Due to medical reasons, I was unable to drink booze or smoke weed for nearly the entire month of July — 26 loooong, miserable days of sobriety.
Now, that might make me sound like an alcoholic, but I’m not. I’m actually more of an alcoholist — as in, one who studies and appreciates alcohol. Just as a scientist loves science and a Marxist believes in communism, as an alcoholist I love and believe in the life-affirming, life-enriching qualities of alcohol.
But I’m also all about self-control and discipline, so I climbed aboard the wagon with determination. Despite being the bon-est of bons vivants in a city known for its overflowing champagne fountains and yard-long daiquiris, I could do this.
My willpower was sorely tempted along the way.
My first test came when I was hired to do some sampling events at various liquor megastores around town. You know how they hire those babes to come in on the weekends and pour free samples of some genteel new rotgut or another? Well, as it happens, I was hired to promote a delicious new girly cream liqueur that is so indescribably yummy, it’s like drinking the jizz of a holy man, if he had eaten nothing but cinnamon toast for 40 days and 40 nights.
Now, it was tortuous enough to stand there for hours on end inhaling the heavenly scent of this amazing beverage, pouring free shots for everyone but myself … but doing it in the middle of a liquor megastore was even worse. I love going into those stores because of the astonishing variety of fancy liquors, liqueurs and cordials on display: Godiva chocolate, Limoncello, Chambord … even Ron Jeremy’s new rum (Ron de Jeremy, LOL) tempted me sorely! It was all I could do to restrain myself around all that sweet, sweet booze. But I did.
It got worse the following week, when some friends asked me to work a marijuana-industry trade show. They wanted me to wear my Mary Jane showgirl costume and walk around promoting their company and collecting free swag. Jeezum Crow! I thought being in that liquor store was tough — at the tradeshow, I couldn’t take two steps without someone offering me a brownie, a lollipop or a hit off of a vaporizer. It was sheer agony.
Then, to make matters worse, I was invited to the big industry after party in some old-school mansion over in the Scotch 80s … but I declined. The invitation came from a teetotaling professional ukulele player from Hawaii, who offered to keep sober company with me so I didn’t feel out of place … but, honestly, I just couldn’t see going to that kind of party without being able to smoke and drink. I mean, just being at the convention opened my eyes to how annoying high people are when you yourself are sober — did I really want to spend an evening surrounded by them?!
However, missing the party was hardly the only negative impact that being on the wagon had on my social life. A girlfriend got me a fabulous gig appearing in a national anti-alcohol public-service commercial that was to showcase the evils of binge drinking, as practiced by young women who “save up” their calories by fasting all day in order to booze all night. Wow, a national PSA — does it get any better?! I’ve always wanted to be a cautionary tale!
The ad was to consist of us girls reciting a line of dialogue, then — “CUT!” — the producers would feed us a shot of liquor, then wait 15 minutes and have us repeat the line, after which they would feed us another shot. This process was to be repeated over and over, showing our speech getting more and more slurred.
Alas, when the producers found out I couldn’t actually drink the liquor, I was unceremoniously axed from the spot. Fired from an anti-alcohol PSA because I couldn’t drink. The irony! Damn you, sobriety, for causing me to miss out on yet another fabulous experience — I have half a mind to make my own PSA, on the evils of being sober!!
But it all worked out for the best — my girlfriend informed me the producers made them drink peppermint schnapps (ugh!) until they puked in an onset toilet. And, yes, there was a puke cam. So I guess I’m glad I missed out on that one, after all.
And besides … by the time you read this, I’ll be in Sturgis, S.D., at the nation’s biggest biker rally, drinking and carrying on like I never left off. You see, I planned my 26 days of sobriety to end just before my trip out there … which is to be immediately followed by my annual trip to Burning Man. So when I think about it, 26 days on the wagon were probably a good idea, to clean out my liver and prepare it for the 36 days of partying ahead.
Laissez les bons temps rouler!
SARAH JANE WOODALL lets it roll on her blog, wonderhussy.com.