Mar 31, 2011


The Move

In 2008, just after Fodder’s graduation, The Tradesman lost his job. He and a thousand other employees were laid-off from the manufacturing plant they had worked at for 10+ years.

The Tradesman would work odd-jobs for a time, but by 2010, he could no longer sustain the house payment. He couldn’t find work. The family would go bankrupt, foreclose on the house, and move to Texas.

Fodder and The Reverend, however, would stay behind. They would move-in with a friend, and live there for about six months - until Fodder had completed his Associate’s Degree.

Fodder found the transition jarring. He would cry after every phone call with his family - especially after speaking to The Lion and The Agent.

Thus, after just six months alone, he would follow his family to Texas, leaving behind everything he knew, and the few friends he had spent a lifetime trying to make.

He would be alone once more.


Fodder would move into his family’s rental house in Texas, at least until he could establish a stable income in the new state.

It was here that the drinking habit started.

His family’s house was just so small. Everyone was packed-in like sardines. As an adult, Fodder was fortunate enough to have his own bedroom.

However, he had found a new job working with a promising technology MSP, and the work was testing the limits of his knowledge. Further, the drive to and from work was brutal; it wasn’t terribly far, but traffic was demoralizing.

Every Friday, he started buying a six-pack, and and would drink alone in his bedroom. Usually, he’d play a computer game or watch television.

But slowly, he was becoming depressed. It didn’t help that he had to bear witness to The Red Queen’s emotional abuse of his six year-old sister, The Agent. Just like he had experienced as a child.

Almost every night, The Agent would exit her bedroom after being tucked-in, in tears.

“I don’t want to go to sleep!” she’d cry, “My feet are dizzy!”

“Clover, GO TO SLEEP!” bellowed the Queen, “I’m going to spank you if you don’t go to bed!”

The yelling would continue. The spanking would sometimes follow. Whatever happened, The Queen wasn’t doing what Fodder later learned a parent should do this situation.

Empathy. Compassion. The parent should understand that the child doesn’t know how to process her emotions. You shouldn’t punish a child for not knowing how to do something. Especially when that tactic isn’t working, night after night.

Look inward. Self-reflect. Did The Queen ever consider that she was the one at fault?

Many years later, Fodder would discuss this memory with The Queen. She would deny every last part of it, claiming, “That NEVER happened! Clover used to sleep in my bed every night!”

How can two people have such different recollections of the same events?


For these reasons, and more, Fodder felt like he needed to escape his mother. He had to get out of the house. He was tired of listening to the abuse.

At the time, he didn’t even realize it was abuse. At the time, Mother was still “the greatest Mom that’s ever lived.” The yelling was just “Mom being Mom.” Only later would he reflect upon the situation, wishing he could have done more to help.

So, Fodder would purchase a new house, closer to work. The Reverend and a friend would become his roommates.

At first, the experience was liberating. But before long, the job, the expenses, and the maintenance of the house became debilitating.

The drinking would grow worse.

Before long, he was polishing-off a six pack every night, for weeks in-a-row. He was oversleeping, to the point that he was so hungover that he’d be late for work the next day. He was spending so much money on alcohol that he had to borrow money from his brother, just to make the house payment.

He was depressed, and he didn’t know how to fix it.

Periods of heavy drinking would return every few months for years.


data.stats.symptoms = [
    - depression



— from God Is An Astronaut - “Spiral Code”