That brought alcoholism out of the closet. Because AA presented a solution, it became a public service for media to discuss the disease of compulsive drinking and recovery. Jack Anderson led the conga line.
But, like all memes, that one peaked and became a yawner. It didn't save the tired subject that there was a new wrinkle: the female drunk. And it was a bit too cute that those women, such as Caroline Knapp and Susan Cheever, who published books about their own boozing framed the malady as a love affair.
Surprisingly, though, The New York Times recently published yet another account from a female about her alcoholism. The author is Kera Yonker. The details are predictable. Not one makes the story worth telling. Even at a closed AA speaker meeting, it would be a plain-vanilla saga.
Reading Yonker made me wonder if our society is still suffering a hangover from the era of Oprah when we were rewarded for letting it all hang out. Disclosing the dark side got miscreants, the reckless, and the still-broken on talk shows, knocking out books, and being the center of attention at dinner parties.
As a gimmick, some restaurant or even a bar (LOL) can attract more business and lots of publicity if it posts signs: "Thank you, but we don't want to hear about your suicide attempts, substance abuse, or spouse cheating."