There are a few things in life that are guaranteed to give you an extra dose of sassy as you sashay down the promenade: a new hair cut, putting on jeans that fit JUST right, and alcohol. Ahh yes, alcohol. Pickling your brain in several martini glasses full of vodka (or 10 shots of tequila) can you make you happy. Euphoric. Brave. It can give you confidence that you didn't know you had (and probably won't again, until you drink more). It can also result in bad decisions, the world's most awkward pictures, and the ability to wake up to a text from some rando that says "heyyyyyy this is ___________ from [that bar your friends dragged you to], call me sometime ;)'. There are 12 steps in the Alcoholics Anonymous Program that are in place to help one recover and heal. There are also 12 steps in the going-out-and-getting-ridiculously-bamboozled progression. Here they are:
Step One: The Plan
This is when you're sitting around in your sweatpants, generally unhygienic and unfit for interaction with other members of the human race. Your roommate/friend/coworker yells out/calls/texts you, telling you to put on your drunk adventure panties, because that's right, you're going out. You look mournfully at your half watched movie, imagining the evening you could have lounging in a land without restrictive waistband or care. Plus, when you realize just how much effort and energy you're going to have to expend to get ready (all that showering, getting dressed, etc.) it just doesn't seem worth it. There are so many other things you could do instead....
Step Two: Pumping Up
...until you heard about that great deal at that bar. Or THE girl/guy you've had your eye on for what seems like a bazillion years is going to be there too. Or your roommates won't shut up until you say yes. It doesn't matter. YOU'RE READY NOW. GET OUT OF THE WAY, IT'S TIME TO PREPARE FOR DRUNKEN DESTRUCTION.
Step Three: Getting Ready
Shower. Try on one outfit. Hate it. Throw it on the floor. Assess rest of closet. Everything is stupid, let's just set it all on fire. Oh wait, there's that dirty thing in the laundry basket. I could wear that. That could work. Just spray some more cologne/Febreeze/perfume on it. No one will ever know. Apply makeup, accessories, hair gel, and hairspray as necessary. Then do round two of makeup, accessories, hair gel, and hairspray as necessary when the first time didn't work. Do that weird thing in the mirror where you contort yourself into several odd positions to check yourself out, okay, it's all looking good....excellent. Let the games begin.
Step Four: The Pregame
This is when you arrive to the party/your dining room/someone else's place. Everyone's getting started, mixing drinks, trying to start drinking games. Girls are judging each other's outfits, guys are exchanging bro-pleasantries. The music is loud, and everyone keeps checking their phones. "Did you call Jenny? Is she coming? Tell her to get more beer."
Step Five: Getting Started
The drinking games have begun. The shots have been poured. Jenny has arrived with more beer. The music is blaring, and we're past the point of "oh, I'm just going to have only one drink, I'm going light tonight". Everyone is laughing, screaming, and being generally obnoxious.
Step Six: Oh, We're In It Now
Step Seven: I'm So Awesome
Ahhh, yes. At some point, you've left the pre-game and are now at the bar. This is the part of the evening where liquid courage is hitting you full force. You dance like a music video star, drink shots like a Tanqueray ad, and your hair has never looked better. Everything you do is amazing. Everyone is looking at you, because as I said, you're amazing. Why haven't you realized before that you're this awesome? Well, now you know. You sip a drink with a coy look on your face, because you just know someone is taking a mental snap shot of you in this moment. You should have your own reality show. Yesssssssss.
Step Eight: I CAN DO THAT
This is when all that internal awesomeness you are made of congeals into one super lump of amazingness. And boom. Nothing is impossible. I can climb that outrageously tall and not-meant-to-be-climbed object. I can drunk text this person without consequence. I can eat this. I can lick that. I can probably touch that high-up object. I'm going to parkour. I ACCEPT EVERY CHALLENGE. COME AT ME, OBSTACLES.
Step Nine: That Was A Bad Idea
You later come to realize that 95% of the things you just did were poor choices. Insta-regret.
Step Ten: The Men Left Behind
The night winds down. You find yourself in a late night eatery, your kitchen, or a friend’s bedroom, snacking on any food that was easily reachable/sat still long enough. You discuss the play-by-plays of the night. You review who was the most epic, the most annoying, the most drunkenly sloppy. There is always mention of a ridiculous guy or a catty girl. Everyone curses that person as a group, thereby committing them to the Drunken Memory Hall of Fame. The conversation then turns to reflect on the friends who have gone off with some stranger, or who have passed out for the night. A moment of silence is held for them, for they are not here, eating this delicious pizza.
Step Eleven: Solitude
The 30 milliseconds before you fall into an alcohol induced coma. Any care, question, or concern you may have had throughout the evening will be dealt with tomorrow. Also, where did I leave my------
Step Twelve: Mother of God, What Happened
You wake up, slowly and painfully. The amount you drank last night directly correlates to the massive hangover you now have. Who let that elephant sit on your head? Why did I mix all those drinks last night? There is a beeline of objects (shoes, earrings, your wallet, a pen you stole, an overturned water glass, a bag of chips) leading to where you slept, X-marking-the-spot of your drunken progression towards the bed/couch/floor. You pat yourself on the back for making it home in one piece. You still have your credit card...well done, self. Then everything you did last night (or remember doing last night) hits you like like an express train. You said what? You made out with who? Mother of God....what happened? You spend the rest of the day recovering and piecing together the events of last night, Law and Order style. No text undissected, no drink undiscussed.
And always, at some point in the evening, there is a moment where you swear to yourself that you'll never do anything like this again. Until next weekend.