In the Aftermath of Brangelina

I keep hearing that “karma is a bitch.”

“If he’ll do it with you, he’ll do it to you,” the hens cluck to each other. They shake their heads but they can’t hide their smiles.

We want women to be punished. It serves as a warning out there to other would-be seductresses that no matter what, they’ll get theirs. No happily ever afters for your kind.

Brad Pitt and Angelina are getting a divorce! Brad cheated! Coke and whores! Marion Cotillard is pregnant and Brad is the father! He’s a pothead and an angry drunk! He screams at the kids! He attacked Maddox!

No, Angelina is crazy. She’s on heroin. She’s anorexic. She’s angling to join the English House of Lords, and she needs Brad out of the way. She’s having an affair with William Hague. No, Angelina is bisexual, and we all know bisexuals are amoral sacks of hormones who will shag anything. She’s bedding one of those bitches in her coven: Arminka Helic. She never disciplines the children, never even raises her voice. Brad has to do all the discipline and he finally had enough and lost his temper. Plus, Angelina is manipulative. She knows his buttons and she pushes them on purpose.

Angelina and Brad’s story reminds me about the way women are judged-makes me want to keep my story all to myself. Certainly to keep it anonymous and change the names and places. No matter what happens to me, I will be told I deserved it. My suffering is “karma.” It’s “weakness.” I’m just a slutty pillhead and I deserve whatever I get. I’m not even gorgeous like Angelina. She’ll get at least three-fourths of a pass for that. And the cancer gene thing. The inherited cancer gene. The only cancer I ever had was the kind you get from an STD. Again, my fault. That’s what they say.

I know I’m not making any sense. The source of my supply ran out. Actually, that’s not true. I managed it poorly, and now I’m running out. Vicodin. That’s my poison. If it was heroin like Angelina Jolie’s alleged poison, I’d probably have some right now. I’d be nodding instead of writing. When I got my last bottle of Vicodin, I acted like it was bottomless. took them two, three at a time. Didn’t even count them out and parcel them away for the weeks to come. Two days ago I picked up the bottle and noticed it made a rattling sound instead of a pleasant thunking sound.

“What’s your poison?” Robert had asked me that. My boyfriend at the time, Peter, took me to Robert’s crazy nice house in the Hollywood Hills. The kind that has winding stairs up to the front that would be a bitch to carry groceries up, but still costs millions of dollars and sells the first day it hits the market. Hell, it never even has a sign out front because realtors keep these pocket listings for a private, exclusive clientele.

My ex Peter was a rich kid. This was a long time ago, before I knew what “the rich kids of Instagram” were, but he was of their ilk. His parents are not celebrities, but celebrity adjacent for sure. The buddy, Robert had weed and pills. This was back before you could get a prescription for the former and couldn’t get one for the latter.

Peter and Robert’s girlfriend had gone onto the balcony to smoke out, but I was cold and I didn’t like weed. Still don’t. I often think my life would be easier if I did. It makes me feel stupid, thick, and hungry. The only thing I really like about myself is my brain, and I’m always right on the verge of being fat, so it’s literally the worst drug I can think of.

“I like Vicodin,” I told him. He handed me a baggy with 5 pills in it. Big green Lortabs. We didn’t worry about the acetaminophen in those days. I looked at them, a little slow on the uptake. This was not my scene. “Cool.” I handed them back. He held up his hand.

“No. Those are a gift. You want more, I’ll give you friend prices. Let me know.” I thanked him, pretending this kind of thing happened all the time. Like the Opus One he’d just poured me. I had thought Beringer was a pretty good bottle of wine.

I haven’t been on opiates all this time. I’d probably be dead by now. It feels like a long time, though. And I don’t want to quit, but I keep finding myself reading articles about Suboxone, outpatient rehab, or medical detox instead of harm reduction and cold water extraction. I want to be so fucking high right now, but I’ve got myself to a place where I’m tolerably comfortable and if I take a handful of Norco right now, like I’m dying to, I will make my brain and bloodstream scream for a big ol’ dose first thing tomorrow and then I’m back to square fucking one. I’ve got a brutal taper scheduled for the next 10 days, but I can’t miss work and I can’t get more pills.

Of course there’s a man. And he hasn’t texted me back all weekend. In fact, for the past week, all of his texts have been one word replies. “Yup.” “Haha.” “No.” I keep rereading that last text I sent. The unanswered one. Trying to imagine how it offended. Or how it simply didn’t interest him enough to respond. More than likely, he just doesn’t need anything from me right now. When he’s feeling insecure or powerless, or his latest source of supply runs out or starts to bore him, he might reach out to me. But it will be too late! Screw that. I am not going to be his bottom bitch. If he texts me again, won’t even reply.

I’m fucking with you. Of course I will.