Life Beyond the Bar Scene: 7 Days and 7 Nights of Sobriety
Feb 2011 15

Life Beyond the Bar Scene: 7 Days and 7 Nights of Sobriety

Posted In Blog,Booze,Food & Drink,Society

by Laurelin

The idea: Seven days of sobriety. This might not sound like a big deal to you guys, so imagine it this way: comparatively, I might as well be asking you 9-5ers for a week without coffee, or a week without food. Beer is my friend, my evening companion, my job and my love. My friends and I rarely have a night out without it and never a shift at work without serving it. Lucky for me, the night that my beloved Green Bay Packers won the Superbowl, beer and I spent a bit too much time together, and I was more willing than ever to give Sober Week a try. Here’s what happened.

Day 1: Monday was easy. I slept in, made a late lunch and went to a Hot Yoga class that kicked my ass more than I ever expected. Meditation and relaxing? Not this class. Staying in those positions for more than 10 seconds is just downright mean. I realized that I am terribly out of shape, that I am not bendy, graceful, or in any way ever going to try that again. I left feeling pretty good about myself though, I managed to sweat out the prior evening’s liquor consumption in an hour and a half. My body felt… new somehow. I could do this. That night I turned down two invitations to head out for Monday evening debauchery, and instead went to go see Sanctum 3-D. I learned cool one-liners to use in daily situations such as “What could possibly go wrong diving in caves?” and “There’s no God down here!” There’s no God during sober week either. I had been forsaken.

Day 2: Tuesday I was still riding the workout train. I dragged myself to Body Pump at my gym, where again, I was treated to an hour and a half of bicep and tricep hell. The instructor sounded like a female Arnold Schwarzenegger, and by the end of the class my arms were in such bad shape I couldn’t even put the weights away without shaking violently. I couldn’t get out of there fast enough. This probably wasn’t the best choice of workout, since as soon as I got home from the gym I headed back out for an evening of climbing at my rock gym. By the time I got home around midnight I was seriously wishing I could have a beer, but was too exhausted to change and was not willing to subject the people of Boston to my rock climbing pants. Spandex in public is never okay.

Day 3: Wednesday I was so sore I couldn’t move. I had overdone it, and upon trying to get up for a cup of morning coffee I literally fell onto my floor unable to hold myself up with my useless jelly legs and throbbing ass and thighs. If this is what sober week is going to feel like, then I quit. And quit I did. That night I joined my friends in a few beers to celebrate a pal’s birthday, and we all had a good laugh over how I made it three days and two nights into my experiment. I suck. I didn’t feel good about it, but the three Washington apple shots and my trusty friend beer quieted that inner voice, and eventually, I think it just drowned.

Days 4-7: The rest of the week was actually pretty balanced. I didn’t go out, and was able to sort of re-start the project in moderation. I went to museum exhibits, and attended by Naked Girls Reading (which is exactly what it sounds like). I ordered Chinese take out and ate most of it myself, learned to cook Thai noodle chicken, country fried steak, and stuffed mushrooms. I ate half a pizza with cheese stuffed ravioli and meatballs on it. I wrote a lot, and somehow also managed to drop my notebook in the toilet.

Results: If it weren’t for my mid-week breakdown, I think this project would have been a success. It was ultimately a huge failure. Working out was nullified by the constant flow of edible garbage in my face. My weight fluctuated throughout the week but I came out the same by day 7. On Tuesday I worked out so much that I couldn’t keep it going for the rest of the week, and actually wound up hospitalized briefly with some funky shin muscle shit. I was energetic and optimistic during the day and while working, and regretful and irritable on my nights off. Finding a bar scene balance is necessary. I guess for me, it’s not plausible to cut out drinking completely. Maybe I was silly to even think I could do it. Maybe I was silly to give in so quickly. Either way, sober week didn’t happen. I’m glad it’s over, now I can go back to accepting my shortcomings and self-medicating with vodka. Sweet relief!

Conclusion: Margaritas. Now.

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