I’m terrified that I’m a dickhead. That I’m hurtling towards absolute confirmation that I’m beyond a simple bit of a nob. I’m feeling anxious, because I’ve made a declaration to those closest to me, and now you, Internet, that will possibly remove all doubt as to where, exactly, I place on the international scale of all right to Kayne West.
I’ve given up drinking. Like, forever.
I KNOW. I just… I know. I know how it sounds. First I kicked the fags, then I dabbled in celibacy, and then I went to Atheist Church. Is it any coincidence, I ask myself, that now I’m looking to ditch the booze? I know not the answer.
But, what I do know is that last Friday I had a bloody brilliant day- the kind of day where you spend half the time having the brilliant day, and the rest of it running an internal monologue that goes, Phwoar. This is a bit brill. It’s dead good. I like this. I feel proper happy. Yeah, belter. FUCK YES! I LOVE BEING ALIVE! !!!!!!!! !!!!!!! !!!!!! !!!!!!
I felt so good that I figured yeah- I’ll have a glass of wine to celebrate life, on the balcony, stolen cigarette in hand and sunshine on my satisfied face. And then I felt even better, so I drank more wine. And then I sort of polished off the bottle, because I don’t have an off button, and instead of continuing my brilliant day into the evening and squeezing every single last drop of amazing out of every last second because more is always better, I had to go to bed because I was drunk. At 9 p.m. At home.
A few weekends previously, I’d had a two-day hangover that was so crippling I slept away most of the weekend. I hadn’t gone at it large the night before. I’d been at my mate’s house, just chatting and supping. But that cheap red stuff we necked- it killed me. I was immobile, and not even in the good way. I just felt a bit sad and lonely and like I’d screwed up. Again.
Since I’ve come to London I drink most nights of the week. I’m out for most of them, and so when I meet a friend for a catch-up after work, it’s normally in a bar. So I have a drink. And then maybe another one. And another? Every night.
At the end of March I decided I’d not only do Sober April, but I’d drink one thing and one thing only: water. My body was asking me to. I was committing the ultimate sin; I was treating my body without any semblance of respect. I was poisoning her every night, and compensating with coffee and carbs by day, wondering why the feelings of sluggish malcontent seemed to be increasingly difficult to conquer.
April arrived, and I was to be sober throughout.
On April the third I went to the pub.
‘What you having?’ the barmaid asked me.
‘Aperol Spritz,’ I said.
She set the drink down in front of me. Oh, I thought to myself. I forgot that that wasn’t water.
I lasted a few more days until my friend had a dinner when there was Prosecco. Because I allowed myself one glass I had another. The food came out, and it tasted so much better with the red wine, and then there was dessert wine, and then everything was so.much.fun and then a bit blurry and then the night bus home and zzzzz. Failure.
I couldn’t not drink when I went to all-you-can-eat brunch, and then I had all of those strangers to my apartment for dinner and was what I supposed to do? Offer them juice?
By mid-April I’d accepted the defeat that alcohol was, in fact, my very best friend, and so book club and goodbye drinks at work saw me drink a little bit, and then a lot, and then I got that hangover and the post drink blues. I HATE THE POST DRINK BLUES. When it’s daytime and I’m sober and life is brilliant the monologue of my imagination is exclamation point after exclamation point. When I’m hungover my monologue is: hold me. I’m scared.
OBVIOUSLY, then, because hi, we’ve met, and my default setting is deep meta analysis humps Boy Meets World, I’ve done thinking about whether this perpetual pattern of bad behaviour and repentance is worth the effort it takes to feel miserable about it, and I’ve decided that no. No it isn’t. I fucking adore drinking, but hate hangovers. And so? I’ll stop drinking.
Except, that seems really dull, and I’m worried what everyone will think. Because people who don’t drink are self-righteous dickheads, right?
Wrong. I’ll still totally flash my tits at you.
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