Adventures with Beards

Garbage content made by an awful man for terrible people

QUEEN OF A THOUSAND JARS: ONE WOMAN'S DESCENT INTO THE SORDID MAELSTROM OF GLASS STORAGE ADDICTION

Normally, Adventures with Beards brings you hilarious and sexy stories and useful life advice that caresses your thighs and inspires your soles. But today I am here to talk to you all about a very serious problem that can cripple your life and make those around you sad like the man is in this picture that will be explained shortly. That problem is jar addiction.

Chronic jar addiction can occur in people, raccoons, mollusks, and dragons of any age and from all walks of life. Or death. There is a sad story of a jar addict who was found dead in a pile of jars, with his hands wrapped around his favorite jar and he still would not let go of it even though he was dead. He was just that addicted. But this is not his story. Or even mine. This is the story of a girl who for the purposes of this narrative, we shall refer to as Katy to protect her true identity.

The picture you see is the day I first recognized that Katy might love jars too much. I should have recognized this sooner, because there were a lot of warning signs. When I first met Katy during a search for roommates who would tolerate me, she asked me a lot more questions dealing with jars than I felt was appropriate for new acquaintances to discuss. I would later discover this is one of the red flags of early onset jar addiction. She asked me if I often used the jars of people I lived with, and if I would be bringing jars of my own to the house, if I was fine with a box or two of jars being stored in my closet, and if I had any ties to the jar industry which could be used to gain surplus jars or jar discounts. So I simply told the truth, which was that I just keep one or two jars of worms around at any given time, for company.

I don't think she was expecting that answer; we did not speak again about worms or jars or at all for about four months. Like most people who have never raised worms Katy is probably a wormist, and does not realize that worms are intelligent, curious, and loyal beasts that are immensely rewarding to care for. But I digress. Though jars were not mentioned verbally during this time, a series of incidents occurred which seemed like isolated instances of jar-related strangeness but were actually warning signs of a quickly escalating compulsion.

The first was one day when I walked through Katy's bedroom to go do my laundry and saw that the floor and much of the furniture was littered with jars, partially full of water. I thought nothing of it as I thought this was a rather ingenious and cheap security system; a burglar would quickly began knocking over the jars which would startle them and alert you and then they would slip and fall on their butts in the water and you'd both have a laugh and talk about how they can get their life back on track. But it was not so. In clinical terms this is known as "jar gardening" and marks the climax of Level 3 of jar addiction.

Some time later Katy began the process of buying a house with her science money. I said that's really grown up and owning a home is a great way to prevent personal homelessness before it begins. She said that is not what it was about. I asked well what is it about it? She did not answer right away, but sort of stared off into the distance and eventually mumbled something about jars…not even in response to the question, it seemed, but merely an externalization of a half-formed jar musing.

Only a week later I learned Katy had nearly been apprehended by the police; she had been discovered attempting to purchase Cuban jars from an illegal jar dealer behind Ingles and had been forced to dump out her jars en masse in order to hinder the officers' pursuit so that she might make good her escape. She seemed to have only been concerned with the loss of the jars and not with the all-to-close brush with the law. To make up for this loss, she used her amazonian stature and jar-fiending rage to intimidate myself and our friend (who I'll refer to as Nathan to protect his real identity) into going jar fishing on the French Broad. This photograph is a chilling snapshot into the harrowing nightmare that was that expedition.

We loaded up the canoe with our supplies; beer and three fire-roasted opposums captured in the basement as well as some nets to drag along the bottom of the river. Despite the fact that two-thirds of the party did not want to be there, spirits were high as we shoved off. Once out on the water, though, things got real dark real fast. The fact that Katy had run through all her spare money buying Cuban jars, champagne, and houses to put jars in seemed a perfectly expected impetus for jar fishing. Jar fishing…the practice of reclaiming lost jars from bodies of water…is just one of many sources of free jars, Katy explained. I asked what some other sources were. Katy replied "Murder" and then cackled, shotgunning a PBR after stabbing a hole in it with her powerful fingernails. Nathan asked if we would find enough jars this way and Katy just said "You better hope we do" and continued rowing in silence.

As we floated up the river, our haul was not turning out to be as bountiful as Katy had desired. We had only managed to find three intact jars, a screaming eel, and a baby floating in a basket of reeds. We left the infant to his business, but the giant eel nearly took Nathan's arm off. He was unable to row or use the nets without severe pain, slowing our pace and jar fishing and increasing Katy's ire and PBR intake rate. She turned her frustration on Nathan, who complained of needing medical attention and wanting to go home. He asked for a PBR to help with the pain, so Katy tied a bandana around his head as a "bandage for his booboo" and chugged the last PBR in front of him (see picture). Fearing for our lives, Nathan and I kept quiet until Katy had grown drowsy from a bellyful of PBR and greasy possum flesh and were able to get to shore. After this, Nathan moved to Korea and was probably never seen again. Foolishly, I remained roommates with Katy; perhaps out of my deep respect for her legendary capacity for science and booze disposal.

Years passed, and the jar collection grew, and like a coward I did nothing. Then one day I opened up a cabinet and a torrent of jars spilled forth, knocking me to the floor and filling the room around me. I lay there, bruised and winded, and when I caught my breath and was able to get enough jars off of me to attempt to stand, I could not. The floor was so thick with jars I'd fall every time; even crawling I was unable to make progress or even see where the ocean of jars might end. Helpless, I was sprawled across the kitchen floor for time beyond measure. Hungry, bloody, and afraid, I knew my only delivery would come from rescue, starvation, or the cat eating me because I couldn't feed her. Suns and moons rose and fell, and then finally the sound of a door opening came, and the jars roared outside like the onset of a biblical flood. With great strain, my atrophied muscles got me to my feet. Ironically, it was Katy who had saved me.

She said "Oh good! You found my jars."

"What under the uncaring heavens do you need all these for?" I asked.

She looked at me as if my question was ridiculous and replied,"Seriously? You know, like…milk and stuff."

I had to get some answers. Katy's disease was destroying her world, and I was in that world.

"Milk and stuff."

So I went to where milk and stuff came from…the farm. When I went to the farm, I asked what part of the farm the milk and stuff was made at. They said the creamery, so I went there. They were partially right, but this wasn't where the milk was coming from. It was brought into the creamery in buckets from elsewhere. So I followed them to the source and what I found shocked me. The milk was coming from cows. Moo cows. Just what were these cows doing to the milk? Is this the source of the addiction? I knew Katy would eat entire blocks of cheese if left unsupervised, and frequently sullied her cereal with disgusting amounts of milk instead of orange juice like a normal person. I had heard of mad cow disease, but it was not that. I talked to these cows at length, and learned they were calm and kindly creatures that were only occasionally ornery. So the final test…I brought in some jars to see how they reacted.

They didn't.

Milk was a symptom at best, a jar justification at worst. So what then? Well, when wild speculation fails me, I turn to science.

Katy was once a prestigious scientist. Like most scientists, she came from a long line of scientists, including Merlin Ambrosius, Isaac Newton, Dr. Jeykll, Dr. Who and Dr. Phil. She was born in a tiny labcoat with an even tinier magnifying glass, which grew with her as she blossomed into the belle of the science ball. Science had earned her prestige and notoriety, but it had ultimately financed her addiction. I went to her laboratory and began asking around. Her coworkers said that they had noticed from the very beginning she spent a lot of time staring at the glassware. Over time, her interest had become more focused on jars and jar-shaped glassware and less in the beakers. Beakers have been established for centuries as the primary tool for delivering top-notch science. Her fascination and over-use of jars was nothing short of heretical to the science field. She also began bringing more jars to work, and borrowing jars and failing to return them. She transferred departments eventually because there was not enough space for jars in the original.

For all my questions, I was left with no answers. Except I found out where dairy comes from, that was pretty cool. I decided to do some science of my own. I got a beaker and went to work. Taking an inventory of the current jars, and comparing my findings against the jar purchase receipts I located in Katy's desk, I was able to construct a timeline for the growth of her jar hoard. I translated this data into the following infograph, and the future it prophesied was truly terrifying:

For my own safety, I knew I had to move out. It was a sad day when I said goodbye, but only for me. As I bade farewell Katy replied that she couldn't hear me over the sound of the wind whistling through her thousand jars.

Though it is dangerous to cohabitate with a jar addict, we should not abandon our loved ones like Katy to their clinky, transparent fates. It is up to us to help them recognize they have a problem and work together to create a jar-free world where this heinous malady will no longer turn the storage of foods, liquids, and bugs into a hellscape of melted sand constructs and tears.

Today I will smash every jar I see. I hope you will too. Though we may be outnumbered by the jars, our inaction will only assure that our children and our children's children will never be free of them.

For more information on jar addiction and tips on smashing jars, please contact your local shaman or cybernetic overlord.