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Stages of Inebriation

Posted on 23rd February 2010. One Comment

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Jo Gandon gives serious consideration to serious alcoholic beverage consumption…
“’But you don’t need alcohol to have a good time!’ says the sensible one in your group.  You know the one. She’s so organised she knows your timetable off by heart”
Is getting wasted just a waste of time or have you mastered getting plastered? The concept that it is OK to turn down a Quaddie in Klute is not one that I’m very well acquainted with. My worst enemy is the barman who says “You know, it would be so much cheaper with another shot of vodka in there,” and the next thing I know, I’m holding my seventeenth double vodka and cranberry in the middle of the dance floor proudly slamming it to the left and shaking it in all kinds of directions to the Spice Girls Medley. No wonder nobody wannabe my lover.
“But you don’t need alcohol to have a good time!” says the sensible one in your group.  You know the one. She’s so organised she knows your timetable off by heart,  she tells you to wrap up warm before heading out to the Science Site in the cold and she always manages to resist late-night chips at Dirty’s. In fact, she’s a bit like your Mum – except your Mum wouldn’t even step inside Dirty’s. I have never understood these mature types.  The only thing mature about me is the cheese in my fridge-which, by the way,  is starting to mould- but I seriously envy them when the hangover kicks in and it feels like there is a re-enactment of Hiroshima occurring inside my head.
“What happened last night?” you say to yourself, as you confusedly squint at your blurry reflection in the mirror:  your hair looking like that photo of your Mum from the 80s except with added residue from an Amaretto and Coke  sploshed over yourself during the period in the evening wherein you thought you were Beyonce. There are black flaky smudges of mascara all over your face because you forgot to take off your make-up before you went to bed. You look like an Emo and, to complete the look, you’re wearing your pyjamas inside out. Sexy. You should have stopped drinking at midnight, you think angrily to yourself, and then you would have been able to coordinate your outfit properly this morning. Instead, you’ve decided that harem pants and a hoodie would be entirely suitable for today’s lecture on ‘The Evolution of Social Systems’.
“You start to think everybody is attractive, even those that might be mistaken for
broccoli, or perhaps cauliflower,  in broad daylight.”
Speaking of Evolution, look around you next time you’re out and you’ll see the different stages of intoxication in every corner of the room. Firstly, you’ll notice The Sensible Drunk. This is when you are technically at the right level of drunkenness, or what your parents may call “merry”.  You are enjoying yourself. This is categorised by a collection of ‘c’ words – you are in control, confident and coherent.  You can still hear the lyrics to the songs being played and dance with adequate coordination to them. You can judge social situations properly and know, for instance, that it would be inappropriate to pinch the bottom of the 6 foot 4 rower in front of you or to do a handstand in the middle of the dancefloor…
Then, not too far away, you’ll find The Over-Confident Drunk. This is when you start to believe that everybody loves you and you love everybody. You start to think everybody is attractive, even those that might be mistaken for
broccoli, or perhaps cauliflower,  in broad daylight. Classic behaviour at this stage involves urges to touch people that you do not know, or checking yourself out in any reflective surface you can find, and in severe cases, experiencing an overwhelming need to draw attention to yourself by a series of inappropriate dance moves – most commonly, this involves getting as low to the ground as possible, hair “floofing” and gyrating around one of your friends as if they are an imaginary pole.
“And if water isn’t at hand, this is when The Destroyed Drunk comes out to play. This is fairly self-explanatory. ”
A couple more drinks down the line is The Emotional Drunk. This is the stage where you feel a sudden need to offload whatever comes into your head and hug people who you have just met, slurring that you really love them. But because you have already gone through Stage 2 (over-confidence), you have forgotten that it is inappropriate to do so on a night out and find yourself having deep meaningful conversations with anybody that will listen. You often find yourself spilling your drink all over yourself or other people when you are gesticulating. You become stubborn and do not listen to your friends when they try and shut you up. This tends to lead to tears for girls and fights for boys, though sometimes these are interchangeable – either way somebody needs to get them a glass of water.
And if water isn’t at hand, this is when The Destroyed Drunk comes out to play. This is fairly self-explanatory. You know you have reached this stage when you are hugging a toilet seat and you have a horrible taste in your mouth. You are exhausted, and your eyes are pretty much closed. The prospects of having a 9 o’clock the next morning make you want to lock yourself in the toilet cubicle forever – not so appealing if this happens to be in Klute. You won’t remember much of the evening and the next morning you feel like you spent most of the night banging your head against a concrete wall.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to tell you that drunkenness does not equate to hunky-ness. You only have to look around North Road at midnight: students falling out of club entrances and staggering towards the nearest chip shop, a complete transformation from their sober alter-egos. Before I go out at night, I make sure that not even a hair is out of place and I am looking as if I take some sort of pride in my appearance, yet the photos I have been tagged in on Facebook imply that I was on a Cave Girl-themed social.
Being teetotal is not a total waste of time, but getting wasted is. “Nothing in excess” means success!
Jo Gandon

One Comment »

  • Grim said:

    Fit article. If only I could take this wise advice to heart…