Being a non-drinker in 2009 is an interesting thing. I donâ€™t drink because I donâ€™t like the way it tastes, and because it makes me sick. These reasons, Iâ€™ve found, arenâ€™t good enough. People look at me like I just sprung a second head that looks like Bud Cort. â€œYou have to acquire the taste!â€ they bellow incredulously.
Why would I want to spend hours trying to get myself to like something that I donâ€™t? I could just pick up something, like a root beer float, that is tasty at this exact second. Itâ€™s baffling to me. Whatâ€™s even more baffling is that people wonâ€™t get off my case about it. They ask if my parents were alcoholics (no), if I am in AA (no), if I have problems losing control (no). Is it that weird to just not like it?
I will say, however, that from time to time I feel as if I am missing out on the â€œfunâ€. Well, maybe not fun, but the screaming, guffawing, stumbling, slurring nights that everyone else has. And I donâ€™t want to complain, but if you have ever been the only sober one at a party, you know the annoyance level.
It was even worse when I lived in England, and drinking is simply a part of life. You donâ€™t go out to dinner with friends, you meet them at a pub. And if you arenâ€™t completed wrecked at the end of an evening, youâ€™re a pussy. There you donâ€™t dance, talk to a girl, or stir from your seat until you are good and sauced. I think its nuts.
Looking at alcohol culture from the outside is really bizarre. Not being able to see the appeal, it just seems confusing and sad. Look, Iâ€™m not going to knock anyone for having a good time. Have at it, but leave us sober folks alone. Itâ€™s enough work just talking to your maximum volume braying self when you are toasted.