There’s no easing into this. I’ve got a good buddy that I’ve known since college, and I firmly believe he’s a power drinker. A rational human being one minute, and then a tsunami of aggressive choices the next. His engine has no governor. It’s as if the regulating agency that oversaw his mind and body disbanded and is now being run by a group of late 18th century laissez-faire capitalists. It’s as remarkable as it is frightening, and it’s really putting me in a tough spot because I really can’t hang anymore.
It sounds selfish to say that, but hear me out. This guy, with his 0-100 drinking strategy, is an integral part of the social team. Some say he even created our group text, but there’s really no way of knowing whether or not that’s true. What is absolutely true, however, is that his ability to power drink in situations that are in no way power drinking situations is making all of us look bad. And feel bad. Mainly feel bad.
Take last Wednesday night for example. We had a very solid crew assembled for our friend Matt’s birthday dinner (he’s not the power drinker). You may remember that name from his hilariously large t-shirt. Dude loves huge shirts.
Now, things were going well at first. ‘Jitas were sizzling, house margs with lightly salted rims were going down at a respectable pace for a weeknight, and I’m fairly certain our waitress hated us. Perfect night. But as I looked over to ask my buddy to pass the fully filled and unclaimed cup of salsa near him, I noticed something- my man was power drinking.
With his eyes closed and lips planted on the straw, he was absolutely wrecking what was left of his Mexican Martini. But why? There was no reason for it. It made no sense. It wasn’t even his birthday. You may be thinking, “Let the dude get a buzz, man,” and if you are, I completely respect that line of thinking. Believe me, the last thing I want to do is get involved in someone’s business. But I’m telling you, it’s a powder keg.
We ended up at some high-end craft cocktail bar with a group of Aussie bros that were completely void of any responsibility until 2 a.m. No clue who those guys were. You just can’t do that on a Wednesday night, but we did.
With him, going to another bar is not a question, it’s a given. Throwing back a car bomb is not an option, it’s a threshold beverage for any night out. He’s either going hard, or not going at all. To say he has no chill would be a hilarious understatement. For months, I’ve tried to roll with the flow, Mark Chestnutt style, but I’m finally at the point where I think I need to say something.
This is a delicate subject, because questioning another man’s drinking strategy is going to stir up a hornet’s nest. Honestly, who am I to judge? I’m an adult, and if I don’t like it, I can just stay home. That all makes sense, but I’ve never been the type of guy to bail, even if I know it’ll have me struggling the next morning. Plus, what if I go home and they run into McConaughey at some dive bar or something?.
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