New York, NY – James Eggleton, a 20-something corporate climber, just had a near shouting match with his wife of two years on his cell phone. He’s incredibly tired lately, he says, and is also angry for no reason, especially at the couple’s 8-month-old daughter. He is also drunk.
It’s 5:30 on a Thursday evening, and James sits in the corner sports bar he frequents, McNulty’s. Here he sees friends, and talks through problems. He also drinks.
“Usually around six or seven beers on weeknights, more on weekends,” James says. His friends say it’s about the same for them. They say when they have a rough day, some problem, they know where to turn. “It’s this,” James says, holding up his run and coke with a smile. “This takes me home again. And I’m fine… until the next day. You know. ‘Cause sometimes I throw up at work.”
Across the country, in Santa Clarita, California, the middle-aged regulars at local watering hole The Chip Shot seem to be battling different problems. But the solution is the same. “My son just had to go to rehab for fucking heroin,” says William Jefferson, a former college football player. He chugs from his pint glass in disgust. “Man, these drugs. Fucking killers. Thank God we’ve declared war o them in this country. Another one here!”