This past weekend, I became the person that I most hate; the guy who drinks in moderation. Due to a combination of a cold I’ve been fighting off and an attempt to decrease my calorie intake before my upcoming vacation, I decided to attempt what I’ve never attempted before. I was going to go out, partake in four adult beverages, and coast on a mild buzz until I went home. Those who know me know how strange and rare this behavior is. I am not a person who half-asses things. I get double meat on my Chipotle order, I have been made to “go outside and cool off” at several board-game nights, and I drink to get drunk. I whole-ass things, if you will.
I have often questioned whether my “all or nothing” attitude was the best way to go through life, so I was actually pretty excited to have a nice adult weekend of drinking in moderation. I was expecting to be pleasantly surprised by how much fun I could have when I could remember every one of my conversations and didn’t have to delete all my texts the morning after in a desperate attempt to regain blissful ignorance.
However, that optimism quickly drained after the last 48 hours. All my weekend did was reinforce my beliefs that drinking responsibly is boring as fuck. Sure, I remember every conversation I had, but I wish I didn’t because they were about as interesting as going to the fucking aquarium. (I don’t know how aquarium owners have managed to convince society that watching fish swim in a circle is worth spending money on, but I respect their marketing game). My conversations covered an array of topics, including football, relationships, the stock market, politics, and for reasons I’m still unsure of, baby names. These are good topics and things I like to talk about, and yet, I had nothing exciting to say. Gone were my fiery hot takes about how Russell Wilson is the most boring man in the entire history of professional sports. At no point did I feel the need to tell a rambling, sexually explicit, wildly inappropriate story about a failed Hinge date. Hell, while discussing politics I actually uttered the phrase “I don’t know enough about that, I’d have to research that and get back to you,” rather than drunkenly yelling made-up “facts” until I got my point across. Instead, all I did was have a pleasant, drama-free evening with my friends, went home at midnight, and slept like a baby.
I don’t know about you, but that just doesn’t cut it for me. I’m a man of excitement; always seeking new experiences, lusting after the unknown. And nothing is more unknown than a blackout. My weekend life, much like many of yours, follows a cyclical pattern of meeting up with the same friends and going out to the same bars. The x-factor, the thing that makes every night unique and exciting, is copious amounts of alcohol. Sure, I might be at the exact same bar I was at last Friday night with the exact same people, but when you’ve been hammering beers since happy hour, everything feels different. Anything could happen when you’re drunk. You could end up going home with that girl who’s been eyeing you from the other end of the bar. You could end up in a fight with the boyfriend of that girl who’s been eyeing you from the other end of the bar. You could end up going home with the girl who’s eyeing you from the other end of the bar, and her boyfriend, culminating in disturbing threesome that your friends roast you about for the rest of their lives. Who knows? It’s like a choose-your-own-adventure book, but none of the choices are good ones, and you black out before you read the last page.
And yes, while drinking responsibly allows you to wake up on Sunday mornings without a splitting headache or a sense of impending doom, it also means you wake up with no stories. People who drink three IPAs and go to bed before midnight might have their life together, but what kind of a life is it? When you’re 80-years-old and stuck in a nursing home that your grandkids hardly ever visit, will you look back fondly on the night where you had three glasses of Chardonnay and fell asleep watching a Netflix documentary? No, you’ll remember that time where you ran from AK-47-armed members of the Mexican police through the seediest alleys in Cabo, clad only in flip-flops and a basketball jersey. To quote Montgomery Gentry, “That’s a life you can hang your hat on.”
So while drinking responsibly was a fun change of pace, next weekend, I’m going back to my roots. I’m returning to a life of taking too many shots, making bad decisions, talking shit to people much larger than I am, hitting on girls much more attractive than I am, and generally making an ass out of myself. Good choices are for people in their 30s, and I’ve still got five strong years of irresponsible drinking. The weekend can’t get here soon enough. .