Saturday night, I participated in my 4th Pre-Patty’s Pub Crawl. Year after year, the best friend and I get decked out in green costume-y junk, load up on a party bus full of strangers, and excessively drink to celebrate the holiday that is a week away. This year, like years before, was filled with jello shots, girls dancing on stripper poles, and attempting to forget your troubles by drinking too much while ignoring the fact that you are maybe too old for this. But when Sunday morning came, despite the hangover and anger at Daylight Savings Time, I realized that there are actually a couple of real life lessons that I’ve learned throughout my years of bar crawls.
Networking has no time or place. We’ve all heard the phrase that it’s not what you know, but who you know that matters. And a bar crawl gives you ample opportunity to chat it up with someone you may not have otherwise come in contact with. Whether it’s bonding over your love of a certain song, realizing that the guy who offered to buy you a drink is from your hometown, or bitching to the girl next to you in the bathroom line about the hours you’ve been waiting to pee, the chances to expand your network are endless.
Along with the discovery that I managed to NOT spend all the cash I had that night, I also found a dude’s business card in my jeans pocket Sunday morning. Now, do I remember who gave it to me or what our topic of conversation was? No, no I do not. But that’s beside the point. I know that Drunk Me was chatting it up and making real world connections that could potentially benefit me in the future. Assuming I need something from a printing company.
Mistakes are inevitable. As cliché as it sounds, things aren’t going to always be perfect. And that’s okay. Every year, we swear we aren’t going to run late and that we are going to show up early enough to pre-game at the starting bar. Every year, we fail. This year, we even got so concerned about our time frame that we didn’t realize that we forgot the cooler until we were purchasing the alcohol to take with us on the bus. Oops. We may have looked like bums holding our bags of drinks, but at least we didn’t then leave the cooler on the bus afterwards! Which may or may not have happened on a previous occasion.
Someone will lose their credit card, someone’s phone will die, or someone will get kicked out of the bar for being too drunk and falling down. Shit happens. Laugh it off, go dance, and enjoy the fact that you now have a nice addition to your drunken recap of the night for brunch tomorrow.
Surround yourself with people who have your back. A night of drinking and debauchery will either solidify that your friends are awesome or weed out the trash that you need to get rid of. You want someone who will hold your hair back when you puke because you decided that half a bottle of vodka was the perfect in between bar beverage. This is the type of person who will join you in your vendetta against the douchebag that shoved you on the dance floor and smashed your foot in the process.
This is not the place for the flaky friend who is nowhere to be found when shit goes down because they are too busy hitting on the wasted girl in the corner. You don’t need that kind of negativity in your life. This friend will still hang out with you even after you force the group to stop because you couldn’t hold it and decided you needed to pee in an alley. These are the kinds of people that you want and need in your life, and not only on a rowdy night out. Just return the favor and you are golden.
Of course, there are many more tiny things I’ve learned along the drunken way.
I know that if you don’t befriend the guy with the light up glasses and giant hat, you need to reevaluate because your selfie game will regret it. Ordering two shots at a time seems great in theory until you try and do this at every stop on your route because that shit catches up quick. Let the old guy who is a regular at the dive bar dance with you because you are in his home and he will repay you with drinks.
I may use bar crawls as an occasional escape from the humdrum of the everyday, but in the end and despite their outward appearances, I think they’ve really made me a better person. .
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