Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.

This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.

Arts and Entertainment

Video: Charles Bukowski Says Alcohol Is Better Than Pot

Before you
Dear reader, we're asking you to help us keep local news available for all. Your tax-deductible financial support keeps our stories free to read, instead of hidden behind paywalls. We believe when reliable local reporting is widely available, the entire community benefits. Thank you for investing in your neighborhood.

It's no secret that Charles Bukowski loved to booze it up. The Los Angeles-based poet and novelist, one of the greatest American writers of the 20th century, was introduced to alcohol at a young age and professed throughout his life that alcohol helped him cope with the drudgery of life. "If I hadn't been a drunkard, I'd probably have committed suicide," says Bukowski in the following clip recently shared by Dangerous Minds.

Taken from The Charles Bukowski Tapes, the author talks about the advantages of indulging in alcohol while also unfortunately dealing with stereotypes about potheads. His central thesis: you can recover from a heavy night of drinking, whereas smoking weed turns you into a dope. "Alcohol gives you the release of the dream without the deadness of drugs," he says.

"If you gotta be anything, be an alcoholic."

Bukowski died in 1994 at the age of 73. Amazingly, he died of leukemia, not anything directly related to alcoholism.

Support for LAist comes from