE: You’re stressed. I could sense it. So, I came to help you out.

ME: Oh yeah? How so?

URGE: I have a sales pitch for you.

ME: Oh great-

URGE: Hear me out now. I can help you relax, feel good, uninhibited, socialable and just an all-around better person.

ME: I’m listening. How can you do that?

URGE: All you have to do is come have a drink.

ME: But I’m trying to live up to a standard. And not using is part of that standard.

URGE: Just one drink man. It’s no big deal.

ME: That’s what you said last time.

URGE: It’ll be different this time. What are you? Some sort of kid? You can’t handle a single drink without going overboard? Of course you’re not. You’re completely in control of it. You can do it. I know you can. You’ve changed. Just do it to prove that you can do it. This way you’ll almost be like, helping your sobriety, you know what I mean?

ME: The best way to help my sobriety would be to not drink in the first place. Don’t you agree? I mean, you say I’ve changed, isn’t the whole reason I’ve been able to change because I’ve quit using? Wouldn’t having a drink be going backwards?

URGE: No it wouldn’t be going backwards because you’re not like that anymore. Don’t you see that? Don’t you realize that when someone changes for the better, that it’s written in stone, and there is no possible way they can go back?

ME: Don’t you realize that it’s very possible to go back, and every time I decide to use again, I put everything I’ve worked for at risk?

URGE: Oh that’s wishy-wash man. It’s true for them, but it’s not true for you. You’re a tough guy, you can handle it. You know you can. You’re not like the rest. You’re special.

ME: Well, I am a pretty tough dude.

URGE: Exactly! And a couple beers, just to relax, is no big deal. Not for a guy like you. I bet if you went out tonight you’d be the life of the party. There’s a pretty bartender just waiting for your attention.

ME: But what if I end up having more than I planned.

URGE: You won’t. One drink. One single drink.

ME: Ummm, I don’t know dude.

URGE: You can do it. And this will prove that you can.

ME: Promise?

URGE: I promise.

ME: Alright. I’ll do it. Just let me get my boots.

URGE: Nice! You’re back! Back and ready to have a good time. No more of this struggling bullcrap. No more of this stopping yourself from doing what you want to do. It’s time to let loose for once.

ME: Just one question though.

URGE: Sure ol’ pal. Go ahead.

ME: Well, you said you had a sales pitch right?

URGE: Right.

ME: And that you can offer me relaxation, uninhibitedness, socialness, etc. etc.

URGE: Some of those aren’t actual words, but you betcha. You’ll get those by the barrel full.

ME: OK, but, since you’re giving that to me, what do I have to give to you?

URGE: Uh, whatcha mean friend?

ME: Well for every benefit there’s a cost. So what are the costs here?

URGE: Why don’t you let future-self worry about the costs?

ME: Because that’s not what a responsible adult does.

URGE: Did I mention that it’ll relax you?

ME: You did. But you forgot to mention that in order to relax for a few minutes I’ll have to either give up or put at risk my health, family, looks, reputation, money, time, productivity, goals, safety, sensibility, standards, belief in myself-

*urge checks its watch*

ME: -and I’ll end up feeling shame, guilt, hung-over, sick, tired, embarrassment and just generally like a bag-o-crap. Not to mention, everything you’re offering to me I can get without putting all those good things at risk, and without feeling shame, guilt, hung-over, sick, tired and embarrassed.

URGE: You don’t know that though. You don’t know that it’ll happen this time.

ME: But I know it happened almost every other time. And if I was a betting man, I would bet on the team that has a 99% chance of winning. Wouldn’t you?

URGE: Dude, that’s not you. That’s your inhibitions talking. You know what will fix that right?

ME: That’s OK! My inhibitions are a good thing. My inhibition comes from good judgement! What you want is for me to lose my good judgement!

URGE: That’s not what I sa-

ME: And you know what! It’s OK that I’m a lil’ stressed out right now. It’s OK that I’m not the most socialable person in the world at all times. It’s OK that I’m not the best person. I don’t need to be. I’m an adult, and I can handle it. I’m a real human being feeling real human feelings. And running from those emotions is childish response. It’s the definition of maladaptive.

URGE: Dude, you only live once. Live in the moment why don’t cha.

ME: You don’t want me to live in the moment. You want me to run from the moment.

*urge is stumped*

URGE: So uh… how’s Derek?

ME: Why?

URGE: Just wondering. You haven’t seen him in a while, eh? You should give ‘em a call. See if he wants to hang out. I’m sure he could use a friend.

ME: No I haven’t seen him for a while. But I hear he’s not doing too well.

URGE: Why not?

ME: Because he gives into his urges.

URGE: Boy is there egg on my face.

ME: What are you still doing here?

URGE: Sheesh. Well I can see when I’m not wanted. I’m leaving now.

ME: Yeah. And don’t forget your boots.

*Urge puts on his boots and heads out the door.*

ME: And tell Derek I said “Hi!”

URGE: Will do! I’ll be back.

ME: I know. I’ll be ready!


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