I drink too much. A typical week might include only one or two nights where I don’t have at least a drink. A typical weekend consists of multiple nights out or drinking until 3 or 4, followed by one or two weekly days that are lost almost entirely to the Gods of Hangover. (All of this is only aided by the fact that my current weekends are four days long.) Trying to count how many drinks I have on a big night would be an exercise in futility. My ability to handle alcohol has been cauterized by years of living in Korea and performing in bars. Bars happen to be the main place that I not only socialize, but also do comedy. The hill up to my place is lined with watering holes, several of which are open all night and their refreshing Cass and friendly staff are just so inviting before I make the final steep ascent to my house. Suffice to say, I’m at bars a lot. By any healthy scale, I drink too much.
All of this being said, I am a functioning adult human man who enjoys life and the people around me. I have healthy relationships with many wonderful people, have been able to hold steady jobs over the years, and my dashing good looks are surpassed only by my undeniable affability. I love spending time at my bars. One of my favorite things is being a regular at a place where I know and appreciate the bartenders, and I like to think the opposite is true. Drinking, getting drunk, and losing an inhibition or two are highly enjoyable activities. The social aspect of spending time with other people who are experiencing something similar to what I am makes life interesting and worthwhile. Buying drinks for other people is one of life’s great joys. I don’t think my relationship with alcohol is entirely unhealthy. But like every relationship, it could use some work.
That’s why I’m taking this month off from drinking. Drinking and I need a break. Don’t worry, though, Drinking and I will see each other again in February, in time for the Super Bowl and houseguests and being alone on Valentine’s Day. Whether or not temporarily giving up booze seems like a big deal to you, it kind of is to me. I’ve never done it before, in part because I thought not only that I didn’t need to, but because I thought it would be a cinch to do. Well, I guess it’s time to put my money where my beer goes.
So here’s the plan: I’m not gonna drink for the month of January. How many days is that? I consulted a calendar, and it says 31. Actually, I lied. I didn’t consult a calendar. If we’re going to be friends, we need to be honest. There’s going to be a lot of honesty in this narcissistic online record keeping system. It’s going to involve me talking about things that I’m not good at, or that I’ve failed at, and some of the topics may be sensitive in nature. If you’d prefer to keep that image of me in your head as a perfect man of everyone’s dreams, then I suggest you don’t read this any further. It’ll be me, warts and all.
After January, I’m going to be giving up something else for the month of February. Maybe it’ll be eating meat, or wearing pants, or listening to Hoobastank, but it’ll be something. I kind of got this idea from my wonderful friend and roommate, Jeff, who had a similar idea but never did it so I’m stealing it. Resolutions are kind of lame, but I do like to try to make myself a better human being, and drinking less (none) will improve my creativity levels (I hope). Also, months are a good unit of time. They’re effective time markers, and they go by quickly. I went on a first date with a young lady recently who would only be in town for a month, and our connection was positively delightful. Immediately striking conversation, lots of laughs, same favorite book. I was smitten. As we laughed, I looked her in the eyes and said, “Will you be my girlfriend for a month?” She didn’t answer, but we ended up dancing and making out all night. I asked her about my question on our next date, and she looked up at me and said, “A month is a long time.” I laughed, because I’m pretty sure a month is the smallest unit of time imaginable. They pass in the blink of an eye. A month is, however, enough time to make a change, or to improve something, but not enough time to go too crazy if it’s the worst thing in the world.
I’m going to update regularly, at least a few times a week, about a variety of topics related to drinking (or not drinking), how I’m doing with it, how I’m feeling, the ways drinking has negatively impacted my body, mind, love life, comedy and drinking, nights out in Korea, as well as the things I like about drinking because – let’s be honest – drinking is a blast. Maybe you might just get a few chuckles from this, maybe it’ll spark a new thought or two, maybe it might inspire you to do something new. I’d love it if other people wanted to join in and not drink or not do other stuff together. Not doing stuff together is fun. As they say, misery loves not drinking vodka together.
I’m looking forward to this. I’m also not. But I am.
Oh, and that girl was definitely not my girlfriend for a month. She ended up choosing a young swarthy Frenchman over me. Then she left and I mailed her some books. Duh.
Happy New Year, you lovely weirdos!