To drink or not to drink: Staying sober

Published January 29, 2013, in MSUM’s, The Advocate

Not-So-Friendly Acquaintances
Alcohol and I don’t get along. I have said a few words to it in passing at social gatherings a handful of times in the past, but it never agrees with me. It’s so opinionated. You’d think a columnist would like that it’s opinionated. Well, I don’t. It always tries to change you and always succeeds if you’re hanging out a moment too long.

Entertaining Excuses
Alcohol is the main means of entertainment in this town (and most others). Many blame their initial introduction to it on small-town living or the cold.

“There’s nothing to do.”

“I hate the winter. It’s too cold to drink outside by the lake. Let’s leave our jackets in the car so we don’t have to carry them around, walk downtown and barhop, wear skimpy clothes and get drunk. If we’re drunk, we won’t realize how cold we are and that we should be wearing jackets – and pants.”

Coming from one who’d only tried a sip here and there of other’s drinks, made a face and moved on until the legal age of 21, I find that excuse completely moronic. Don’t be such a simpleton.

Go dance at the VFW if you’re that bored. Every small town comes equipped with one of those.

Question and Answer
Q: But, Meghan, it makes me so much more fun! People use it to loosen up all the time. Why are you so dumb?

A: Let’s not resort to name-calling, please. Reader, do you really see how you’re acting from another’s point of view?

NEWSFLASH: Often, how others perceive us is much different than we assume. While you may be thinking alcohol is making you outgoing and entertaining, someone else is thinking you’re a blubbering idiot.

Q: But, Meghan, aren’t we supposed to just be ourselves and not care what others are thinking about us? Who cares what others think about me when I’m having fun. It’s my life and I can ****ing act how I want to!

A: Exactly. Then you should be yourself without the aid of an action-altering substance and won’t have a problem wondering whether or not others think you’re fun. Voila. Problem solved.

If you’re really as boring as you think you are when you aren’t intoxicated, there are larger issues at hand. Staying sober gives us a great opportunity to work on social skills, or lack thereof.

Having a Drink Here or There
If you have a drink every once in a while, who cares, unless you actually realize how alcohol is infested with yeast, sugar, and, usually, wheat (don’t even get me started on a health tangent). Your incentive for drinking should be because you think it tastes good in moderation, not because you want to alter your personality and turn into a drunk.

Yuck.

I can tell you this much: Ne’er have I found a man irresistibly charming when he’s hitting on me with glazed eyes and stumbling over his own feet.

Yes, I do realize that 98 percent of the Fargo-Moorhead population won’t like this column. I’m starting to feel a little uneasy. Somebody get me a drink (just kidding).

BY MEGHAN FEIR

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