Barry had long, curly, nicely groomed black hair. His features were dark; during the interview he said he was mainly of Peruvian and Italian ancestry, with some Irish and Polish as well. He had a muscular build, which was accented by the sleeveless black shirt he was wearing. It looked like he had not shaved in a while; there was maybe a week's worth of growth to his beard, all of it jet black.
There was a fierce intensity about him. He spoke emphatically and passionately about everything that came up in the interview, as if he contained a tremendous energy that surfaced no matter what the topic. He was intelligent and thoughtful. However, he also seemed restless and erratic, as if he were barely in control of the energy he possessed.
His life was in disarray. He had been fired from his job that morning. During the past week he had either missed work or arrived late nearly every day, and when he arrived late again that day the boss fired him. His mother had gone out of town for the week, and in her absence he had gone on a spree of alcohol and drug use that left him in no condition to work each morning. He had taken "uppers" until late at night, "downers" to make him steep, then "uppers" to get him up again. The result was that "I would get too screwed up and then I'd sleep past the time I was supposed to wake up."
By "downers," he explained, he meant alcohol and marijuana; the "upper" he used was cocaine. He seemed to recognize that he had a problem controlling his substance use, although he did not see himself as being dependent on drugs. "I don't feel that I have a drug addiction problem," he said. "I just feel I have a problem with trying to control myself, of when I'm going to do it and when I'm not."
He had come to rely on the drugs to relax him and help him unwind.
The downer before the bedtime is just kind of a nice thing for me to sit back and enjoy. [What kind of feeling does it induce?] It induces