Just Walk Away (a Blast from the Pabst)

Blast from the Past Al K Hall Anonymous sobriety recovery alcoholism

Over the Christmas holiday, i saw an excellent documentary called Pearl Jam Twenty by Cameron Crowe, which describes the rise and rise of Pearl Jam. The band was formed from the ashes of the seminal grunge band Mother Love Bone after their sadly gifted frontman, Andrew Wood, died of a heroin overdose in 1990. Andy’s story and the film touch on Kurt Cobain’s suicide which brought back this Blast from my past.

Mother Love Bone – Chloe Dancer / Crown of Thorns

In 2005 i saw a different movie. The film, Last Days, was made by indie director Gus Van Sant and is loosely based on Kurt Cobain’s final days before his death. i attended the last showing one Friday night after my company’s cocktail party and passed out while i watched it. i was brought back (one shoe missing, sprawled out with my legs slung over the backs of the seats in the row in front of me) by three burly staff members during the end credits. They asked me to leave, i found my shoe, put it on and walked away.

Last Days Poster Al K Hall Anonymous recovery alcoholism sobriety

i walked away again early January 2011, when i walked into my first AA meeting.

i’m the one who walked away. Many artists i admire tripped, then fell and were left behind but i, i walked away. While my voice may not be as loud or as powerful or as pure as some of those who have passed before me, it is mine and it is still here so it falls on me to say what they cannot. And i tell you, “Walk away. Just walk away and don’t look back. Walk away now, while you can still  walk.”


About Al K Hall

Like a battered drinker or a punch drunk boxer, i am here for another round. For those of you who don’t know me, i’m a semi-professional writer on the rocks and a non-practicing alcoholic (if after 30 years of practicing, you still can't do something well, it's best to just give it up). For those of you who do know me, thanks for stopping by anyway and where’s the ten bucks you owe me? Welcome to my Bar None. A hole in the wall where we can hang out and trade the kind of stories you swap only when you’ve had one too many and either can’t find your way home or are afraid to. Hell, it’s cheaper than therapy and plus the pictures are prettier. Here we’ll crack open bottles and jokes and ‘last call’ are the only dirty words you’ll never hear. Pull up a stool and make yourselves at home.

Posted on January 5, 2013, in Alcoholism, Blast From The Pabst, Lessons in Recovery, Recovery and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.

  1. Damn fine post!

    I’m embarrassed to say I haven’t seem either movie. I’m definitely adding them to my watch list.

    So glad we walked away and are here to tell about it!

    • Pearl Jam Twenty is well worth the watch, while Last Days is kinda special. It’s very slow, more of a mood piece, and is meant to be reminiscent of Kurt Cobain but does not even pretend to be based on reality.

      Keep coming back, my friend!

      Al K Hall

  2. I’m glad you were able to walk away.

  3. I for one am very happy you were one of those who walked away, there were times I wondered which side of the equation you would end up on.

    It was great seeing you over the holidays, keep up the good work and thank you very much for this blog.


    • Hi there, brother!

      Coming out of the woodwork, eh? Thanks for commenting! Good timing as i made mention of you in my most recent post, you sobriety hero, you.

      You definitely saw a lot of me at my worst. My university years were where i learned how to be an alcoholic and then the couple years before i left for Yeaman were when i started practicing. Yes, there were a lot of moments, like the car accident, where i’m sure it seemed i wouldn’t make it out the other side. i appreciate your presence in those times because you were able to extend a helpful hand and listening ear without coming across as preachy; setting yourself up as a role model for me in my sobriety as that attitude is one i try to emulate.

      It was great seeing you over the break as well, and i appreciate your support.

      Keep coming back,

      Al K Hall

      • Sometimes the hardest part of the recovery process is waiting for the subject in question to realize they are in need of help.

        I could not be happier or prouder of the progress you are making in your recovery, any part i can play in it I am glad of.

        • Sometimes the hardest part of the recovery process is waiting for the subject in question to realize they are in need of help.

          True ‘dat. i wish i hadn’t made friends and family wait so long but if i’d quit earlier, i don’t think it would’ve stuck. i had to go through what i went through to get where i am.

          Keep coming back, brother,

          Al K Hall

  4. Beautiful post, especially that last bit. Bravo.

    • Too kind! Writing this blog for me is nice because it’s a place where i don’t force myself to write well or be especially clever. This blog is a place for me to tell simple stories simply, and that’s both refreshing and soothing for me. i’m so glad you picked up on that and like it. 🙂

      Keep coming back,

      Al K Hall

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