SOMEWHERE near the middle of “The _______ With the Hat,” Stephen Adly Guirgis’s lacerating portrait of a couple trapped in the self-inflicted prison of addiction, it becomes clear that simply putting the cork in the bottle will not fix everything. Or anything, really.
So opens a review in The New York Times written by David Carr, himself a “recovering addict”, 12-stepper, and author of his own addiction memoir. Thus it shouldn’t be surprising when he goes on to describe the main character, Jackie, as a:
ball of id who is doing his best to stay sober, one day at a time.
“Ball of id”, is of course a pejorative here which backs up a diseased/deterministic view of people with substance use problems (Corrected). He continues about Jackie:
….he is smart enough to know that if he continues to use mood-altering substances, he will be back in jail, or in a mental hospital, or, if things get really wobbly, buried in a box.
Jails, institutions, or death. Lather, rinse, repeat. The entire review is colored by Carr’s standard romanticized view of recovery which he pretends not to have: Continue reading Which Mother#$%?!ng Hat Are You Wearing?