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December 29, 2017



If you’re clean and sober, or know somebody that’s all about being clean and sober, then I’m pretty sure you’ve heard your share of a shitload of recovery feel-good bumper sticker slogans, self-help reminders and other one-day-at-a-time cliches that can be damn right annoying when you’ve been around recovery long enough.  I hear somebody tell me to “let go and let god” and I seriously want to grab a fist-full of hair and drag a bitch across the room for their complete lack of any form of original content.

I naturally gravitate more toward snarky, whacks-upside-the-head reminders like “Carry the Message, Not the Mess,” “Keep It Simple Stupid, “One Fucking Day at a Time” and I especially love “Let Go, or Be Dragged”—not necessarily original…but kinda/sorta funny.

“Let Go, or Be Dragged” pretty much sums up many moments in my life, and for the most part, it spells out my introduction to this whole clean and sober kick that I’ve been on for over five years—now don’t get me wrong, my ass was done, my ass was kicked and my ass was hardly dragged past that first step of recovery, but my ass didn’t know how to let go of the old to let in some of the new—“Um excuse me…” I would cross my arms and curl my upper lip with disgust during that first year…”I came here to get clean and sober, NOT to be a better person; my character defects have worked well for me, thank-you-very-much.”

The response:

“More will be revealed…”

That one is another personal fave that makes me want to retch.  “More will be revealed?” “No SHIT Shirley!”

“Let it go!” I was told.  “I’m trying” I responded weakly.  Then a book was held out in front of me.  “This is trying to let go.”  The book was waved in my face.  “And THIS is letting go.”  The book was slammed on the floor.  And I was like, “Oh…”

“Let Go or Be Dragged” also reminds me of a conversation that I had with my friend BK waaayyy back when, before I cashed in those party chips.  He had just moved to San Francisco.  We were talking about the janky San Fran gays vs. the oh-so-very-contemporary WeHo gays.  “San Francisco gays may be a little janky,” BK told me. “But you bitches in WeHo don’t know how to let go.  You like to hold on to those tight little t-shirts that no longer fit and you can’t let go.  Just let go Boo-Boo.  Let go.”

That leads me to another recognizable recovery bumper slogan.  It goes something along the lines of “Everything I ever let go had scratch marks all over it.”







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About Paulo Murillo,

Paulo has been writing for the gay media for over 16 years. He made his debut as a columnist for FAB! Newspaper. He has written for LA Health News, IN Los Angeles, Frontiers and The Fight Magazine. He has been featured in The Bay Area Reporter, XY Magazine, Bay Windows, Windy Times, and Press Pass Q, He has been quoted in the pages of Edge Magazine, Gay & Lesbian Times, Seattle Gay News, Fuges, and in a shitload of online news outlets and blogs, thanks in large part to Rex Wocker’s Quote on Quote – Wockner Wire.

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