What's Your Pleasure or Pain?

For a beginner, this could be the trickiest part. You know what kind of drug you're looking for, but you don't want to ask for it by name — despite Patty's suggestion. You're also not sure exactly how to describe what's wrong with you. Here's some help:

Darvocet, Percocet — You have some mild pain, perhaps a sore jaw.

C. Stiles
C. Stiles

Xanax — You have a lot of anxiety, some tension in your chest.

Valium — You have some anxiety and a sore lower back, though you're not sure why. You're also a little sad.

Vicodin, hydrocodone — You hurt your back moving boxes. It's been very sore for more than a week, and you've had to miss work.

Methadone — It began with a back injury, and now you've been on pills for a while, and it hurts when you stop.

Klonopin — You have a lot of anxiety and you aren't fond of how you feel on Xanax.

Adderall — You can't focus when you read long magazine stories. Or you're already on an antianxiety med and need some balance.

OxyContin, oxycodone — You fell off a roof. It was two stories. You're in severe pain. You can hardly sleep. You were just barely able to get to the clinic.

Roxycet — You were hit by a car. It's the worst pain you've ever felt, and you feel it all over.

Nifty Places to Get Buzzed

Disclaimer: Consuming or acting under the influence of any type of inebriant in any of these places significantly increases your chances of death and/or incarceration.

The Everglades

It's isolated, dark, and quiet, and you're surrounded by nature. The long Florida sky twinkles every night over the swamp. There are police, though, and the physical risks are obvious: killer gators, pythons, panthers, skunk apes, and drunken swamp men.

A high-rise balcony

The fourth Nickelback song of the night just played on the stereo, and the party you're at is beyond salvageable. Outside, though, the cool kids are passing around something to make this awkward debacle a little more bearable. The view is great from any high-rise in South Florida, but death is just one misstep away.

Your bar bathroom

In Miami, it might be in a strip club. In Fort Lauderdale, it could be in an old spring break bar along the beach. In Palm Beach, you would be at a swanky, gilded restaurant, one sink over from a hedge-fund manager looking to share. True Florida debauchery.

Golf or disc golf course

Often overlooked and forgotten, this place requires some planning and scouting. But if it's a beautiful day and you're with buddies in the woods between the fourth and fifth holes, who could blame you? On the other hand, getting kicked out of a club is really embarrassing, and going to jail in golf clothes is an unbelievable nightmare.

The beach

Of course. You're in Florida. You wouldn't be a complete degenerate wannabe reality star if you didn't take your partying to the beach at least one time. Beware the angry parents, the beach cops, and the sharks, in that order.


Betting Big, South Florida Style

Every time you pull onto I-95, you're gambling with your life. But for the truly debauched, that isn't enough. You need the extra thrill. You crave that moment when you learn whether you'll be dining on steak and fine wine for a week or you'll be cursing the world with a wad of losing betting stubs in each hand, trying to figure out how you're going to tell the wife that you lost the kids' college fund.

Well, South Florida has dozens of ways you can satisfy that urge to risk your rent money. Before pro football and spring break, the main tourist attraction in these parts was the pari-mutuels — the horse tracks, the dog tracks, the jai-alai frontons (where you can bet on men who barely speak English flinging a goat-skinned puck about 200 miles per hour). In the past few years, most of those places have added rows upon rows of slot machines and crowded poker rooms. These days, all across South Florida, at any hour of the day, you can find chips clacking and slot machines rocking. Here's a guide to help avoid going bellyup in the first few hours.

Players You'll Meet at Your Poker Table

There's something beautiful about the bond poker players share in South Florida. In a place full of dazzling beaches, fine dining, and nonstop nightlife, these men (and a few women) would rather be in a dark room, sitting around a table of strangers and staring at cards. Make no mistake — that mutual agreement doesn't preclude anyone from taking all of your money in a single hand. The maximum buy-in everywhere is still $100 (that's going up soon), but chip stacks rise and crumble with veritable ease.

So it helps to know who you'll be seeing at the tables. Here are some players you might run into around South Florida:

Retiree Randy

He's been receiving Social Security for quite some time. He doesn't see his family, but he sees the same degenerates in the card room every day without fail. Randy talks to the dealer so much that it makes everyone at the table feel weird. Don't worry, though — he'll leave the table when they open the dinner buffet.

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