Checked out “Long Day’s Journey into Night” from the library. There were a lot of different drama recordings to choose from, but I picked that one because it had a reputation of being really good. Eugene O’Neill is a reknowned playwright, and this play gets mentioned all over the place in anthologies, etc.
I thought it was something I should experience.
So. I listened to it. I was looking forward to posting about a brilliant play, and giving my opinion of it.
It is not a fun play. I really didn’t know what to expect, but it was not a comedy.
The whole story revolves around the mother in the family, who has a drug addiction. But as the play progresses, you find out that everybody is some kind of addict.
Their interactions are filled with justifications followed by wallowing in self-loathing. Then they are all so full of regrets and warning for everyone else.
Typical junkie behavior. I find it repulsive. I find it irritating, annoying and icky. So why would a whole drama showcasing junkiness be such a hit?
I can only think that, when the play came out, not many people had experience with junkies, and so they were fascinated.
I’ve had experience with junkies. My former father-in-law was an addict. It was quite exhausting, to keep up with his whereabouts and moods. Everyone in the family had to be massively elastic and jumpy to keep up with whatever he was going to do next.
And the astounding feats of justification and self-recrimination that his wife and son did. I never knew him as anything but an addict, so I was free to categorize him. They knew what he had been before, and were always judging his current behaviour as how close or far it was from his “real” self.
And now, one of my dearest friends just discovered her fiancee is a crackhead. She was describing how he reacted when she discovered him, and the lengths he had gone to hide the habit and lie to her.
I remembered my father-in-law. I remembered “Long Day’s Journey Into Night.”
Self-deception. The easy way out…Thinking “It’s not really a lie…I will have quit the stuff before she finds out about it”
Then just a little more. And the NEED for it.
There are more people that can relate to this play than perhaps I realize.
Maybe it’s a mirror, too. It makes me wonder what I’m lying to myself about. It’s so so easy.