For some reason known only to my evil alter-ego and the heavens, a couple of years ago I got up one day and announced that I wasn't going to drink from January 1 until the Super Bowl. Completely arbitrary dates and occasions. To this day, I have no clue.
Thinking about it, it makes sense that I was either detoxing from six solid weeks of mainlining champagne and cheese straws for the holidays, or that I was trying to lose weight. Either of those are perfectly reasonable explanations and you can take your pick...your guess is as good as mine. And each year I get up and without having even given it much thought, I abstain for that given period. It doesn't make that much difference to ME, but to the people who surround me on a daily basis...this is a reeaallly long month. Like, the longest month of the year and GUESS WHAT? It's just getting started.
We've had two family birthdays at the Mexican restaurant so far this month. The first time I ordered unsweetened tea, the waiter called up front and told the proprietor who came back to our table because he didn't believe it. Instead of the usual celebration which typically involves everyone in the family wearing the sombrero and singing "Cheeseburger in Paradise" with the Mexican-speaking music man, we ate in relative quiet. No one did any impromptu dancing down the aisles; no one served birthday cake to everyone in the restaurant we knew and half the people we didn't; and no one ordered "shots all the way around" and then FOLLOWED THROUGH. I had NO IDEA that I was the instigator of most of the family memories that keep my mother in such a tizzy, but obviously that's the case because this is the first time in memory we didn't SHUT THE PLACE DOWN.
I haven't decided if this is a good thing or not.
Do I feel better? No. No better, no worse. I haven't lost any weight...on the contrary, instead of reaching for a no-fat, no-carb bourbon and water after dinner I find myself looking around and realizing why people snack at night. Nothing else to do. I've been in bed by 9 p.m. every night this week. This is NOT all it's cut out to be.
I may, however, fall off the wagon this year. My college roommate's 50th birthday celebration is January 30 and if I'm going to drive to Bham for a catered, sit-down dinner, I think I'll have a drink. Or ten. The Super Bowl, I've been told, is February 2 this year (unlike two years ago when it was oh, say, ALMOST ST. PATRICK'S DAY) so it's not like I'm defeating the purpose. Whatever the hell it is.
But I will tell you this: my friends, my family, my kids, my neighbors and the average guy on the street? Y'all aren't NEAR as funny when I'M sober...not even close.
(The title was originally a typo but in retrospect...that's funny.)