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Emily Ibarra

on 20 May 2015

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Transcript of book

The speaker is Nic Sheff who has had a troubled life with drugs and alcohol. He first started to drink at the age of eleven, "When I was eleven...I drank some and then I just had to drink more until the whole glass was drained empty,"(2). Not long after that he started to do drugs as well, "When I was twelve I was smoking pot,"(2). In this novel, Nic speaks about the struggles he goes through as he plunges himself deeper into his many relapses and his journey toward recovery.
The author treated his topic with much sympathy, regret, and confusion. Throughout his book the author's tone shows regret of what he has done and a change of heart. He feels sorry for what he did and it shows in the way he states his sentences. Much confusion was going on at the times he wrote the book, demonstrating that he is still not sure why he did the things he did.
Main Claim of the Author
The author uses the strategy of storytelling to tell the reader the events that occurred in his lifetime. Nic gives an abundant amount of imagery to have the reader picture themselves in that event while having the author story tell the event. The author is also able to give his own opinions to show what he feels and thinks.
"It's too goddam early and my stomach is all cramped up as I board the 747 for Honolulu"(195)
No matter how hard you fall in life it all depends on if you want to get back up on your feet.
The intended audience for this book is anybody who is trying to understand a drug addict and their daily battles. The audience needs to understand the struggles that a drug addict has to stay sober. "The more I used, the more I did things I was ashamed of, and the more I had to use" ( Sheff 20).Nic sacrifices many important things for drugs making his life very difficult. Giving him a life no one deserves.
"It's still very hard for me to believe in God, but I'm just too beaten up to fight it anymore. That's always been my problem with the twelve step program. There's all this God talk, or Higher Power talk. I could never get past the third step, ""Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God, as we understood him."" It just seemed like some religious cult or something."
This is thought provoking because Nic does not believe in a God. This shows how desperate he is to change himself for the better. He has no other options but to risk his chances with God and hope for a miracle. Nic knows he going on the wrong path and he can not do it alone. The people in charge of the twelve step program also seem to leave it to the hands of God for the patients to get better.
"It's not hard to stay sober at first. Sure, its hard...to get sober-to pull yourself out of the cycle of getting high every day and going through the horrors of detox. But, honestly, once the drugs are out of my system it isn't too difficult to genuinely feel like I never want to go through that...again. Staying sober right after coming back from a relapse is no struggle. Every time I've come out of detox, the last thing I ever want to do is get high. This time is no different." (Nic Sheff 197)
This is important to the story because it grows Nic's hope. If he believes that someone is there for him and can help him he will not stop to stay drug free. His faith will continue to grow as he faces more and more difficult challenges that lay ahead of him. With this in his mind he will try his best to be a better person which also continues the story.
The significance of this shows how difficult it is to become sober when one has been drinking and doing drugs at a young age such as Nic. He has gotten drunk for the first time at age eleven and started doing drugs at age twelve. Nic has always wanted to quit his dangerous habits but he plunges himself back after numerous attempts of going back into rehab. He feels as though he is complete when he is doing drugs, that his reason why he goes back to his dangerous habits. Once he is in rehab he has the tendency to think that his bad habits isn't that bad. He starts to blame others for his own actions by saying that they are overreacting about his problem and that he wasn't out of control.
The importance of this passage is that it shows the struggles that Nic goes through attending the twelve-step program. Once Nic has accomplished his goal of becoming sober, he feels like a new person. He feels as though he has his life on track and that he can do anything. In spite of feeling that way, Nic will always be tempted to go back to dangerous habits. Although he feels as though he does not want to ever get high again, he does anyways. In this novel, Nic talks about the struggles he goes through when he chooses drugs over his commitment to being sober.
The events that prompted the writing of this novel was the struggle of Nic Sheff. His struggles consisted of going back to his bad habits of drinking and doing drugs after being in rehab. Nic wanted to show the world the hardship that addicts go through with becoming sober after being a hardcore drug addict. "It'd seemed like, after countless rehabs and sober livings, I had finally beaten my drug problem. And yet there I was, standing on Haight Street, drunk on Stoli and stoned out on Ambien, which I'd stolen from the med room at that rehab,"(21).
Nic’s purpose for this memoir was to show himself the drug filled life he was in. Right before relapses, he asks his father for help and his father responses, “ No Nic, I’m sorry. I just can’t trust you any more"(Sheff 120).It is also for the readers to know about the family's
struggle with a disease in someone they love that they did not cause, cannot control and cannot cure, but is completely destroying them.
“I need everyone to like me and I just burn out bending over backward to make that happen. Having people be mad at me is my worst fear. I can't stand it. There is this crazy fear I have of being rejected by anyone - even people I don't really care about. It's always better to leave them first, cut all ties, and disappear. They can't hurt me that way - no one can. ” (Sheff 37).
The significance of this quote is to demonstrate Nic character as he is constantly trying to fit in. Nic always wants to do better but the drug always pulls him right back in. He acknowledges the disappointment he bring on to other people and instead of dealing with them, he leaves them.His biggest fear is rejection. For this fear he might of started dealing with all the drugs and drinking. Nic's worst problem is not facing all the damage he has made and just simply disappearing, leaving the other in agony.
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