Petition for a Variance in the term “Alcoholism”
July 7, 2010 5 Comments
Have you ever imbibed with either a non-transplanted Brit or Scot?
The perception that both groups of well-known consumers of both the pint and drachm possess (as per my conversations over said drinks with both nationalities) concerning the American definition of alcohol consumption is one where we consider ourselves irresponsible if we drink anything over a cocktail an hour, with that cocktail always being some fruity “-tini” version of a real measure of alcohol, not a more masculine measure of a shot and beer chaser. The gist of the opinion that I garnered was that we, the Great American Experiment… are afraid of booze and the associated social activities that surround it.
I know that I am only discussing two of the most libatious groups that I associate with and that there are others out there that are known to get just as deep in their cups (I am staring directly down the eye sights of the last bottle of Kalashnikov vodka that I picked up, Mr. Russian Guy), but there are none out there that I know as well as the two that were previously mentioned, and none with as chipper an attitude towards pub time as they. Keeping up with them has been a challenge that I have readily accepted since being on the other side of the pond, and yes there has been some times that I have stumbled, but for the most part all is well the morning following a session with these two rowdy groups with myself looking forward to the next evening. Work still gets accomplished, sometimes with a soft head of course, but as with anything you just adapt and move forward and don’t let something as insignificant. I have had some of the LARGEST times getting on the piss with my friends and not once was there any violence, chest beating or melancholic admissions of pain or guilt.
-Just good times if you ask me.
Problem is I do have time off from the international scene, and that time for the past few years has been spent primarily in the States. I have been known to go out to a local pub with my friends from time to time and have a real piss up, but any that are not familiar with my drinking habits have this unknown desire to assume the mantle of the guy that drank Old Iron under the table and attack said goal with initial gusto. I have seen it time and time again, and my Stateside friends have learned better and usually attempt to warn off the unwitting victim… but more often than not we end up having to pour the moron into a cab with written instructions concerning his place of residence either written on a piece of paper pinned to his chest, or (and my personal favorite) written in marker on his slacked and drooling face.
Hey, no matter how old you are a sharpie and alcohol ALWAYS turns out funny.
-Then we get to the family. I had a sit down with the Matron (over a whiskey and water, two cubes of ice of course) and was asking why she no longer thought to warn me about the dangers of the amount that I consume; why she was so silent on a topic that has been a concern of hers … for “historical” reasons. The answer she gave me was that it seemed that my time overseas had of course increased the amounts that I consume, but that she had never seen someone, even most of the other adults that she knows… be so mature about it. She wasn’t worried about me anymore because she saw that even though I use it to lubricate certain events and assist in the ease of conversation at times she just never has seen me ABUSE it, just consume copious amounts that would pickle a moose.
Hey, we all have our thresholds.
So in closing, I am petitioning the American concept and definition of alcoholism for a variance. As I have been exposed to the consumption routines and habits of multiple cultures and have found a pleasant level that I can be at and not be a complete slobbering idiot of a drunk I would greatly appreciate if said variance could be approved that would allow me to drink at the levels that I can tolerate without becoming some social pariah for having an individual bar tab of a c-note. My family are fine with it; my American friends view it with a certain level of awe… so why not?
Come on. Be cool.
I’ll buy the first round if you do…
UPDATE: Never mind. Seems that even doctors can’t come up with a solid definition of alcoholism.