From the May 1968 magazine.

Carrying the Message

First things first

Last week I was working with a drunk who had been on a fifteen-day binge. For four evenings running I talked with him. There was a bottle under his bed. I told him my story; he liked it, liked me, and did not take a drink out of his fifth over the weekend, as sick and as nervous as he was.

He asked if I would come back on Tuesday night. His boss was coming to see him; he had not worked for two weeks. He thought my being there would give him added support. I was working for a trucking firm in Richmond, but I said I would. Work was a little slack that Tuesday, and my boss told me to clock out about two PM. I went home, had a bath, changed clothes, and had my supper about five PM. The terminal manager called and said a late-night man was sick--could I come in and help out for the night? I told him I had something planned and could not. One hour later the big boss called, and I told him the same thing. He did not give me time to explain, just said not to come to work any more.

-- J. B.

Richmond, Virginia

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