I don’t make it out every Friday night like I used to. Early tee times, work, and exhaustion often keep me in. While it was once extremely frowned upon to stay in on the weekend, now it’s a badge of honor. Every so often, rather than get to bed early or meet up with the #squad, I’ll partake in one of my favorite events: tying one on at home by myself.
I can remember sitting there at 24 years old with the sweet bird of youth on my shoulder and thinking, “I’m drinking alone — what a loser.” Any inclination I had about diving head first into a bottle of Woodford was soon overtaken by the fear of doing something depressing. FOMO and alcohol is a dangerous combination, but once you learn to embrace it, you can go on to achieve great things.
Through trial and error, I’ve assembled a pragmatic guide for those who wish to partake in the timeless tradition of drinking alone on the weekend without feeling like a loser.
Man the grill…or the stove.
I’ve found that the key to having a spiritual awakening while going lone wolf is to start things off with a respectable man meal. Cooking a meal yourself is always a self-satisfying way to get the good vibes flowing, and taking a shot at a somewhat intricate home cooked meal will help balance out the sadness you’re feeling as you watch Periscopes of your friends tearing up the dance floor at a wedding you weren’t invited to.
For me, my go-to is steak, because that’s what a man does. A man eats steak. It’s a little tricky, as the city of Austin does not allow me to grill on my first floor apartment balcony. But it takes more than some un-American yet totally sensical laws to keep your boy from a ribeye. You can do wonders with a skillet, butter, salt and pepper, and medium heat. Don’t turn that dial beyond medium heat, or you’ll be the drunk butthead frantically opening all the doors and windows praying that the fire department doesn’t show up.
Go off the grid.
It’s important that you embrace the solitude. Decompress. Keep that iPhone 5 switched to silent, and only glance over at it during commercials. Unless you’re the ultimate wild child, you don’t have to go airplane mode. You never know when you’ll get a late night “what r u doing” text from that tall drink of water you used to see in college, or a “hey i’m about to go to jail” text from Todd. Just because you’re staying in doesn’t mean you’re not on call.
This piece of literary gold started out as “What Your Drink Of Choice When You’re Sitting At Home Drinking Alone Says About You,” but I like helping people, and this felt like a better way to give back to the community. With that being said, you need to choose your companion for the evening carefully.
If your poison of choice is beer, I highly recommend mixing it up and stepping outside of your comfort zone. At risk of being labeled a communist, I recommend trying some local craft beers, or something that may normally be out of your price range. The goal here is to create the illusion of a special occasion to balance out the fact that you’re probably just sitting there re-watching Walking Dead or something. But if cracking open a Keystone tallboy is what your heart desires, then do you.
Personally, I like to get creative. A few weeks back, I got a wild hair and ended up dropping thirty bucks on old fashioned ingredients. It was fantastic. I felt like I had really accomplished something. Did I end up just drinking Maker’s on ice after only 2 old fashioneds because I’m a lazy piece of trash? Sure. Did I buy an unnecessary amount of oranges that I had to throw away a week later? I did. Will I ever use the bottle of bitters I purchased? Doubtful. But for a while there, I was eating steak and drinking cocktails, and it was glorious.
I bet you love #sports. I know I do. Yeah, big sports fan here. Right now, we are in prime stay home and watch a ballgame time. For me, it’s all about America’s pastime. That’s gonna knock out roughly 3 hours of your night, and if anyone questions you, they can’t rag on you for watching a ballgame. “Just stayed in and watched a ballgame.” There’s nothing sad about that. Sounds pretty awesome if you ask me.
Crank some tunes.
After the game’s over, you need to keep the party alive. Not like a Ray Velcoro after a long day party, but more like you pouring one more stout bourbon drink and firing up a playlist. Because you’re not looking to get #tooturnt, you should probably avoid anything that goes too hard. Save Drake for your headphones at the office, because this night will be all about the classics. Seger, Squier, Waylon, Haggard, etc. You’re probably going to dim the lights and start thinking about old flames, or your old dog, so expect to shed a few tears. There’s no shame in that. It’s healthy..
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