I believe there are some nights when it’s just not in the cards for you to hang out with others. It’s as if the world simply wants you to have time to reflect, ponder, and get absolutely tanked in the company of, well, yourself. You never planned for it to be this way. You wanted to bullshit with some friends, troll the bars for potential suitors, and make some questionable decisions. However, after you’ve exhausted your top-tier friends, all of whom are “taking it easy,” “saving money,” or “have shit to do tomorrow”–but are really just being downright lame–you may attempt hitting up a second-rate friend or two. Maybe you just give up altogether and realize it’s just you and your most dependable friend tonight: your liver.
By the time you realize it’s just you, yourself, and you hanging out this particular evening, you’re already a six pack in. It took two hours for that last friend to text you back with his or her reason for not being DTP, and you want a buzz, stat. So what now? Do you scale back the booze, turn on the Netflix, and chill? No, because that would put you to sleep and you want to get drunk, damn it! So, instead, you put on your favorite tunes and switch from beer to liquor, wine, or whatever your favorite drink is. It’s time to take this party into your own hands.
There are really only three categories to fall into as your solo rager progresses. Sometimes you hit one and stay there, and sometimes you visit all three: king or queen of your own personal concert party, deep thinker, and emotional mess.
If this slippery slope of boozing strikes a happy chord with you, being able to jam out to whatever music suits your personal fancy is great. There’s no input or whining from others concerning their music choice and you can literally dance like no one is watching, because no one is, in fact, watching.
If this party for one penetrates to your intellectual side, you can solve all the world’s problems in a single sitting–at least in your head. As you sit there and ponder, you start asking yourself things like, “What is our purpose on Earth?” and “How can I become a millionaire in the next 10 years?” The next thing you know, you’re Googling conspiracy theory websites until you’re one-eyeing it so hard, you go back to the music and order a pizza. You probably won’t remember most of your major breakthroughs in the morning, but for a brief moment in time, the world seemed to make sense.
However, sometimes, especially at our age, no amount of intoxicating vices can bring you to understand how you ended up here, where you’re going, or how you’re going to get there. It’s overwhelming. Whether it’s brought on by another failed relationship, a job you hate, or a disdain for growing up and having to deal with adult problems, sometimes all you can do is cry it out. Pour that bottle of wine and a six pack on top of those postgrad concerns and jump on the hot mess express. Indulge in this self-loathing until the solo rager train brings you back around to happy drunk town. Then you can start all over again, back at the “concert for one.”
(This article is dedicated to a balcony that has seen me celebrate, jam the eff out, overthink things, drink excessively, ugly cry, hope, and wish. Also, consider this an apology of sorts to any observant neighbors.)