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On drinking responsibly

Elva a Talk Up!

Friday, August 31, 2012    

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I recently visited my Facebook page and skimmed over some of the funny, sad, informative stuff that people share randomly on the Internet with perfect strangers.

I encountered a video, entitled 'Drink responsibly or this could happen to you.' A long title for what was obviously some young lad's drunken episode and, against my better judgment, I opened it. On the YouTube video posted by someone who never missed a minute of the action, a young man is in the street, lying on his back in broad daylight, hysterically yelling in very colourful language about arbitrary matters while surrounded by jeering peers, one of whom was using a plastic helmet to slap him intermittently across the face in an attempt to calm him.

Based on comments in the background of the recording like "Who gave him rum?" and "Why are you behaving like this" I gathered that this may have been his first public display of drunkenness and that he doesn't normally behave or act in this boisterous fashion — well, at least that the persons gathered were aware of.

It was sickening and hilarious at the same time, which now makes me question my own attitude towards public humiliation, but that's a whole other story. See, a part of me wanted to curse out the heartless individual who posted the video for the world to witness for years to come; berate and chide the person hitting the drunk across his zoned-out face; utilise the stop option on the video and just reach out to the youngster and shield him in my superwoman cape. But the sinister, self-righteous element that dwells within me took some satisfaction in knowing that he had learnt an important lesson.

This was hypocritical of me since I too have been snared by the influence of 'demon juice' in the past. Not habitually, but on more than one occasion, and never ever in public (like that makes me better than any other slob).

I usually know when to quit and sometimes I push the limit just a little, to show off, I guess. Thankfully, I have always made it safely home, but once I get inside, that is when my drama overtakes anything I may have seen on that man's video. I don't usually recall the sequence of events, but the state of affairs of my room, and my body, usually tells the tale the morning after. As for the bonding of me and one particular bathroom fixture accompanied by tears, moans and prayers promising God that if he ever took me safely through this I would never, ever drink again.

I no longer drink alcohol, not for any other reason than I've lost the taste for it. Some people drink to get confidence; to relieve stress; to blend in; or just out of habit. Drinking, like any other vice, is not a bad thing; even the Bible advocates having wine. But the abuse of the 'demon juice' is what can lead to one being the butt of jokes or a social outcast. Not to mention the damage that can be done to organs of the body.

Nowadays, some people like to say 'You only live once" so they dive headlong into life and do or overdo whatever feels good at the time, tossing caution to the wind. If that's your philosophy, I'm not here to judge you; just remember that no one has ever been victorious in the battle of man vs alcohol.

Please, also, be reminded that with the advancement of technology, one night of 'fun' can result in a cruel reminder of your only-live-once-days popping up in the future to haunt you.

Have a great weekend, guys. Drink, but do so very responsibly. E-mail me elvachatalot@yahoo.com and follow me on Twitter @ElvaJamaica

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