I am again addicted to caffeine. I had kicked it and then during a trip to New York, I somehow fell into old habits again. I have only been drinking a half-caffeinated cup of coffee a day, but now I need it. Last week I didn't. Addictions are an interesting phenomenon. I am also currently addicted to sugar. I am glad I have never been addicted to anything stronger because I have a hard enough time with coffee and sweets. My lifestyle at the moment does not really support an addictionless life. I start back on coffee to make it through a particularly sleepless time, to finish that grant proposal, to complete a project and then I tell myself I will stop. There is always another grant or project though. I am not at the point of toxicity yet. This is usually when I do stop, once I get sick or start feeling really bad. Is it a question of self-discipline and self-control? Someone recently told me to read "The Corner" that it spoke on how people fall into the trap of addictions. I know my coffee habit is and is not really comparable to a narcotics habit, but I definitely understand how someone can keep going back to something they know is not good for them. Especially when it is everywhere and readily available. There are three coffee shops within 4 blocks of my house, a grocery store that also sells coffee, a new cafe scheduled to open. And all of these places have sweet things too. I saw "Darwin's Nightmare" a few years back about Lake Victoria and fishing. There are children in this movie who live on the streets and sniff glue fumes just so they can sleep through the night. Addictions are not an individual problem. Yes, we choose to do the things we know are bad for us, but there are reasons behind these choices and these reasons often stem from problems in society. We are at a point in time where we are just beginning to see the effects of a lifetime of heroine addiction in our cities. What is being done? What changes are being made that will affect why someone makes the choice to drink, to do drugs, to be swept away by any other number of things? These actions cannot focus solely on the addicted and their constitution, but also our society's structures and institutions.

And a note on yesterday's entry Relational Power. I have been watching Season 1 of 30 Rock. Episode 12 Black Tie, which I just viewed, actually has a lot to do with power in relationships. Of course it gives the illusion that it is only an individual's choice whether or not to be swayed by someone else's power, this I think is partially true, but the show doesn't address how we are socialized to accept certain dominating power structures. In fact, the show is probably part of this socializing, but maybe, I hope, that if these things are in view, we will start to become aware of them and think critically about our power and roles in relationships.