Growing up, I witnessed a lot of drunken behavior. Liquor houses and sugar shacks dotted my neighborhood. The aunties and my mom would take turns hosting get-togethers on Saturday nights. Someone always had something simmering on the stove. Cheese and crackers were served so folks would have something on their stomach before drinking. And they didn’t go out much to have drinks. They had little “nips” at home.
I witnessed all the proper ways to drink and not get too drunk. All my life, I followed these rules and almost never had a hangover. Eat something, drink water, and know your limitations. For me, it was two martini’s and that was a wrap. The martinis did the trick the fastest, but there’s a fine line between maintaining a buzz and getting shit-faced. Staying between the euphoria and excitement level is a kind of alchemy.
There’s a fine line between maintaining a buzz and getting shit-faced.
This year, I’ve been in a text relationship. Because of COVID, we didn’t get to physically meet within the fourteen-day window of first meeting each other. Once that time period lapses—according to the experts—the sizzle will fizzle. It was days before we even talked on the phone. We sent photos back and forth until we got comfortable enough to FaceTime each other. He was cute with a little snaggletooth smile and shoulder-length locks that he liked to color blue, purple, or pink, according to his mood. I appreciate a guy who’s comfortable enough in his masculinity to try different things, especially pink hair. He also worked out a lot, the gym being his go-to happy place, and his abs were super on point. So far, so good right?
Well, it was his weekend revelry that had my eyebrows raised. Every single weekend, he would text about his drunken shenanigans. Yes, there were also multiple unanswered 1 am drunk-dials that led to drunk text messages. Since my phone goes on silent and “do not disturb” after 11 o’clock, those funny attempts to be flirty went unnoticed until the next morning. I returned the text with a ‘smh’ (shaking my head) without encouraging a repeat attempt to engage with this liquored-up soliloquy. We made potential plans for when things opened back up. The first attempt went downhill as he relayed that he was delayed at his family’s cookout. He was too drunk to link up with me and was going home to sleep it off.
He was cute with a little snaggletooth smile and shoulder-length locks that he liked to color blue, purple, or pink, according to his mood.
As a person who is strongly against drunk driving, I concurred. Second time, was a complete fluke. No prior plans were made. On the impromptu tip, we met up at an upscale seafood restaurant. We were both on time and looking cute. We laughed a lot and caught up on our life details. One drink each, and we felt very comfortable with one another. After one more drink and a few more laughs, we called it a night, ending things before midnight.
What’s the first thing you do when you’ve arrived, waiting to meet up with someone? Find the bar and get a drink of course.
The third time we planned for in advance: A friend had her art opening at a new downtown hotspot. I sent the address and the time, agreeing to meet at 7 pm. Putting on my fresh took me about an hour. He was driving from Raleigh and would get there about the time it took me to prepare myself. Counting myself on time at only 15 minutes late, I took in the atmosphere. The rain happening further South had blessed us with a cool breeze. The sun was resting low in the sky, almost ready to make a disappearance below the horizon. Hip-hop jazz soothed my ears as I walked up the concrete steps. The mood? Grown and sexy. The landscape was giving summer garden party vibes. Tea lights adorned each wooden patio set. Bright green turf grass lay interspersed along the deck. I felt transported to a beachside hideaway right in the middle of the city.
What’s the first thing you do when you’ve arrived, waiting to meet up with someone? Find the bar and get a drink of course. Meandering to the bar, stopping along the way to say hi and give air hugs, I checked my phone.
No missed calls or text messages while making my way to the back of the line. Distracting myself with the menu of bespoke drinks I was about to sip, I placed the phone in a side pocket so I could feel it vibrate. Surely he would call or text soon that he’s on the way. I got my drink, a hyacinth-laced frothy delight, and felt the phone wiggle. It was coming up on an hour and I’m thinking he’s either OTW or parking. I just shook my head at the text that he was ‘in bed drunk LOL.’
I was not laughing out loud at all. I sent back ‘so you’re not coming?’ He responds, ‘no, I’m wasted.’
A montage of his drunken behavior went through my mind as I sent back the only appropriate response – ‘sadly, you’re right.’♦
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