After the dust settles from weekend’s past and your body finally feels normal again, you can finally take the time to reflect on the beauty of going on a full-blown bender. Does everyone have a tiny bit of regret in their system while sitting at their desk on Monday with cold sweats and shaky hands resting on their keyboards? Yeah, of course. But when you were Periscoping yourself doing shots at the wedding’s open bar with people you can no longer name, the last thing on your mind was work deadlines and sales quotas.
In the great song “I Am,” Kid Rock references the state of his bender by saying, “I’m two days in, I got two days left to go.” There are those weekends — Memorial Day, weddings, Independence Day, bachelor parties, long weekends, tailgates, Labor Day, whatever — when you just know you’re about to embark on three to four days of aggressive boozing where the simple excuse of “being tired” holds zero weight. Where your friends will wake you up from your sleep with a, “Hey there, buddy, have a beer,” even though you just went to sleep a few hours before and never hit the REM cycle. Where you wake up on Sunday wondering why you put yourself through it in the first place.
Of course you’re going to have those moments when you’re not sure if you can take down that whiskey-soda someone blindly hands you on the dance floor. And sure, when it’s Sunday afternoon and you think you should take the rest of the day off, you’re going to have to choke down that screwdriver before people think you’ve lost your edge. You’re going to have to slow-drink a beer to make it look like you can still hang. And yeah, you may have to sneak into the bathroom and just sit down on the toilet to get some quiet time. But when the going gets tough, the tough get going. You have to set yourself apart and play your position. Every team is only as strong as their weakest link and you can’t possibly let that link be you because that’s just not how you were raised.
Sure, some pre-Sunday Scaries are going to creep in at some point. “Work is going to suck” and “This is going to result in a two-day hangover because my body is no longer made for long weekends” will echo through your brain when you’re sitting at a dining room table unsure if you can last anywhere past 11 o’clock. People are going to see you giving yourself some double-handed face wipes, and someone’s going to ask, “How ya doin’, man?” in a condescending tone insinuating that you can’t hang anymore.
The fact of the matter is, you can. See, when your parents reflect on their “glory days,” they’re not thinking of the times they went to bed early or were psyched because they got in that 7 a.m. run on on Sunday after taking it easy the night before. They’re not patting themselves on the back for taking a weekend off in order to clean up their apartment and sort through clothes to donate. They’re thinking about long weekends at the lake and country drives where the roadies were flowin’. There’s a reason they look at you with a smile when they see you surrounded by all your buddies at a wedding or long weekend home. They remember what it felt like to be invincible, and now they see it in you.
After all, there’s a limited window in which you’re actually allowed to get after it with very few repercussions. And at our age, yeah, that window is about to get slammed shut. Once you start transitioning from your late 20s to your mid-30s, people are going to start talking if they see you out with glazed over eyes trying to figure out where your debit card is. You’re going to be forced into being a shell of your former self. Your wife, your kids, your career. They won’t lend themselves to going on a bender for the ages. You’re only going to have one or two weekends a year where you can crack some cold ones after getting the band back together, but those other fifty weekends? Nah, you’ll have too many responsibilities.
The time is now. Ride the wave. .
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