Booze and Peppermint

Call me dry and stick me in a nunnery for what I am about to say. I do not think drinking is all it’s cracked up to be. For the most part, alcoholic drinks taste like shit. The hangover bloody sucks. And blacking out is scary as hell. Why people live for nights out and brag about how drunk they get is beyond me. We all know alcohol is bad for your health, and addiction can tear families apart. Yet drinking is still a popular activity ingrained into our culture. Us Irish are known for our drinking habits and maybe there is some truth to that stereotype. My name is Marian and I am not an alcoholic.

If you have read this far and don’t hate me already then let me reestablish some of my credibility. I’m not a pioneer. I do drink and I do go on nights out. I have no problem enjoying a glass of wine with dinner or a bottle of beer on a sunny day. My issue is with society’s attitude to drinking. The fact that I’m almost apologising and trying to convince you that I do drink just goes to show the link between alcohol and social status. The more you drink the more fun you are. 

Alcohol and Status

This leads to a popularity contest for no one wants to be the freak in the class. There is a peer pressure to join in. If everyone is drinking then you don’t want to be the odd one out. Even if you are strong minded enough to evade such pressures then you almost always are asked why you aren’t drinking. Because there obviously must be some valid reason for doing such an obscure thing. It could never be by choice – no way, that would be insane. If you are a man you have to say it is because of the antibiotics the doctor gave you. There is the other option of saying you’re pregnant but you may get some queer looks if you have both a penis and a foetus.

Why at all do we need to make excuses for not drinking? Surely I am not the only one who sees this as toxic behaviour?

The pint is it's cool. My point is it's not.

Drinking Culture

Some people consider socialising a hobby. Ask them what they do in their free time. They will say that they spend hours getting shit-faced with friends but stick a label on it and call it “socialising”. It’s sad to see that a group of friends can’t hang out without the crutch of a drink. It is true that drinking gives you a confidence you may be without when sober. In truth, the alcohol just breaks down that sensible filter in your brain until you’ve lost all inhibitions. It is nice to be free and confident, and just blame it on the alcohol when shit hits the fan. But wouldn’t it be even nicer if we could all have that confidence without the aid of vodka?

You might ask what is wrong with enjoying a quiet pint to relax at the weekend? And of course, there’s nothing at all wrong with casual drinking. If you want to get wasted now and again, hey I ain’t gonna condemn you. There is of course a bigger picture here and there are much worse aspects to alcohol than this. Alcoholism and addiction is unfortunately a common disease and you would be hard pressed to find a family who hasn’t been effected by this. But I’m not here to dwell on that side of alcohol. I only want to shed some light on day to day attitude drinking amongst my friends and peers.

Alcohol Booze and peppermint

I’m not saying we should all empty the whiskey bottles down the sink, renounce satan and pretend it’s Lent, I would just like the stigma around drinking to be removed. If your friend isn’t drinking on a night out don’t shame them into being no craic. If socialising is your main hobby then maybe find a new hobby. I hear knitting is great. And please don’t brag about how polluted you were last night. Not cool dude. Not cool at all. 

Always, M

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