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delirium happy

Just keep on trying till you run out of cake

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phoenixdreaming wrote about her relationship with alcohol and I feel compelled to do the same. I was going to comment, at first, but then I figured I'd rather be long and rambly, and talk about my own experiences rather than comment on that entry, so it's going into entry form instead.

I don't drink alcohol at all. In fact, I very rarely drink anything other than water, and when I do (maybe once a year or so), it's almost invariably hot chocolate. People often tend to assume that I drink water because it's healthy, but really, that has very little to do with it. I drink water:

1. Because it's cheap. Duh.
2. Because it's easy. Very little is easier than turning on a tap.
3. Because I don't like the taste of most drinks.

This third one is the main reason, really. I suspect that I am a supertaster, and I'm quite certainly a picky eater. When I was growing up my mum quickly learned not to put even the slightest amount of a ingredient that I didn't like into foods I was expected to eat, because I would invariably notice they were there and refuse to eat the food.

To be honest, I very much suspect that I could find some other drink that I'd like if I tried; I just feel absolutely no inclination to do so. I'm perfectly content drinking nothing but water, and the prospect of sampling a whole slew of drinks I'd likely find vile to find something that I liked just doesn't seem worth it.

The same goes double for alcohol. My lifetime consumption of alcoholic beverages comprises approximately two small mouthfuls of not-particularly-good lager, at the age of 16. From this experience, I learned two things:

1. Bad lager is vile and I wanted nothing to do with it.
2. Peer pressure is a mug's game, and I wanted nothing to do with that either.

Both lessons have served me well over the years since.

Notice, though, that I say that I don't like bad lager and not that I don't like alcohol. I don't know if I'd like alcohol in general, because I don't have a large enough sample size to go on. Possibly I would do. Possibly if I got into it, I'd take great pleasure from knocking back neat whiskey as if it was a character from a poorly-written western. I doubt it, but it's possible.

The thing is, I don't care. There are lots and lots of things that I've never done which I might enjoy. Water-skiing, streaking major public events, painting with my toes, and basket weaving, to name just a few. Maybe I'll try some of them some day, or maybe I won't. Maybe I'll try alcohol some day, or maybe I won't. I've just never really felt compelled to do so.

And really, honestly, why would I want to? Here are some of the reasons why I'm more inclined not to try it than to try it:

1. I don't like things that taste bitter, and also don't like fruity drinks, so the oddsof finding something I'd like are fairly low.
2. My brain chemistry is messed up enough as it is without adding more neuroactive chemicals, particularly depressants, into the mix.
3. It costs a fortune. Especially when compared with water. I'd rather spend that money on other things.
4. I'm perfectly capable of behaving like an idiot and making a fool of myself when sober, and don't really need further encouragement.
5. I have a family history of problems with alcohol.

With all of those in mind, it just feels completely unappealing.

Oddly, I've had very few problems with other people trying to insist that I ought to drink. Possibly this is just because I don't go out much, possibly it's because I have awesome friends who know that being pushy is both stupid and annoying, or possibly it's just that I give off such a "fuck off" vibe when people ask why I don't drink that nobody bothers pressing any further. Any which way, I am grateful for it.

(I should also add, that I don't have any problem with other people drinking alcohol. If I'm honest, I think it's kinda dumb, but lots of people do lots of things that I think are dumb, and it would be a boring world if it were otherwise. Some of my friends even play World of Warcraft, and I still respect them! I'm all for people doing whatever makes them happy. (Though people who use being drunk as an excuse for being obnoxious can fuck right off. And people who come to me when hungover and expect sympathy can expect to get laughed at. Other than that, knock yourselves out!))

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Personally, I'm all about you doing -- or not doing -- whatever best floats your boat. If that means you not being impressed by or interested in alcohol, power to you - that means more left over for the rest of us! And honestly, I'm more baffled by geeks who don't drink coffee than by people who don't drink alcohol -- medical reasons excepted, of course. There are maybe three coffee drinkers at my current geekjob, and that blows my brain apart.

I'm a mild social/relaxation drinker, m'self. My parents are very traditional-European in their approach to drinking, which is to say, they enjoy wine with their meals. I've picked up this approach as well, though usually more when eating out than at home, since I can't be arsed to wrestle the cork out of the stupid bottle. Now and again I'll enjoy a beer out with friends or at home with the roommates. I also enjoy a tiny nip of Scotch, nursed slowly with a book out on the porch after a long day. It's a kind of "comfort food", if you will.

But in the grand scheme, alcohol is fairly take-it-or-leave-it with me. When I was knocked flat by c-diff colitis back in February and on a strict diet of bland/mild foods, the thing I missed more than any other potable was the coffee.

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