Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Absolut Brown and Thin

         My relationship with vodka started many years ago. I first met her when I was merely a teenager. I have Canada to thank for my early indoctrination into the realm of liquor. In my home country, the legal age to drink is only 19. I was so thin back then! It was only appropriate to celebrate my skeletal thin-ness with drinking heavily. And what better spirit to drink than a clear one with tasteless flavor. I love vodka because since I began my serious relationship with her so many years ago, she has truly never let me down. As I gingerly sit my Brown tukkus on this chair to write my blog, who do you suppose is sitting right next to me. That's right! A highball glass filled with ice cubes, a splash of 7up, two lime wedges, and a copious amount of Ketel One.

          I remember very clearly the first time I came into contact with alcohol of any kind. I was 7 years old. My Stepfather Luigi (he looks like the video game character) thought it would be funny to respond to my question "What is that?" with the answer "Apple juice" when clearly what was inside of that glass I was inquiring about was ultimately something atrocious, Molson Canadian. Molson is a hideous brand of beer that only toothless Canadian hockey players drink. The taste is so abhorred, it would probably turn Amy Winehouse sober. I, thinking it was apple juice, took a brisk swig and immediately spat it out all over the floor as though I had found out it was made with same poison that killed Romeo. It was awful! I couldn't believed I had been tricked so easily! I would never fall for that joke again! Or at least so I thought.....

      I think very fondly back to New Years Eve 1996. The moon was in full force as were the Spice Girls. It was such a tremendous year to think back on. I had lost over five teeth and my skin had never looked better. I was triumphant in all of my studies. I was on the honor roll and was the Blackest kid in the school. I clearly had accomplished some incredible achievements. I'm not sure where the rest of my family was (much of my childhood memory has been blocked out on account of my alcoholism) but for some reason it was just Princess Toadstool (my Mother) and I, alone in our large house in the Lower Mainland of British  Columbia. She poured herself a very humble glass of Chardonnay to get ready for the countdown. To make it clear, this was not a regular past time for Princess Toadstool. My Mother drank wine less often than I had regular bowel movements. I noticed there was a second glass on our living room table. "Would you like to try some?" she asked. "Sure!" I responded, clearly not remembering my first foul experience with an alcoholic beverage. Perhaps subconsciously I considered the fact that I was dealing with a different variety of alcohol. At least this time I was prepared for it. Without even a sniff, I took a deep breath and took a very large gulp of the white wine. I felt my face wince immediately after the swallow. Apparently being aware of the alcohol in the glass was no help in the consumption of such. I still was not sold. Happy New Year!

         Fast forward to six year later. As I approached the end of my eleventh grade, I found myself starting to become somewhat restless. I had many friends who were drinking, dating, smoking, stealing, destroying property, performing Bill Clinton-esque sexual favors and all sorts of other teenage foolishness. I knew I would have none of this. For some reason I was quite high on my pedestal of purity. I championed the idea of preserving my soul and body. I wasn't even religious! Clearly there was something wrong with me and time would only tell for when I would inevitably break away from my own rigidness. This rebellion came on an evening soon after I had broken up with the first person I had ever dated. It was on date number two that I was informed that this person was no longer interested in me. I was devastated. It just so happens that on that very night I was invited over to my friend's house for a little get together. This friend was wildly expressive and always a bold shining light in my life. For the purposes of this blog we'll call her Moulin Rouge. There were maybe five of us at her apartment. After some time venting, I really found myself falling into a deeper and deeper slump of depression. I clearly did not know how to handle this abrupt break-up probably on account of my never having to deal with something like that before coupled with my raging 16 year old hormones. Moulin quickly informed me that she had a delicious bottle of unopened red wine which she offered to me. Moulin would eventually regret this decision later. I poured myself my first glass. Similar to my first experiences with alcohol, I was mildly disgusted with my first few sips of the Merlot. But in my depressive state I continued to drown in my sorrows. After my second glass was finished, I believe this was the precise moment that my brain became detached from the rest of my body. I began violently running around the house mimicking noises that of a vaccuum cleaner and performing copious amounts of log rolls on the carpet floor. I must have been channeling Courtney Love at the time. After some prolonged continuation of reckless shenanigans I made my way back to the half empty/half full bottle of Merlot. At this point I felt no need to bother myself with a glass. I sucked right on that bottle like it was a damn pacifier.

           The rest of a night was a slight blur to me. I can't imagine why. The only thing worse than performing unmentionable and hideously disgusting activities is not much remembering said activities and having them instead retold to you by your friend the next morning.  What I do remember of the evening was making a few dizzy trips to the porch swaying back and forth like a willow tree only to fall asleep in a drunken stupor a few hours later. I blacked out at some point. I woke up this next morning passed out on Moulin's couch. Previously, I had heard of this very strange phenomena called the "hangover". Because this was my first experience drinking I could only imagine such an endeavour. Ultimately, this was in fact NOT my time to experience a hangover. It turns out that I had continued partying at Moulin's apartment until 4 in the morning when I ultimately crashed only to wake up as per my supposed instructions I had given to be woken up with alarm at 8am as to have ample time to sneak back into my bedroom and not be caught by Princess Toadstool. I found out that morning that when an inexperienced drinker consumes an entire bottle of wine and then sleeps only 4 hours that he will find himself awoken not hungover but rather STILL DRUNK. This was slightly bizarre to me. I felt I had self-inflicted paranoia. I thought I was going to have a panic attack. I gathered my belongings as fast as I could and began staggering my way out of the apartment. Just before I reached the door Moulin stopped me to inform me of the antics of the previous evening. Supposedly I had failed to remember (gee I wonder why) that I had vomited over her ENTIRE porch! I was completely appalled at myself. I couldn't believe I would ever engage in such an unattractive activity. However, I was slightly proud of myself for the fact that even in a drunken stupor I was able to keep my goal weight at the top of my priority list.

           As I sit here and stare at my empty highball glass, it boggles me that there was ever a time when I did not appreciate or understand how to consume alcohol. Now, it's a very natural thing that seems to fit in so easily like every tampon should. I can barely imagine what it was like to be so stupid and inexperienced to actually throw up on a friend's porch. How embarrassing! I KNOW my limit now! I can have up to 7  adult beverages of the vodka variety in a period of 6 hours. However, If I am to prepare these beverages myself I can only consume 3 on account of my making my drinks a little stronger than proved safe by any living scientist. Ultimately how I live my life is up to me and most recently I have decided the best way to enjoy my life is not sober. I hope to inspire others to join me on this slightly inebriated adventure. You don't know what you're missing. And for those of you non-believers, I'd like you to try an experiment. Prepare yourself an alcoholic beverage and go into your bathroom. Before you take a sip take a look at your ugly mug in the mirror and ask yourself "Do I like what I see?". After you've answered yourself, immediately turn the lights off and chug the drink. Run back into the kitchen and repeat this exercise seven times over. If by the end of the evening your self-image has not improved then you are fully entitled to send me hate mail accompanied by the required 750ml bottle of Smirnoff Vanilla of course. Cheers bitches!


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