It's time to admit that we're powerless over our addiction and give ourselves over to a higher power.
That's right; it's time to break our national dependence upon Charlie Sheen.
The first step is to admit we have a problem. And the problem is that we are a manic unemployed former highest-paid sitcom actor who bangs seven-gram rocks and finishes them because that's how he rolls, one speed, one gear, go, bitchin' conduct, hanging onto resentments because they'll fuel the attack, tired of pretending he's not a total freaking rock star from Mars; other people cannot be like him, because they don't have tiger blood and Adonis DNA high priest Vatican assassin warlock addicts. (or "MUFHPPAWBSGRAFTBTHHROSOGGBCHORBTFTATOPHNATFRSFMOPCBLHBTDHTBAADHPVAW" addicts.)
But it's not too late. Now that we've admitted our problem, we can take steps to get free of our Sheen dependence. Since we don't all have such a "sheer force of will," giving us the ability to "cure it with our brains, with our minds," we'll instead take the traditional 12-step approach to managing our struggle.
Step 1: We admitted we were powerless over our addiction - that our lives had become unmanageable. Charlie, you open your mouth and we swoon. There's unrest sweeping the Middle East; Wisconsin is having a crisis within its state government; Providence, RI, lays off all its teachers; much of the Northeast is finding out that that damn groundhog is a bloody liar, but you tell us that "resentments are the rocket fuel that lives in the tip of my saber" and we just can't turn away. You've hijacked our news cycle and we will give in every time.
Step 2: We came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity. Les Moonves, we're looking at you to guide us in this period of uncertainty.
Step 3: We made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him. A powerful Nor'easter reportedly whipping up the coast, a smog alert, Lake Effect snows - God-driven nature forecasts are the one thing that can dominate our newscasts. Twenty-two minutes of people buying shovels, filling sandbags, stuck in traffic, that sort of stock footage - all this will remove our addiction from our screens. The next day, when those foreboding reports prove to be all wrong, we can credit our Higher Power for our miracles.
Step 4: We made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves. We've survived Lindsay, Mel, Courtney, Britney, Robert, Whitney, Amy. But they were all just gateway celebrities. We've hit rock bottom.
Step 5: We admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs. We have, on occasion, read TMZ.com during work hours; watched the thousands of televised interviews since February; purchased People, Us or Entertainment Weekly with any mix of Charlie Sheen, Denise Richards, Brooke Mueller or porn opportunists Natalie Kenly/ Rachel Oberlin. Or, at our darkest moment, we watched the "Sheen's-Korner" webcast.
Step 6: We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character. We'll accept John Stamos, Rob Lowe, Emilio Estevez, Christian Slater, Michael J. Fox (if there were any justice in this world), or whomever He deems worthy to create a more just and profitable "Two and a Half Men" since the Good News of Sheen's dismissal.
Step 7: We humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings. Sorry, "Half Man." It's time to step aside, for the good of our recovery. Jon Cryer needs to make this into a romantic comedy. Or maybe a workplace thing, whatever seems to work better with the test audiences. Besides, shouldn't you be heading off to college by now?
Step 8: We made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all. To all of those we mentioned in Step 4, to Carlos Santana for permanently scarring his song "Winning," and to all those other celebrities who have suffered dimished "Q" scores due to our addiction, we will watch all your TV shows, watch all your movies, download all your books to our Kindles, and buy all the products you endorse. But most of all, to Chuck Lorre: we humbly ask your forgiveness for our obsession with Carlos Irwin Estévez.
Step 9: We made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others. Naturally, we won't talk to you in person, respond directly on Twitter, or come by your house at 3 am, all full of vermouth smoothies, looking to make sure you know that you're really our favorite actor/actress/musician/artist. We'll let the paparazzi do that for us.
Step 10: We continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it. We're human. We're bound to catch a 2009 repeat of "Two and a Half Men" or "Hot Shots, Part Deux" now and again in a weak moment. The important thing is to maintain our focus to try to avoid such slips when possible. It's one daypart at a time, after all.
Step 11: We sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God, as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out. We'll probably have to take a mulligan on this one. We need to respect the "Separation of Church and Hollywood" clause in the Constitution. If not, we risk our faces melting off and children weeping over our exploded bodies. We may be paraphrasing here.
Step 12: Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to "MUFHPPAWBSGRAFTBTHHROSOGGBCHORBTFTATOPHNATFRSFMOPCBLHBTDHTBAADHPVAW" addicts, and to practice these principles in all our affairs. We'll be appearing on a special hour-long edition of CNN's "Piers Morgan Tonight," followed by an exclusive ABC interview to evangelize and celebrate our newfound Winning sobriety.