So I'm working on this project with a couple friends of mine, and I'm supposed to come up with 5 meaningful stories that involve alcohol, but that aren't drinking stories. Rather just important things that have happened around alcohol. Not because of alcohol, just in the presence of.
I can tell drinking stories. I have drinking stories. Like when Peter made me take that shot of Yukon Jack and I spit it up all over the bar at Edison's. Or the 20+ jello shots I ate that during that one birthday party of mine. The time Joe at Trinkas made me take a shot of this bright orange stuff in a jar that he said was all the dregs of every bottle that ended up with less than a shot in it. The phase I went through of trying to create my own drinks at martini bars, one of which unfortunately involved a honey liqour. I have stories about drinking to impress people, or drinking to put up with a boyfriend, or one night stands. But that's not what they are looking for. They want stories about things changing in my life, and the alcohol that marked it, that happened to be around at the time.
Only it turns out I don't have any of those.
And I think it's because I don't have a lot of life changing events. Or I just don't look at things like they are life changing. There's what? City Year? Phoenix? Peter dying? I don't associate alcohol with any of that. My most alcoholic boyfriend I actually met and broke up with sober. Ayers and I did a lot of drinking together, but the fighting was always sober. The drinking was just there to keep us from being bored. I didn't really drink during high school or college, I did other things. And my family doesn't drink together except on holidays, and then we just sit around and talk a lot. There are three times I can remember being extremely wasted - once was with Krista at Funky Buddha, once was the first date I had with Corrigan when I fell down the stars, and the latest one was at the vodka party. Nothing really happened as a result of any of those times, except, you know, I was hungover.
I guess the point is, when I really examine my emotions towards things, I don't consider the large things important, only the details. The story about me drinking in a bar in the middle of an afternoon with Ayers? That's important, because that's how things were for years. And drinking sprite mixed with boxed wine in my Kent dorm room with Sarah and Amanda? That's important, because those were my closest friends there. Also cause I thought it was kind of gross. Peter always ordering a Celebrator at Edison's, and giving me the little white horses to collect is important. Drinking goldschlager in the basement of the Grid with Buddy and Tommy, because we were underage and it had gold in it, that's important. Chocolate martinis are important because they were my gateway drink to the world of adult bars. The specific brand of Romanian wine that Buddy and I spent years ordering from Northcoast, to the point where he only kept it stocked because of us, because it was the first red wine we actually liked. The cheap champagne I started drinking exclusively after Marty's wedding, because it occurred to me I liked champagne so much and I could just buy it, I didn't have to wait for things to happen.
There are drinks that are important to me, because they are the drinks that have been with me through my life and represent phases.
But the conflicts, the fights and moves and boys that made or broke me, none of them have anything to do with alcohol at all. I've been surprisingly sober during the immediate moments of my life.
Which leads to an interesting conclusion - do I drink more because it means nothing bad will happen, or do I drink less because otherwise nothing bad will happen?