Daily Archives: August 1, 2010

On drinking.

T-Pain might blame it on the a-al-a-al-a-alcohol, but we all know the truth: getting buzzed, tipsy, drunk, trashed or otherwise intoxicated is, never has been, and never will be an excuse for “uncharacteristic” acts.

To clarify: it does not cause the imbiber to do something he or she would never otherwise do. It only lessens the personal inhibitions against engaging in a particular behavior. There’s a reason the stuff is called a “social lubricant” or “liquid courage.”

Am I in the minority here? Maybe, but this is my story and to it I shall remain sticked.

Want an example? I’ll give you one, full disclosure: Say I’m in a bar. A nasty, dirty, townie bar full of dirty, nasty townies. The bartender has mixed me my severalth Mr. Pibb and vodka (am I the only one who orders this drink at this bar? Could very well be) and I spot a dude with whom I need to make a connection. Like, must. Were I to be sober, the thought that would cross my mind might go something like “Hey, that guy looks interesting. What’s his story?” Drunk me has the same thought, only it kind of glides across my dura mater, bypassing the part of my brain that might more coherently form such neural connections. To shit-faced me, the thought comes across something like “Dude that guy over there is hot! And I like his hat! What his story is? I like his hat.”

Sober me finishes her drink, continues chatting with her friends, possibly points out Hat Guy, maybe smiles at Hat Guy, and will engage in conversation with Hat Guy if we happen to be at the bar at the same time, or maybe waiting in line at the jukebox together, et cetera, et cetera. The acknowledgment of Hat Guy’s presence, the potential for conversation or, more likely, the hypothetical backstory that my friends and I create is enough to quench that particular impulse.

Drunk me will finish her drink, order another, and proceed with her cold open: walking straight over to Hat Guy and striking up a conversation about the first thing that slowly flickers inside her head. It could be the state of the nachos he is eating, the logo on his shirt, the smell of the bar or the availability of the shuffleboard table. It does not matter, because with this verbal exchange I will have satisfied that original impulse within my brain.

Two different scenarios, just viewed within disparate lenses. Think of one as the correct prescription and the other as a pair of Walgreen’s readers.

So while the drinking might make Shorty feel loose, she’s not suddenly thinking and processing with someone else’s brain. To blame it on the alcohol, and mean it, is essentially bullshit.

sotd 08.01.10

A favorite from my favorite artist: What a sweet little song. Also, more charming in lo-fi.

“Thirteen” / Elliott Smith (2005)