Things I Wish I Had Experienced Before I Got Sober
Quitting drinking nine months ago continues to prove to be the best decision I ever made in my life. However, every once in a while I can’t help but feel a little wistful at the few opportunities I missed to get trashed in style. These feelings are mostly provoked by the better posts on textsfromlastnight.com and lurking the social lives of my peers via Facebook, but they are there nonetheless, so let me indulge my fantasies, damn it!
I would have torn. This. Shit. Up. The gaudy cans, “flavors” that are actually colors, and an appalling combination of booze and caffeine? Sign me up! I’ve sampled similar brews such as Tilt and Sparks, but they just don’t have the pizzazz of the already-legendary Four Loko. Never mind the fact that those sugar-laden craptails used to make me hurl my guts at least 56% of the time (note: aforementioned hurling may not have been the drink’s fault so much as potentially caused by chugging four warm ones in the parking lot behind the movie theater before seeing Eagle Eye in IMAX, riding the Scrambler at a Mexican carnival set up in a dirt lot next to a gas station, or equivalent). In my mind, I envision my Four Loko night to be a wild but ultimately harmless Hangover-esque caper involving minor vandalism, an unlikely happening (i.e. finding a stack of money, ending up at a party at Gucci Mane’s house, etc.), and a police chase that ends with me triumphantly escaping into the night only to wake up at a friend’s house the next morning and recount the story over waffles. In reality, my Four Loko drunk would consist of wild mood swings, public indecency, and almost certainly a real and very humiliating arrest (which has not happened yet, knock on wood).
How a former party girl with a lust for buffets, sequins, and boozing has never been to Vegas by 24 years old is beyond me. I’ve been obsessed with Vegas since I turned 20 and all my friends have been multiple times, but my broke ass has never been able to swing it when the opportunity presents itself. I mean, did you know you can drink in public in Las Vegas? Even though I am sober now, I still know a good time when I see one. Hell, if I could figure out how to drink/get drunk without being a complete terror, I would be the queen of Vegas. The Yardstick is quite possibly my favorite alcoholic accessory, and I’ve never even had one. Despite the fact that they are expensive as hell (I’ve heard) and impractical as all get-out (a friend recently told me the end of a Yardstick basically amounts to “warm alcohol slush”), I’ve always thought they were fucking rad. Some gold hoop earrings, a bikini, and one of those and I’m set. I wonder if they make them virgin?
Whiskey in a Can
Ok, so they haven’t put this on the market yet, but I heard from a reputable source (um, The Huffington Post-have you heard of it?) that it is on its way. Despite being more or less of a trash can drinker, whiskey was always my favorite. And the only time I like kitsch is when it’s an ironic way to drink, so really it’s a perfect combination. Hmm. Maybe “kitsch” isn’t exactly the right word, but I used to have a thing for drinking in ironic or unique ways. Maybe to take attention off how much I was actually drinking, or to use it as an excuse to drink more. It doesn’t matter, either way I would have been totally into it.
As I sit here and try to come up with more things I wish I had tried before quitting drinking, it occurs to me that I honestly can’t think of any more. I’ve been drunk a thousand times – a lot of them were really fun and great, but more of them were dark and scary, and I regret that more than anything on this list. If the only things I missed out on were Four Loko, Vegas, and Whiskey in a Can, then I think I made the right decision. Besides, I’m doing Vegas this year, and now that I’m not pissing my money away on booze, I can afford to just light it up and smoke it at the Blackjack table and I don’t even have to get my dick out.
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If you’ve been looking for a chance to say something then this very well could be it.
I wish to God I’d had a list like this when I was 23.
Answer phones better than anyone else has answered phones before. Relay messages so brilliant, they bring people to tears. Turn the coffee run into the choreography of Swan Lake. Become best friends with every intern and every underling and every taxi driver you encounter.
I remember taking the pen and notebook from that woman outside the courtroom, flipping to a clean page in the book, and writing, JESSICA IS SAD in big, bold, uncoordinated letters. “My sister is going to be a good writer someday! Look at how nice her lines are!”