This may seem like the least necessary guide ever created, but if there’s anything my years of Professional Drinking have taught me, it’s that whether you’re a youngin’ yet to go off on your first binge or in the midst of a mid-mid-life crisis with a home bar collection as your most prized possession and best friend, there’s much more to drinking than the act of consumption.
Everything likes to get high. That’s nothing special. The trick is to maximize one’s potential enjoyment of alcohol imbibement by exploring the culture and following certain etiquette. Of course, when one gets lubed it can be hard to stay on top of anything let alone best practices, so view what follows as a guide to work towards. Lord knows I still am mastering the craft of Professional Drinking. These steps are rife with contradiction in overlapping principles, but what do you want from me? I’m drunk.
Try Everything Once
You don’t like gin, you say? More of a vodka drinker?
If the above question feels like it was written specifically for you, it’s probably because you haven’t tried Hendrick’s yet. But regardless of the subjectivity of taste buds, superior or not, the world of alcohol is so diverse that there is literally something out there for everyone. If neither beer nor wine does it for you, chances are there’s a mixed drink that will blow your pants (or panties) off in a burst of splendid flavour faster than Rob Ford rejects anything with the term “bike” in it.
Go exploring! Riding a bike makes an excellent substitute to drinking and driving as well. Something Toronto’s mayor could benefit from.
Know Your Limit
We’ve heard it before. It’s true. The main quality that separates Professional Drinkers from hoboes is that PDs have a concept of when they have to stop/go home to drink more alone.
Also, beware of shots. It can be easy to forget that you’ve downed them (or how many) when you’re tallying up the beverages you’ve consumed in an evening to determine if you’ve had too much (chances are that if you’re wondering this, you have).
As I stated in my first piece on PP, How To: Enjoy Smoking (Cigarettes), there is no better coupling than alcohol and cigarettes. Just ask any of the 50% of “non-smokers” who only smoke when they drink [Citation Needed], the two are just too good together.
If you drink and don’t smoke, don’t start now, but know you’re missing out on something awesome.
Be As Cool As Don Draper and/or Peggy
Not only is drinking cool, it’s a sign of intelligence. A recent study even found that people of class drink. That’s right, simply having a taste for getting drunk is the first step to being as cool as everyone on Mad Men.
There’s no such thing as bias when you might be right.
Drink Too Much
… At least once in your life.
There is no better way to better your future enjoyment of inebriants than knowing what too much is. Now, I’m not advocating going out and doing an hour long keg stand, but to truly drink successfully, you either need to develop a strong tolerance or have learned from your mistakes.
Drinking too much can also be misguided. Much like dropping f-bombs every other sentence, using hashtags when posting directly to Facebook, and waiting for The Walking Dead to get good again. Sometimes you’ll end up making the kind of mistakes that end friendships. For example, saying something terribly inconsiderate about someone you care about that you only ever thought once and would never express if you were in a state where you would remember your actions the next day. Not that I’ve done that before…
Don’t Be A Constant Mooch
Hitting a hard time in one’s life is entirely understandable. However, if you’ve spent the last 5 years drinking on your friend’s hard earned dollars, chances are that drinking itself is holding you back. Take a second to consider what life would be like if you weren’t always finagling ways to get that next free pint, and imagine how great it would feel to be the one buying shots for the table.
If your friends live off of a trust fund, ignore the paragraph above.
Remember: Accessory Not Suit
Though alcohol’s best use is binding people in camaraderie (and sterilizing wounds), there’s a problem when the drink itself becomes your counterpart in life. It’s best to think of booze as the cuff links that get you noticed in an important business meeting, and not the suit that anyone can see from afar. To eliminate the metaphor, you look like a jackass when your thirst for the sauce is obviously insatiable. Trust me.
Sex Like Porn
Too drunk to fuck? Once you master Professional Drinking using the tips above, your sexual endurance can more easily be adapted to rough stuff in your favourite free online filmed intercourse. That is, if you’re into that kind of depraved thing…
Don’t Be A Dick
Perhaps the most important aspect of being a Professional Drinker is that you need to have tact. Of course, when you’re drinking “too much” and trying everything once, it can be a challenge to stay on top of the demon that alcohol can bring out in many people. For some, it’s mostly harmless. For others, it’s detrimental to their image with friends or strangers, and probably a little more secretively to themselves.
If you are one who is so inclined to alienate most when you’re really sauced, my suggestion is this: Shut-up. Be nicer. Another thing that might help is to remember to EAT and DRINK WATER. That’s right, the clear stuff that doesn’t make you feel better looking can prevent you from going off the deep end, so to speak.
Alcohol is the most accessible inebriant in North America. Its success to this day extends from our unwillingness to give it up, our communal alcoholism if you will. Prohibition didn’t and will not work and despite the outrageous prices we’re forced to pay in Canada, we’re some of the heaviest drinkers in the world. We’re also pretty much the coolest as well (and in more ways than tolerance for the drink). Little-known fact: Don Draper wishes he were Canadian. [Citation Needed]