Read This Before Going On...

26 January, 2021

Reflections on Depression and Alcohol Abuse Part 3: I Know Why The Caged Bird Drinks

 Reflections on Depression and Alcohol Abuse Part 3: 

I Know Why The Caged Bird Drinks

The day has ended, you leave work... and you have 2 options:

1: Go home

2: Go to the bar

But we are living in a "work from home" environment and the bars are closed... Or at least limited in open seats. So... here you are, sitting at home all day, working on your laptop, answering Skype calls and having Zoom meetings for 8 hours - or 5 hours if you lie like some of my coworkers - and now the metaphorical whistle blows and you're done for the day!

Only you're not.

You've got 2 kids who just showed up from school and they're grumpy and angry and don't want to do their homework. You have a friend texting you because they hate their job. Your spouse is just as unhappy with their job as you are, and you can't scream into the void that you 'JUST WANT EVERYTHING TO BACK TO NORMAL!!!!!'

So... you go to the kitchen at 5PM and pour a drink. And another. And another. By 5:30, you've got a nice buzz and the bullshit from work seems less bullshit-ish. Your kids' whining about school seems less obnoxious. You're able to take a moment, relax, and say, "Well, at least I'm alive and I made money today."

THIS... is the new American dream.

And Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, and AOC aren't going to magically make this better. You can't legislate happiness folks. You can't legislate morality either... but that's a whole different blog post.

The American dream is now not losing your fucking mind after 8 hours in the "home office" and then changing venues by "going to the kitchen." Jesus, I feel bad for people doing this in an apartment. I would've burned that shit down by now.

So there it is... In glowing technicolor - the life and times of a guy who doesn't want to scream at his kids or spouse so he uses antidepressants and and alcohol to TURN THAT FROWN UPSIDE DOWN!

And I know I'm not alone in this. Fuck, if I was - the term "Happy Hour" wouldn't fucking exist. And Happy Hour has been around longer than I have... 

We all just want to get by... but the system is fucking broken. The new American Model is broken even more than the rest. Because we pray at the altar of Capitalism and the money gods need their sacrifices... So work hard, shut up, and ignore your family. Be so down-trodden that by the end of the day you just want to stare at your phone to escape and drink wine or bourbon or beer to just NOT FEEL... 

Then wake up, down 3 50mg tablets of Zoloft and go on about your day... 

The American. Fucking. Dream...

16 January, 2021

Reflections on Depression and Alcohol Abuse Part 2: What Dreams May Come

Reflections on Depression and Alcohol Abuse Part 2: 
What Dreams May Come

The world is burning, I've spent most of the week sober, and Trump leaves office this week. All in all - I think it's been a good week? 4 days in a row sober. 2 nights in a row not...

I saw the VA doc this week. They tell me I'll live another day. This, I suppose, is good news. I like living. They haven't tried pushing anymore meds on me - so that's good. I am still on my build-up of Sertaline... my last dosage increase will happen on Tuesday. And thank fuck for that. Every time I go up to the next dosage level, my body reacts with 3 days of diarrhea and that... just fucking sucks. On the bright side, however, I am feeling the effects of it.

I've never taken anti-depressants before. I took Welbutrin once to help quit smoking, but that did not end well for me. It caused me to have horrible nightmares, major anxiety, and paranoia. It was, in a word, misery. Which is why I quit smoking cold-turkey this time. Fuck that noise... 

I am pleasantly surprised with how I am reacting to this new one. My dreams have been, more or less, entertaining and less "We're all going to die." - which is huge. They are, however, really vivid dreams. Which is actually really cool. I've had dreams about all sorts of cool stuff over the last week - if this side-effect keeps it up, I'd be okay with it. I love vivid dreams.

When I was a kid, I used to dream all the time. I had the best, most vivid dreams of adventures in great caverns and subterranean worlds. For a long time, I had a reoccurring dream in which a large hole opened up in my town and I was chosen to go down and explore it... I had this dream often. No idea what it means... but I always enjoyed it. 

My dreams were like that for most of my youth... all the way up until around 2000... when started drinking for a living. Well, not a living - but I associate 2000 as the year when drinking became an integral part of my identity. A friend even made a custom action figure of me that came with a small bottle in hand... so... yeah.

The drinking, it seems, causes my dreams to sort of... go away. I just sleep. Or at least I think so. It could be that drinking just causes me to immediately forget my dreams. Which, I guess, could happen. I'm not a shrink or a dream therapist so I don't rightly know. I just know that around 2000 is about the time when I stopped having regular, awesome dreams... and when I started to have more stress, more anger, more... everything. I had a few failed relationships around that time that really took a toll on me psychologically as well.

Then 9/11 happened and then I got sent to Iraq... and when I came home my dreams were no longer awesome in a different way. They straight-up sucked. Death. Fire. Explosions... and, believe it or not, those weren't the worst ones. The worst ones are the dreams where I'm in uniform again and everyone in my unit is shipping out and I can't go. I try to go... but I can't. And I wake up feeling like a failure for the day. I wake up feeling worthless and lacking as a human being. Those are the ones that fuck with you the most.

So I drink. When I drink, as I said above, the dreams go away. Or at least become less memorable?

And now - here I am struggling with cutting down on the alcohol consumption and living with this new reality of once again having good dreams. This is still very early on in the whole process, but I view it as a good thing. I view it as a possible 'return to the life I once led' kind of moment. One where I didn't stay up until 3am because I knew what sleep held for me - but rather going to bed early in the hopes of a fanciful flight of dreaming good dreams... 

I hope.

I hope that's the case. I hope I have good dreams. I hope I can go another 4 nights in row of sobriety. I hope I can dream about colorful adventures in the dream-version of Paris that I hold in my head. There is a large, cobblestone bridge that runs 3 miles across shining waters. It leads to old buildings stacked with food and books. To me, in my mind, it looks like something you'd see in the movie "Inception" and it's a recurring setting in some of my better dreams. Along with a dream-version of where I went to school and met Lady Bourbon... Those are the dreams I hope for. 

More often than not, however, dreams are more adult in nature. And, no, I don't mean sex and drugs. I mean stress. I mean work. I mean anxiety over the fucking pandemic... Those dreams can fuck RIGHT off. They are the bane of my existence and the re-introduction of good dreams into my life has been an amazing thing for my mental wellbeing. 

So... there is my update for now. Hope you are all well. 


10 January, 2021

Reflections on Depression and Alcohol Abuse Part 1

I need to change things. But that's the same shit I've said before. It's the same shit most people above the age of 25 have said countless times as they inch closer to death and see their bodies and their lives move in a direction that, while inevitable, isn't what was wanted.

We all start out invincible in our early adult years. Nothing hurts us. We drink ourselves stupid, sleep 2 hours, and go to work the next morning with water, some Tylenol, and the promise to not drink like that again until next weekend.

As time goes by we start noticing small changes... an extra ache or pain in the knee or ankle. A shoulder that doesn't feel like it used to. We find ourselves asking, "what?" more often simply because we couldn't hear the other person... and then it hits us - we've reached the start of "Middle Aged." The thoughts of death creep in around the edges. You're no longer invincible. You sleep wrong and hurt for 4 days... And we all wake up and say "I need to change." "I need to diet." "I need to correct the path I'm on." "I need to X, Y, and Z." - And you wake up with heartburn or acid reflux wondering, "Is this a heart attack? Am I finally dying?"

And if you haven't hit this point yet - be thankful. If you have hit this point - you have my sympathy.

Now let us add to the mix that I drink. A lot.

Recently I began a personal crusade of sorts to attempt sobriety and make something better of myself. You may remember a similar failed attempt two years ago about wanting to get in shape... also failed. And why is that? Am I lazy? Probably. Am I afraid of failure? Most assuredly.

So - combine those traits, along with an unhealthy predisposition for alcohol abuse and TA DAA! Here we are. Sitting at the edge of my 43rd trip around the sun with an unhealthy amount of weight hanging off my body, a chronic level of dehydration, and probably a list of ailments waiting to happen... and I want to change... again or still. I want something better for myself or my family... but I'll be damned if I know how to do it.

In the last 2 months, I've had a 2-day streak of sobriety. More than once, but still. I can only seem to get about 2 days before the urge to drink creeps in and takes over. I say, "Oh, just one." Then I look down and realize I'm on my 4th and the bottle is almost empty. I am a high-functioning alcoholic with PTSD and depression - and sometimes I really hate that I am aware of this. It'd be better to be blissfully ignorant of this fact, but let's face it, it's pretty obvious. 

And I just want to change... 

Fuck, if I was a religious man, this would be where I break down and pray to Jesus, Buddha, Allah, and Vishnu to step in and make it all better.

If this was a Hallmark movie, I'd drink myself into a coma, wake up and have a heart-to-heart with the doctor/shrink/pastor and come home to a celebration of sobriety at the house with my friends and family... 

But I'm not religious and this isn't hallmark... and if I had friends, they'd be alcoholics too. Instead, I just get to whine on the internet and have long, introspective thoughts while I sit in the house waiting for the kids to go to bed so I can drink again before going to sleep and waking up for another day of the exact. same. fucking. thing.

I did the math... Lady Bourbon and I spent over $3,000 on alcohol in 2020. Granted it WAS 2020 and the drinking was a bit more liberal from March through July... but that still seems to be a lot.

So, yeah. There ya go. My first blog post in a while... the first of any writing I've done since February... I'm calling this "Part 1" because I plan of there being a series of these as I navigate the waters of being in my 40s and trying to not die from drinking myself to death.

I quit smoking overnight. Just put them down and have never looked back... I still want one from time to time, but that's not the same thing. It's easier to quit being at home with no other smokers in or around me... I assume drinking would be the same. But we like to drink. The friendships I DO have locally revolve around gathering and drinking... So, not the best group to go to for sobriety help. My family - HA! They are of the mindset of "Well, just stop." - They do not grasp addiction and mental health as well as you might think. And Lady Bourbon's family thinks that mental health is a dirty word developed by Satan to turn people away from Catholicism... 

I'm not really sure what I'm saying anymore. I've written more than I planned to today and I'm no better off than I was 2 hours and 5 failed starts ago... My kids are currently running wild through the house and I need to go reign them in... they're supposed to be folding laundry.

Farewell for now, internet. See you when I see you.

-Dr. B

19 July, 2020

Surf's up! We're riding the anxiety wave!

I know that I am not alone when it comes to being an anxiety-ridden ball of... something for the last few months, so this isn't something uniquely mine. But hear me out...

The last few months have been like riding a giant wave, in a storm. I'm waiting for it to crash down on top of me, or shoot me out the end into calm, blue seas...... and NEITHER of those are fucking happening.

To help me deal with stress and anxiety, I plan. I plan and make plans and then do backup plans... it's one of my little quirks that, thankfully, Lady Bourbon finds amusing... or tolerable. When COVID hit, I planned food. I planned supplies. I planned on how to keep us all indoors and possibly sane. It worked. It gave me something to do for a while. 

But now... fuck me, man.

Half the country is going on like it's not a thing, the other half is still locked in their homes waiting... and I don't know how to plan for that. My kids are supposed to be going back to school in like, what? 3 weeks? Do I send them? Do I keep them home? Do I burn down the school and make it less of an option?! (please note: I would never actually burn down the school unless we were invaded and the invading army was using it as their base of operations... then I'd light that bitch up.) 

Seriously... I'm at the end of my fucking rope on what to do here. Lady Bourbon and I have stayed up many nights talking about what to do and when we start these conversations, and there are too many variables. My brain just starts going, "eeeeeeeEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE." And I sort of black out for a minute.

Then we have "The country" and all its woes... and there are a lot of fucking woes, my friends. We have civil unrest across the board. We have white supremacy on the rise in many areas. Our "leadership" uses openly hostile words, tactics, and rhetoric against our own people and, deep down, I fear we're heading for something bad. And by "bad" I mean anything from armed conflict to massive economic collapse.
So I plan. I planned food, again. I planned money. I planned protection. I planned how to keep me and mine safe and protect in case of the worst-case scenario. It worked and gave me something to do for a while. 

But now... fuck me, man. 

Half the country is still rioting to one extent or another, the other half is on Facebook complaining about or congratulating the first half. Cops are bagging people in the streets, rioters are breaking stuff and pulling down statues... and the online fights are just as awful and nowhere is safe... meaning there is no online refuge. Everyone is an opinion-having monster with no love for anyone. Lady Bourbon and I have stayed up many nights talking about what to do and when we start these conversations, and there are too many variables. So my brain starts going, "eeeeeeeEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE." And I sort of black out for a minute.

And there is my problem... I can only plan so much. At some point, I run out of things to plan and prepare for and I am left feeling the weight of all that anxiety... and man, it sucks. You've probably seen my posts on Bug Out Bags and the like. That's what I've been doing for the last 2 months. 

I need something to happen or I need it all to go away... I can't keep up this level of anxiety and planning day-in and day-out without some sort of payoff one way or the other. Like I said before, I'm trying to surf this wave. I'm still surfing this wave... I'm still waiting for something bad to happen and all of this planning to be worthwhile... or I'll pop out of that tube and find myself in the clear again.

The only good thing to come out of ALL of this - aside from leaving my miserable job with Debbie - is that I now have wonderfully stocked first aid kits. I can treat anything from a kids' tiny boo-boo all the way up to a 9" gash down your forearm that needs compression bandages and staples.... And as fucking cool as that is, it's still not the same as just being calm and going on about my day. 

I'm beginning to not know how to handle all of this shit. I'm running out of plans to be made... You can't plan for everything and there are WAY too many possibilities out there that could happen. I guess I could enhance my "oh, sweet Jesus, it's the end of days" plan... or my "North Korea just launched an EMP at the Midwest" plan... but then those plans cost a lot of money, man. I'm not ready to turn my garage into a Faraday cage just yet.... 

I'm not really sure what the point of this post was. I think I just needed a distraction and to put some stuff down on "paper" per se.  Maybe I'm hoping someone will comment and give me something to think about and talk... Maybe I should just write more and take my mind off it all. Maybe I need to finish my post apocalyptic novel I started in 2005... It's just that this is all messing with my sense of reality. My sense of how things SHOULD be. Now, I think abut how things COULD become and it bothers me...

Ah well... How are you dealing with this? Bug out bags and spare food? Books and coffee? Smoke and a pancake? 

15 July, 2020

Your friend turns out to be a sexual predator the other day...

The Twitter LGBTQ and Erotica writing community was rocked last night when one of our own made a post proclaiming to the world that they were not in fact a lesbian, but a married, cis-man.

Stopping right there, you could say it was just about a Pen-Name that goes along with the subject matter to sell books is okay.

Sure. No big deal. And, like me, you may have even said "Good for you! Way to come out of your shell and let everyone know!"

But then...

Jesus, but fucking then... This is world we live in.

Look, most of us, if not all, know who I'm talking about. But I'm not going to drop their name here. I don't feel the need, nor the desire. Why? Because it didn't stop at a Pen-Name. Oh, no no no... it went WAY beyond that. And that is where it stopped being cool.

Let us back up.

I use my "Dr. BourbonSex" account as a release. It is a way to hide certain aspects of my life from my friends/family who I know do not feel the same way I do about things. I'm not ashamed of what I like... I just don't want to lose friends and family over it. My Hentai Fetish would literally give my parents a heart attack. My penchant for wearing lace underwear would probably cause both of my brothers and their uber-Christian wives from ever looking at me again... and I'm sure my political ravings, and sordid sexually explicit short-stories over on the ole blog might give the employer some sort of reason to fire me. That would be discriminatory, especially since I've never done it on company property, but still... I digress.

I do NOT use my "Dr. BourbonSex" account as a way to manipulate people, flirt with people who aren't Lady Bourbon, or do anything of the sort. Jesus, I told Lady Bourbon about this account when I made it. We have a very open relationship - Open as in: We tell each other a lot of shit... not Open as in: So, I was swinging at the bar the other day... - That's what makes a marriage a partnership and not a fucking train wreck. I do NOT use this account as a lie, trap, or falsehood. I have, to date, never lied about who I am on here. I will, on occasion, delay posting something for a day or two to prevent outing me IRL... but that's not the fucking point. This account exists with the awareness, and dare I say PERMISSION of Lady Bourbon who shares many of my proclivities and tastes.

And that's where this story starts... with Lady Bourbon.

A while back, in the early days of Dr. Bourbon, MOST, if not all, of my online friends were Erotica authors. It was fun. Ya'll write some sexy shit. My first 20 or so friends are still on a list called "My first friends" and I love them all in their own, individual way. With one exception, now two, I'm still friends with the original 20. Sorcha Rowan among them.

Sorcha was an unrelenting force of sexual innuendo and smutty prose. Nobody here can say that the person known as Sorcha was bad at erotica.... So we laughed, told jokes, etc. Once, Sorcha tried to DM with sexy gifs and talk, I said "knock it the fuck off" and it stopped. Just like that. Became professional almost. Sorcha was a beta reader for me at times. Good suggestions were always made, along with unwanted sexual connotations, but that doesn't bother me because it was never reciprocated on my end. Sorcha was even one of the first guest-posts on my blog with a post about Sapio-Sexuality... loving a person for their brain. I thought it was a good piece.

One night, whilst having dinner at home, Lady Bourbon says "Dude, I need to block Sorcha Rowan on twitter, I think." When I asked why, it turns out that Sorcha "accidentally" sent the wrong gif to Lady Bourbon. - Keep in mind, Sorcha did not KNOW this was Lady Bourbon. This was a non-Bourbon related incident - the gif Sorcha sent was a very explicit, very sexual gif... immediately followed by apologies and whatnot that seemed, at the time, very sincere. Lady Bourbon, under her real name, said "It's cool. No harm, no foul. Not my thing." And that was that...

I confronted Sorcha via my Dr. Bourbon account and said, "please stop hitting on Lady Bourbon, she doesn't go that way." And I meant this as a joke with someone I'd come to know as an internet friend... when the lightbulb finally went off and 2 and 2 were added up to 4 in Sorcha's head, my identity was revealed... To my absolute shock, Sorcha revealed to me that "she" was a "he" named "Bob" and he liked to write Lesbian Fiction and used the name Sorcha to sell and promote his work.

Taken at face value, everything checked out. We became better friends. We talked about bourbon and guns and whatever else. Despite this friendship, Sorcha's RTs were blocked from my feed because, well, let's face it, they were a little too much for everyone.

Lady Bourbon and I thought Sorcha/Bob was a really nice person and never did anything to bother us. In both instances of Sorcha Rowan's unwanted sexual advances, it stopped as soon as we said something and I never gave it much thought... So, you know, cool. Sorcha even wrote erotic fiction about me and Lady Bourbon.

But then I learned more and more about Bob. I learned about his wife and home life. I learned that he kept everything related to Sorcha a secret from his wife. I learned that his wife's lack of shared interests with him and how "Sorcha" was "who he was" on the inside.

( As a man who keeps his inner-most kinks and fetishes out of family talk, I could really say shit about it - even though I disagreed. )

As time passed, Sorcha wrote posts with other people and joint-works... It was my assumption that Sorcha told them that he was actually Bob and things were cool... But apparently I was wrong.

Because then we get the post from last night.

The dime-tour is this: "Hi, my name is Sorcha and I'm actually a married, cis-man. I have been pretending to be a lesbian to write fiction, make money, and engage with online sexual activity with women, under the guise of a being a woman. Even so far as to use the #ourvoices tag."

That's a lot to take in and unpack so to speak.

At first, I was like, "Oh, good for you, Bob. Tell the world that you're a man and do this right."

Then it slowly started to sink in... like watching the defroster work on your window on those cold, wet mornings... one minute, it's all fogged up and then BAM... fucking clear as day.

I was floored.

Consent REQUIRES an informed decision, Bob. What you've just said, what you've just admitted to is disgusting.

The person I'd become quite familiar with over the last 2 years has been engaging in non-consensual online sexual activities. People had talked, flirted, and who knows what else with Sorcha Rowan for who knows how longs with the UNDERSTANDING that it was a lesbian woman... and not a fucking married man preying on them and their vulnerabilities.

The outrage was all over the place. And rightfully so... and I was still trying to wrap my head around the idea that someone with whom I'd had many great conversations about writing, marketing, and story ideas was a fucking asshole trying to pass it off some form of courageous act...

What could've been a learning moment, and moment of growth died a fiery death when he tried to make this about how strong and courageous he was?!  No. This isn't about your struggle, Bob... fuck you.

And in the middle of that thought is when Bob contacted me telling me Sorcha was dead. I wasn't even sure if I should answer him, but I did. I told him that this would our last conversation. I told him I'd be deleting him from social media. I told him to go see to his family and BE BOB, never Sorcha... Then I blocked him on all of my social media accounts.

I'm really pissed off to be honest.

I value the online friends I make SO much because I am, 90% of time, much closer and honest with the online friends than the ones at home... I assume that, to an extent, these people are the same with me.... that when I find out that one of them is like this... one of them has been fucking over his wife and kids to go do this shit online with other people and hurt them AS WELL... is just too fucking much. It occurs to me, and Lady Bourbon, that he sent her that gif on purpose. He was testing the waters... luckily, we're a happily married dream team and don't fuck around on each other...

And now I sit and write this missive... this Farewell to my so-called friend. I don't have many friends, IRL. They all exist online and Bob's bullshit has put the rest of my online friendships into question. If he's capable of this - who else is? Who else is a closet racist or homophobe? Who else is a raging asshole waiting to shit on my 20 minutes of online freedom and happiness?

Jesus, but fucking then...

My fear is that Bob will harm himself or even commit suicide and that would be awful... He has been a good friend for 2 years of my life. He knows more about me that people I see on a day to day basis...

And, that being said, I never want to speak to him again.

Goodbye, Sorcha Rowan. And Good riddance.

30 April, 2020

What about Bob? Getting ready for Sh*t to hit the fan!

Hello, loyal readers! I'm back! Well, sort of - I never actually left. I've just been busy and haven't updated this blog since fucking JANUARY...

There is a LOT going on in the news these days and a lot of people are throwing out a lot of random terms and paranoia... including, but not limited to civil war, social unrest, economic collapse... you name it, and someone somewhere has said it in the last 60 days.

So today, we're going to talk about Bob - Your potentially life-saving new best friend. Bob stands for Bug Out Bag - and, for those who don't know, a Bug Out Bag is a bag that you keep packed and ready to go by the door, or someplace easily accessible, in case of the worst-case scenario where Shit hits the fan (SHTF) and you need to get the fuck out of town - GTFO.

Not mine - but similar enough for this blog post... 

Now, keep in mind that this is not your "prepper" stash. This isn't the things you have in the bunker to see you through the first 11 weeks of the zombie plague... no no. This is the "We need to GTFO right now and we don't have time to pack" bag. This isn't a camping bag or a hiking bag... this is a bag to buy you piece of mind in the worst case scenario of "I need to leave my home right now or potentially die from a thing."

And you need to go into this with that in mind...

28 January, 2020

The end is NIGH and YOU ARE FUCKED - A Dr. Bourbon Apocalyptic Missive...

We’ve all seen the movies – first it’s one guy, then ten, then a thousand, then BAM! We flash-forward five years and we’re told through various cut-scenes and flashbacks how the world ended while the hero tries to score some gas out of a dust-covered SUV in the city.

Well, fuck a lot of that! 

You want to know what truly frightens me about the news and the world lately? What keeps me up at night once the kiddos are in bed and I’m out of alcohol?

 Four words:     

The Wal-Mart Parking Lot.

Yep. That’s it. That’s why I am scared to death of Corona Virus, Ebola and/or any disease, super-flu, cold, epidemic, pandemic or any other word that the news media can throw around in sound bites to frighten people.

Why? Why does this make me quake with fear? I shall tell you, good reader.

Today it is raining. It is cold, wet and miserable outside and I needed to stop by the Wal to get some fixins for tonight’s dinner – and oh, sweet mother of fuck! I was faced with Wal-Mart’s parking lot. Carts everywhere – people parked in the walkway so they could load their groceries without getting wet – going up the down aisle - cats and dogs LIVING TOGETHER!!!! Mass hysteria!  

And that’s just because of the minor inconvenience of rain… just some water falling from the sky.

Now – imagine if you will an ACTUAL emergency! 


It would be every man for himself – I would fully expect to see old-west style shoot-outs in the parking lot over cases of water or surgical masks. People are assholes, man. And nowhere in America is that more obvious (other than Twitter that is) than Wal-Mart. 

If I cannot expect a man to walk 20 feet in the rain to maneuver a shopping cart out of the way of other would-be shoppers because it is raining – how can I even THINK about expecting him to wait patiently for a vaccine during an epidemic or nationwide crisis? Stand inline for water or rations during an emergency? FUCK NO! Thank you very much!

This is ‘Murica and I take what I want!

I do think that, for the most part, people are wonderful and will do what’s right – but then again, the mob mentality and the seriously overwhelming sense of “Mine” in this country make me very much fear any sort of disaster that lasts longer than a few weeks.

I hope I am wrong, I really do – actually, I hope that I never get the chance to find out. But, in the case that things go south in a hurry – I hope people will remember to BE people. I hope they’ll remember that we are, in fact, all in this together.

So… with that being said - Put your fucking carts in the cart corral, people. Quit being selfish dicks!

The end.

14 January, 2020

Dear Internet... WTF?

Dear Internet,



In the past year of having the Dr. BourbonSex account - I've tried to really open up and lay it all out there. Bare my soul as it were... I've tried to be 100% honest on my thoughts, opinions, and feelings about pretty much everything. I've tried to be a decent human being. I support everyone in their own activities and actions as long as they don't hurt anyone else or infringe upon others basic human rights.

In that same year - I've been monogamy-shamed for loving my wife and not wanting to have threesomes. I've been called a patriarchal sexist asshole because I didn't like the Captain Marvel movie. I've been told that I'm an ableist because I want to get healthy and be able to run a mile without dying at the age of 45 - and I'm fucking over it all.

So - someone help me out here... what the ACTUAL fuck is wrong with people?

When did we all become so vile and hateful? When did we all go from supporting everything to supporting everything, but only so much as it relates to me? Fuck that noise.

I've only blocked a few people on this account... one was a weirdo asshole who was a massive MAG-Hat wearing douchebag. (Wrote a blog post about it here) But everyone else pretty much got a pass. People are allowed, even encouraged, to have different opinions. Jesus, that's what makes the world go round.

I've muted a few accounts... but that's mostly out of a desire to NOT see giant dicks on my twitter feed while I'm at work. Timeline dick-pics are STILL dick-pics people. And that's it.

But no longer.

Going forward, my ban-hammer will be strong and swift. I'll come down on you like Thor going after Thanos' head at the start of Endgame.

I've got enough of my own insecurities and anxiety issues that I don't need to deal with yours. Unfollow me if you want - I won't care. There are maybe... 20? Yeah... about 20 people on my twitter timeline whose absence would actually bother me. Everyone else is a fucking stranger, and I can do without being judged by your strange, personal qualms with the universe.

If I use the wrong pronoun - it's not an attack on you. I probably just didn't know. Please see that above bit about how you're a stranger. You can't expect me to know your life story via Tweets. So if I slip, take a moment to kindly suggest corrective action before running off at the mouth about how I've negated your personhood on accident.

I try to be a good person and to love everyone. I rarely speak with malice (unless I'm talking about Debbie... FUCK Debbie) so please ask yourself, "Is Dr. B really talking shit about me?" - the answer is probably a resounding "No."

And with that - I'm off. Today has been far too much for me to keep giving a fuck.

Have a lovely Tuesday!

-Dr. B

02 December, 2019

Reviewing Books and Pushy Authors...

Today, I'd like to talk to you fine people about the dreaded book review.

Book reviews can make or break an author. They can showcase the work of someone by telling others how much they liked or disliked a book and for what reasons. But everyone (at least in some writing communities... looking at you, Twitter) seems to think that anything below a 5-Star review is some blight. Some people think a 3-star review will sound the death knell for any aspiring indie-author. And that's just ridiculous.

Writing a shitty book and publishing it is the death knell for indie-authors... Your 1st draft should NOT be your finished product.

One of my all-time favorite books ever written has 248 1-Star reviews, 277 2-Star reviews, and 271 3-Star reviews on Amazon... Shocking, right? This book also has 1,608 5-Star reviews and a movie based on it that has a similar distribution of reviews.

Because of the new "EVERYONE IS PUBLISHING!" world of writing, we all thrive to have that solid 5-Star rating. We ask our family and friends to, discretely, leave reviews that tell the world how great our books and stories are. We build up "Street Teams" or whatever they're called these days... and we try to send legions of rabid fans to Amazon to flood our work with 5-Star ratings to get us all the way to #1 in our given genres... They're all "GO, MY MINIONS! LEAVE ME GREAT REVIEWS!!!" - And, this is just me being honest here, I think that cheapens things a bit. I get it. You're trying to make money. You're trying to be a brand or get a name for yourself. We all are. But, Jesus, do it by writing quality content and letting the readers decide.

If I leave a 4-Star review, I don't hate the book, or the author, nor do I have something against the author as a human being. I will most likely re-read that book and recommend it to other people.

If I leave a 3-Star review, I don't think the author should be upset by it... I still enjoyed the work. Just not as much as some other things I've read.

I, personally, won't leave a 1 or 2 Star review on a book.

Why is this an issue? WHY am I writing about this?  Well, I recently left a 4-Star review for a book. And the author asked me, "Why not 5?" -- and he asked this not in a "I would like to understand and improve my craft" way, but in a "What the fuck, dude?" way. And that rubbed me the wrong way.

I owe you, the author, NO sort of explanation.

I am a consumer and you have released a product to the world. It is up to me to decide where this product sits in my "pantheon of reviewed items." Your book sits on my 4-Star shelf. It was good. I liked it a lot. I will re-read it at some point and I've even recommended it to people ALREADY! - but since you're being a passive aggressive shit about the number of stars in my reviews - I'll probably be recommending it a lot less now.

And this - is how I would breakdown book reviews and the "star rating" system...

1-Star should be used for books that are poorly written with typos and bad grammar. It should NOT be used because "Well, I don't like the F-Word." - THAT is personal taste. Not a review. We've all seen these reviews and these people are trolls. They can get fucked. (I will NOT leave a 1-Star review)

2-Stars should be reserved for books that were okay, but not stellar. Books that won't be re-read in the future. (I will NOT leave a 2-Star review)

3-Stars should be for books you like. And may re-read at some point. Books that you enjoyed reading and were well-written. You should say WHY you liked the book and WHAT you thought could be improved upon in your opinion.

4-Stars should be for books that you would most likely buy in two different formats. Something that you will absolutely read again and recommend to other people. You should go out of your way to explain to people WHY you liked this book so much.

5-Stars should be for the books that evoke emotions within you and make you want to be IN the book. 5-Stars should be "I want this book signed and on my bookshelf forever!" You should do your best to explain to the reader WHY they need this in their life.

So - there you have it. Dr. Bourbon's guide to reviewing books.

04 October, 2019

Anxiety and the inability of action

Let us, once again, discuss anxiety. The fun, paralysis-inducing anxiety that we often don't see and can't feel until it's too late and we end up fucking ourselves because sometimes a thing seems so fucking big that we don't know how to tackle it... so it grows and grows and we keep ignoring it... then it all comes falling down and tries to drown us in the bullshit.

Because, you know, that's fun!

In this instance - I'm talking about debt, finances, and, most importantly, student loans.

Lady Bourbon and I live comfortably. Not like SUPER comfortably, but we get to go out to eat from time to time, our bills are generally paid on time, and we have some stuff set aside for an emergency. But, like many Americans, we are one serious illness away from probably being homeless. And, for that at least, I blame the American healthcare system and insurance companies. Unless we happen to become millionaires overnight - this will probably never change.

Student loans, on the other hand... fuck me.

Lady Bourbon does not have them. But I do. I have a lot of them. My first couple of years were at a private college with $24,000/year tuition. I had a scholarship - but not for $48,000. Then, I joined the army and did all that shit and was told I'd get "student loan repayment" as part of my incentive. What they did NOT tell me, however, was that said repayment was for "pre-existing loans" and they "had to be from a State College or University."  So that $48,000 tab I ran up... still a thing.

But let us fast forward many years where I've been putting my loans on forbearance  or paying the absolute minimum possible just because I didn't want to fuck with them. Then, I get a nice "payment holiday" for a year and they are forgotten completely.

Then... I get a letter with the words "defaulted" in the title.

And I'm terrified.

I made the calls, I've got the forms, but I just keep putting it off like some magical thing is going to come down, do it for me, and life will go on. I get absolutely frozen with anxiety and fear about this shit. I don't know how to handle it. What if I send this paperwork in and they're all "Sorry, dude. Your new payment plan is $600 a month." - because that would probably fucking kill me.

The bigger problem is that this anxiety also trickles down into other things and in other ways... I focus on stupid shit and things that matter pile up. Did I pay the gas bill last month? I don't know. I haven't seen a disconnect notice. What about cable? Surely I paid the cable bill... right? They all become an "oh, fuck, am I completely screwing everything up?" pile of anxiety. Then that ball rolls and rolls and rolls until one day I declare "Okay, I will fix this shit!" And I start making progress. I double-check the bills. I set up auto-pay on some of them... but what if we have a short month and the auto-pay fucks us? Better not do that... surely you'll remember to pay it... right?

So I've got a notebook and a pen on my desk today. I'm calling Nelnet and Naviant. I've caught up the bills, I've put things in place... and I'm trying to not freak the fuck out about being poor. Or poor-er than we are...

On top of the crippling anxiety that comes with facing your failures in life - comes the "let us just drink at night and forget about our problems in hopes that we can sleep." So I drink more. I eat bad food. I smoke a LOT of cigarettes. Why? Fuck if I know. Something about dopamine and the brain... When I get super anxiety-filled... I just want to eat, smoke, drink, and fuck... Because this causes my brain to excrete some tiny chemical that pushes back at the anxiety and allows me to go one for just a little longer... to just eke-out another day of existence before accepting the shit decisions I've made and having to face the fucking music...

There you go, dear internet... Welcome to a small glimpse into my anxiety nightmare for the time being.

On the bright side - it's all being dealt with at the moment... How well and how long remains to be seen.

It's my first day