I’m tired. I don’t have the money. I can still have a good time without drinking! If I ever say any of those three sentences then I know I’m in for an absolutely terrible night. I’m talking, ‘bumping into your Dad at the clinic,’ terrible. Being the most sober person in a bar filled with drunks is hard enough. You aren’t six beers deep, so you can’t block out the puke in the urinal, the girl crying because the DJ won’t play any Carrie Underwood, or the guy you recognize from To Catch a Predator. And even worse, you start to notice things you hate about your friends. Specifically… you hate your friends. The first thing you notice is just how many daps and handshakes they give each other when they’re drunk. The people you associate with are fist-bumping, high-fiving, and knuckle-wrestling so often that the lounge at Cabo Cantina looks like the opening scene in 8 Mile. Then you realize that no one you know has ever had something original or intelligent to say. It turns out that you guys talk about the same three subjects every single time you get together for a beer.
1. The last time you guys got together for a beer. 2. How poorly your favorite sports team is doing. 3. Hushed conversation about Kate’s abortion. That’s it! Those are the only things that drunkards have the capacity to talk about! So if you’re not slurring about sports, stories, or the personal tragedies of others, you’re probably singing. Which brings us to our next problem. Singing. Think about the songs and artists you hate the most. I’m imagining Biz Markie, Bryan Adams, and Journey rank pretty high up there. But they come on while you’re blowing a .20 and all of a sudden you’re happier than Amanda Knox in a fetish shop. What’s worse, I discovered I have exactly twelve friends that know every word to The Great Divide by Creed, sing all the backup vocals, and don’t realize that the prior two statements should get them waterboarded by that same guy from To Catch a Predator. But the singing doesn’t even come close to the decision-making. I’d rather head to a Tea Party caucus with Chaz Bono than an after-party with a group of drunk 20-year-olds.
Why is it that my roommate, who can only afford to buy Dollar Store ‘Fingers Crossed’ condoms, will spend 150 dollars on a bar tab and forty dollars on cover? Why do my college buddies light picnic tables on fire with grain alcohol and Black & Mild’s? And why did everyone I’m with just insist that we go to an after-hours bar called Freak City that only serves eight-dollar PBR out of a solo cup? When you’re sober, there is no reasonable answer. When you’re drunk, there doesn’t need to be. Despite all of that bullshit, I think I could make it through a Mormon evening if it wasn’t for one thing… talking to girls in bars. Girls are mean. Drunk girls are mean AND stupid. If you don’t have a solid padding of liquid courage, you’re going to strike out harder than a homeless guy at a strip club. Of course, striking out doesn’t matter when I’m too drunk to realize that the girl I’m talking to would rather be covered in millipedes than kiss me on the cheek and hasn’t stopped talking about the first time she threw up in a hot tub. But when I’m sober, all I think about his how my neck disappears into my chin, my shirts never fit right, and why exactly I would want to have an inaudible 20-minute conversation about her first semester at community college.
Yes, my friends, it turns out that staying sober can ruin every part of your night. So next weekend I’ll be taking that extra shot, spouting ignorant slurs at my cab driver, and making my girlfriend cry at least four times. Because really, it’s better than the alternative.
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