In honor of International Wine Day, I’m going to tell you the short story of the first time I got drunk. I was 18 and in Italy. I was touring Europe with a group of people from my high school, as well as a couple other high schools from the US. By no means had I not encountered alcohol by the time I was 18, I just hadn’t ever been interested in drinking. My good friends at the time would have parties multiple times a week, and every weekend when they would drink and get high, I was just along for the ride to guide them like an excitable little elf.
Before we reached Italy—and more specifically, Florence, Italy—we had been to London, Paris and Pisa. I was one of the oldest kids in the group so I could drink if I wanted to, my parents told the teachers that were with us that it was okay and the teachers didn’t really care (in London I had a Guinness beer, my “first” alcoholic drink, and I didn’t like it so I gave it to one of my teachers and joined the other kids in yelling, “CHUG! CHUG! CHUG!” while she finished it in one go #baller) but I still didn’t drink much up to that point.
For dinner one evening in Florence we went to an exquisite little restaurant off the Piazza della Repubblica, and I had the house wine with dinner. Like I said, I hadn’t cared much for any of the wine or beer I had had yet on the trip, but, good Lord, I remember this wine. It was sweet and smoky and when I drank it I felt like I was part of the wine. It had always been a part of my essence, I just hadn’t ever noticed that a part of me was missing, but here it was, in my hand, and I was now complete.
Since the wine was so sweet, I thought that it contained less alcohol (I don’t know why but my 18-year-old brain rationalized it very well) so I had the designated maximum drinks. While I was eating my dessert, someone said something stupid and I spit out what little wine I had left onto my cake and laughed. I laughed until I realized my wine was now on my plate making my cake soggy, then I laughed about that and continued to eat the cake and it was still delicious. Now noticing I didn’t have much wine left, I became concerned and asked the server, “Can I PLEZ havve ANOTHUR tWo,” I raised two fingers while (likely) blinking one eye at a time, “bottelz of this scrumptchus wine pluze.”
As you can imagine, I didn’t get two more bottles of wine despite my insistence that they were for my boyfriend and parents back home and definitely not to share with my roommates back at the hotel. To be fair, I wouldn’t have shared with my roommates. I would have drank the wine all by myself in the hotel room while they were elsewhere or asleep (or maybe I would have shared with them, who cares!). I forgot that I ordered two bottles of wine shortly after and I learned that the group was going to get gelato after we left the restaurant.
The girl I was sitting next to became “concerned” and told a teacher that I was drunk. I don’t think she cared, she just wanted to prove that she was a better child or something. After the meal I remember Mr. What-his-name walking over to me and asked, “Hey, Megan, you okay?”
“Yezsir, I am reallyFANtastic. Mmhm.”
He walked away unconcerned and laughing because it was likely not his first time dealing with a drunk child. My roommate told me as we were leaving that the girl next to me had told on me to which I responded, “FuckiNsnitch.”
We continued on to the “world’s best gelato place” (it wasn’t, it was like a slushie, ew.) and my roommate coached me on how to appear sober when drunk. While I still haven’t mastered it, I am better after much more practice in the five years I’ve been drinking since then. I don’t think I got drunk again on that trip but I can’t wait to go back to Florence to go back to that tiny restaurant and buy as many bottles of that perfect wine as my drunken heart desires.
Everyone uses a cell phone but no one wants a cell tower in their backyard.
No plans this weekend? How about scooping hundreds of pounds of algae and trash out of Tingley Beach?
Some Navajos are upset by Flying Wallenda Nik Wallenda's plans for a tightrope walk across the Grand Canyon and also point out that he is not actually going across the Grand Canyon anyway.
Snowden is in Moscow and American government officials are completely losing their minds.
Old school use of a coolie by Indian journalist has the journalist in hot water.
This story makes one wonder how many drones are watching us right now.
Some mugshots of Edwardian era women arrested for public drunkenness. "Occupation: polisher and prostitute."
Chris Brown may have assaulted a woman in a nightclub last night.
What are you doing on this fine Sunday afternoon? In the mood for some heavy drinking? Not as a participant, mind you, but as an amused observer? Head on over to The Box Performance Space for the world premiere screening of the feature-length comedy Drunk. The movie, directed by Phillip Hughes and written by Scott Bryan, features a whole host of Albuquerque actors including Daniel T. Cornish, Rebekah Wiggins, Jenn Daugherty, Jason Witter and Ryan Jason Cook. It was lensed in and around our fair city in 2011 and will be hitting film festivals at the end of the summer. The screening is free, but it’s also a fundraiser—so, if you wanna help out by sponsoring the film at an upcoming festival, there will be a donation pot to help get Drunk up and out on the road. Cast and crew will be around for the screenings at 3 and 5 p.m. Seating is limited, so you might want to shoot an RSVP over to the film’s Facebook page.
John Bear reviewed Peter Heller's postapocalyptic novel The Dog Stars in this week's issue. It got me thinking about what life would be like if everything went to shit. Actually, it got me thinking about all the things I would enjoy doing if there were some sort of cataclysmic event that wiped out most of the population—be it the coming zombie apocalypse, the also-plausible vampire apocalypse, or any of the doomsday scenarios that religious zealots spew forth every year.
To answer this question, I decided to consult a few of my favorite films and novels that deal in such grim matter.
And the realization that I came to is this: I'd get drunk.
That's right, if the world ended, everyone I knew and cared about was wiped out, and I had to spend my days raiding zombie-infested grocery stores with eerily flickering fluorescent lights, armed with a sawed-off—all in the name of scrounging up some Chef Boyardee and Twinkies—I'd probably come home in the evening to a nice fifth of $500 bourbon.
If you need proof that this is probably what you would do too, let us turn to a couple primary sources.
First off, there's Richard Matheson's brilliant 1954 novel, I Am Legend. You are most likely familiar with this work via the Charlton Heston flick or that Will Smith one that included some of the worst CGI of the 21st century.
If you haven't read Matheson's book, I advise you to do so. The protagonist, Robert Neville, basically goes around killing the shit out of vampires and then ... you guessed it, getting hammered. It's one of the most entertaining books I've ever read.
Moving on, there's that great scene in George Romero's Dawn of the Dead where some folks hole-up in a shopping mall to get away from the zombie hordes. And what do they do? Raid the mall's liquor store and get schnockered on high-end booze.
Exhibit C: When the world is ravaged by crazies infected with some sort of ape rabies in 28 Days Later, Brendan Gleeson's character grabs as much fine Scotch as his shopping cart can handle whilst on a scavenging run. He then proceeds to drink it.
Getting back to Peter Heller's book, all I know about its protagonist's tastes for liquids is that he drinks Coke. I already don't trust him.
The Supercommittee is in trouble.
Police reopen the Natalie Wood drowning case.
Protesters occupied Paseo del Norte for more jobs.
Herman Cain is a leader not a reader.
Health care companies payed millions for direct Newt access.
A second experiment at CERN found subatomic particles moving faster than the speed of light.
Worst. Sandwich. Ever.
Sears lost $421 million last quarter.
People are already camping out for Black Friday.
How pizza became a vegetable.
Six reasons to stay away from hippos.
Teen Mom 2 season 2 trailer!
Who are the real job-creators?
Pilot accidently locks himself in the bathroom mid-flight, causing terror scare.
Probably not a good idea to inject the silicon you buy at Lowes to make your butt bigger.
Just how many coffins are being stored in Atlanta for a supposed high casualty event?
Top 10 inappropriate Sesame Street parody sketches.
Apple has more cash on hand than the US government.
Albuquerque firefighters vote no confidence in Chief James Breen.
Former President Bush finally explains his deer in the headlights reaction to 9/11 news.
Cop towing DARE trailer ironically charged with DWI.
Out of control ravers shut down Hollywood.
What's the deal with white watermelon seeds?
The 17 greatest celebrity photobombs.
Olivia Wilde did a fake nude scene. DAMN YOU SCIENCE!
What's the point of having friends if you can't be mean to them?
I'm going to make this marbled coconut bread tomorrow If you guys want to come over and hang out.
Did three British boys time travel to medieval England?
We're trying to drink vodka and Gatorade but only the wine glasses are clean.
Activist tries to stop dolphin hunting in Japan.
Fossil Penguins had penchant for earth tones.
Drunk guy drives drunk woman to police station, gets arrested.
City wants border collie-killing pitbull back, owner says no way.
Wanted confidence man caught in Burque.
Intruder gets cut with machete.
Woman gives secret birth, again.
Father alleges thrill kill cult exists in military.
Art and science are usually viewed as separate, walled-off worlds.
It’s been said that art, while influenced by philosophy and strategy, maintains steadfast ground not in the head, but in the muse-directed heart and gut.
It also goes that science lives in the brain, plodding through cerebral pathways to carve out theories and observe minute truths.
The problem with this stereotype is that it just isn’t true. Art and science lease equal space in the head and heart, and they influence each other as much as they are each inspired by beauty and logic.