It started innocently enough.

I was 13. My friend Bobby had a birthday party in the neighborhood.

After the presents were opened and the cake passed out, he whispered that he wanted to show me something.

Bobby motioned toward his treehouse and up we went. In the corner of the hideout was a cardboard box. He reached in and from beneath a stack of his father’s Playboys and pulled out a clear plastic baggie.

Inside was a small black cookie.

“What is it?'” I said.

“It’s called an Oreo,” Bobby said.

I took one bite, then another, letting the chocolate wafers and creamy white center  wash over my palate. I ran my tongue over my front teeth and into the grooves of the molars, savoring every morsel. The rush was intense.

Soon, I was downing a sleeve every few days. By age 14, it was a package a week.

I sprinkled them on ice cream, crunched them into malts, baked them into brownies. Then, an 11th-grader with an out-of-town connection turned me on to a substance that was supposed to magnify their effect three to four times.

With its ability to soak the cookie and reduce it to near mush, milk pushed me over the edge.

Oreos now didn’t have to be eaten. They could be absorbed staight into the bloodstream.

It’s been more than 30 years and countless cavities since the treehouse incident. Things have improved somewhat.

I’m functional and able to hold down a job. But every morning at breakfast, the chocolate sandwich cookies consume another part of the rest of my life.

Tomorrow can’t come fast enough.

My name is Rhett Morgan and I’m an Oreo-holic.


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