Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Day 314: limited thinking.

Today I read something annoying in the news. It said that 1.4 million Australians drink just to feel normal, either socially or mentally. But that wasn't the annoying bit. What was annoying were some of the comments from readers. While some readers shared the fact that they weren't drinkers, and some of the good reasons why, others were quick to respond with derogatory judgements of "part-pooper" and "buzz-killer" and accusations of sober people leading boring lives. I've commented on this before, but I am still very much of the opinion that if your life is boring without alcohol then the fact of the matter is you are, quite simply, leading a boring life. The alcohol so many people feel the need to imbibe so often isn't an interestingness elixir. It simply fuzzies the brain so you don't notice so acutely how boring your life actually is. Alcohol is a great relaxant and mood enhancer, but it doesn't magically make your life something it isn't. And frankly, if alcohol is all you're bringing to the table as your offering of entertainment or a good time, I'd rather dine alone.


  1. Hmm,
    Having given up the booze in January I can relate to your existential enlightenments. Drink makes boring things, be they people, places, tv or entire lives, seem more interesting. Going without makes you have to take stock of what you do and work out what is actually interesting or enjoyable, and makes you become aware of what’s just a trick of the magic vino-spectacles. It’s a good way to filter the waste out and aspire to fill it with more meaningful stuff.
    If anyone says boring - what do they know? Tell them to try it for themselves. They’ll probably shudder at the thought of socialising without assistance, or examining themselves in an un-tainted mirror.
    But booze can unlock the door to lots of adventures, staying up all night talking to new best friends, waking up not knowing who the person lying next to you is, being the best dancer in the room...
    It’s give and take.
    Whether you go back to the olden days and go wreckless doesn’t really matter, at least you can say you know what you like, and the rest of them, they’ll just carry on liking what they know.

  2. Hello Claire.

    I follow your blog as I'm battling my excessive partying at the moment too.

    You mentioned a few months back you had a bottle of non alcoholic red - where did you get it from? Was it good?

    Cheers, s

  3. Hey Strange Narny. The best ones I tried were both by Ariel (from the Nappa Valley, California). The red was a Cabernet Sauvignon, and apart from having a slightly grape juiceish after taste was really quite convincing. Their Blanc was good too, but their Chardonnay was awful (watery and bitter and yuck). You can buy them singly or by the case at
    And yes Jamie, you do (as usual) make some very good points. For me it's the ignorant, confident jeering I find angering. The less informed always seem to shout louder I find. It annoys me that those who are brave and open-minded enough to try a different approach must suffer the taunts of the stunted and less enlightened. But that's often how things go I suppose.

  4. I've been on both sides of the fence. Probably most normal people following this blog interested in their own drinking have. But I tell you, the perspective I'm seeing now is really changing my perception of drinking, and drunks. It is not pretty. You are not better looking drunk. You are not wittier, even though you laugh at your own jokes. You do not dance better. Often enough, you are a disgrace. At least by the time the witching hour arrives, and you have been on it for 3 or 4 hours, you are drunken mess, whether or not you realise it. Conversations mean nothing. Words are slurred. Some men get aggressive or obnoxious. Some women cry. It is not how I remember it - not at all.

    And it gets much less cool as you get older. Ever seen your mum so pissed she can't speak properly, blubbers, shags a random, and vomits in the sink? You wouldn't want to. And there is no difference.

    But, having said that, Jamie's point about doing some crazy ass shit on the turps is true. I've had my wildest outings drunk, including with the ladies. From a man's perspective anyway, if you don't tend to hit it then often the lady you are with doesn't either, and perhaps her inhibitions are not as cut as they would be if you were drinking (which combined with your dutch courage can really go places).

    I see the good things about drinking that I am missing - and there are many - as collateral damage to a greater war to improve my quality of life (including my fitness). For many, this sacrifice would not be worth it and I'm no holier than any of those people. I think there is no right or wrong with drinking. But not drinking is a choice, and it is the right one for me at this time as I'm on a year long fitness campaign.

    People who are really down on you making that choice do really irritate, even though chanting "join us" is the natural reaction of a piss head (which I can say with some authority).