I Really Hate Alcohol
Whenever I’m in a drinking situation and somebody new finds out that I generally stay away from alcohol, the first thing they do is tilt their head, furrow their brows and look at me like I’m some kind of unrecognizable foreign object. “You don’t…drink?,” the tone implying that everybody is busy getting drunk off their ass all the time, which is basically what it seems like from my sober perspective. “Not really. Only sometimes, and very little even then.”
Like clockwork the next thing out of their mouths is “Congratulations!” or “Good for you!” which, OK, is very nice and everything, but to me it just seems like the strangest thing to say to somebody about their non-drinking habits. It’s not like I won a prize!!! What you’re really saying is, “Wow, you perfect little angel, you…Now if your straight-edge, puritanical self will excuse me, I need to go spike this coffee just a little bit more so I can get through the rest of this god damn day.”
It’s not that I’ve ever had an alcohol problem, or that I’m judgmental about people who enjoy getting plastered. It’s not a moral high ground, either. Alcohol, or really being shit-faced/smashed/wasted, has just never interested me in any capacity whatsoever. Not even when I was a freshman in college and everybody drank out of those little red cups because it was cool. I was always the Urkel at the parties with the lame ass bottle of water, not going anywhere near the keg, not drinking from a red cup, not touching the punch because I was afraid it was spiked. You know how college house parties go — if there’s some liquid in the house, pour it all in a bowl and spike it!
Every weekend I hear stories about how you got so drunk you don’t understand how your heart is still beating. You text me at 3am, “I’m soo drokpl.” You’re so drunk you ended up in the emergency room. You’re so hung over you can’t eat anything. You’re so hung over you can’t get your homework done/meet me for brunch/don’t have any will to live. You’re so hung over your hair hurts. You’re so hung over the world is spinning. You got so wasted you don’t remember giving that cute straightish guy whose GF was out of town for the weekend a BJ, so now you have gonorrhea — whoops.
None of that seems appealing to me in the least! I get that alcohol is a social lubricant, and that people use it to open themselves up and to do or say things they normally wouldn’t because we’re all so freaking uptight when we’re sober. But why you need to drink UNTIL YOU PUKE ALL OVER MY BRAND NEW LOUBOUTIN’S, which I just got at a sample sale??
I hate alcohol because I don’t get the point of being a drunken hot mess, mascara running, wig crooked, one shoe half off, pants unzipped, walking down Bedford Avenue screaming “Pancakes!” I’ll never be drunk because I’m a control freak. I need to be aware of every single thing that’s happening to me and around me at all times. The idea of losing my inhibitions and not having any control over what I’m doing or saying really scares the shit out of me. Unless of course I decided to lose my inhibitions and not have any control, in which case, you better look out. But I’ll also never be drunk because I want to be there to experience what I’m experiencing. When I go out dancing I want to hear the music, I want to see people’s outfits, I want to be in the moment, not floating above it and unable to process anything about it the next day. There’s such a culture of recounting our weekends on Monday mornings at the office, talking about how shit-faced we got, but what’s the point of that?
I’m not a saint, and I have plenty of other vices, I promise. The reason I’ll never be drunk is because I have an addictive personality. I just know I would be an alcoholic. It’s the same reason I’ve never done drugs, even though I’ve often fantasized about trying something. The thing is, when I like something, I rrrrreally like it and I want it all the time, as much as possible. I’m like this with anything I obsess over. So I would do everything I could to get my fix, which I guess would make for an interesting memoir but would likely get me fired from my day job.
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Even as I write this now I am debating whether or not to erase it all together.
When I say I’m in love with you, I mean I love the story I can tell to my next lover, about my ex-lover, about how beautiful things were, how intense, how storybook, what a couple we were, and how you gradually, inexplicably, painfully, bit by bit, disappeared.
“I used to be afraid of failing at something that really mattered to me, but now I’m more afraid of succeeding at things that don’t matter.”
I was 24 and, while not gay, ever since college I had been getting more attention from gay men than from heterosexual women.