There was no excusing it, Charlie was drunk. Not the happy, I’ve been to a football match and had 5 beers drunk. This was the full, I’ve drunk a bottle of hard spirits on my own on Friday night drunk. Drunk I have nothing better to do with my life than drink drunk. The sort of drinking, doctor’s wake up in cold sweats about, the drunk that Irish poets used to write about in the 18th century, Russia after Yeltsin, chemical vodka drunk.
If Charlie could comprehend anything right now, he’d be more annoyed than anything else. The tax on alcohol was huge, he’d started off steady, but as the booze kicked in, he’d just blindly tapped away on his in house dispenser, he’d get a rude shock when he checked his bank balance tomorrow.
Charlie was this drunk, because he’d been fired. Not for anything he’d done, but for the discoveries his employer had made about his forebears. There was no point arguing, he was, they said:
“A product of his patronage and with patronage like that, he had no position going forward at the agency.”
They had paid him his notice, but Charlie Keaton was now gainfully unemployed.