Looking from the bottom of a shot glass: reflections
Yesterday, I went out for a night of coarse drinking. Ever since I totally wasted myself five years ago, I vowed never to relive the stupidity and the need for reliance on other people: I realized that I should be responsible for myself and for the others who may need my help during these sessions. I wasn’t going to reconsider it for yesterday, although because of traumatic circumstances from my recent past I may have developed more of a tolerance for alcohol. I’m still not very fond of alcohol; frankly, I drank only because people become more conversant as well as patient listeners when they have taken in a bit of alcohol, and I needed that.
There’s a different side to drinking that I have subtly enjoyed, however: once people have taken in enough alcohol, the inhibitions begin to pale away and their true nature is often seen. From that singular experience of being totally drunk I find myself a quiet man with an imposing superego, something that has been quite consistent with my quotidian existence these past few years. In short, I’m no fun when I’m drunk. I may burst into song, but for the most part I’ll stay quiet and wait until the heaviness and the languor get washed away by my body or by water.
I enjoy drinking as a spectator sport, however, because the mask of propriety falls off from people and their true colors come to the surface. People with hidden ‘wild sides’ allow these to come alive when they have taken in enough drink; people who are silent become uncharacteristically vociferous; and the men with rather untamed libidos have these rise to the fore. I’m just glad that my parents have raised me quite well to be scrupulous even in times of mental laxity (and chemical inebriation), and I am glad that they teach by example (although I make a few mistakes time and time again).
I wasn’t shortchanging myself yesterday, too. I think I probably had two bottles of beer, four shots of tequila, and the world spinning around me. Yet I could never find myself to be improper to ladies or to even be an ass to some of my friends (some even deserved it!). I could be an ass and am a big one at times, but these are often precipitated by my scruples and not by drink. While I was in my drunken stupor I was just wondering how painful it must have been for Yamada to never have gotten out that she liked Mayama after all that time: I knew that despite the watercolor backgrounds, Honey and Clover‘s relationships and characterizations were seated in real life, and that truly, especially after yesterday’s party, it really does break down some internal barriers and inspires a chemically-induced blase attitude as regards societal standards, even if only for hours. I didn’t really appreciate it back when I was still a true teetotaler, but I do now.
I admire her, however, for saying it even though she knew it would lead nowhere. I probably couldn’t do what she did even if was dead-drunk and vomiting like there was no tomorrow. She’s a bit pathetic: despite knowing she’s chasing air, she nevertheless admits to herself that it’s what she wanted, even if she hurts herself time and time again. But she’s also quite courageous for finally admitting to herself that she liked him despite everything. I have seen people tear their shirts off in public: I have even stuck my head in a freezer because I felt so hot after one time, because there was no water around, and I think I’m a bit allergic to alcohol. Only few people could compare with her feat of honesty and daring, however: to be courageous when defeat is imminent is a trait found mostly only on heroes, whether fictional or historical.