Archive for August, 2010

The Consequences of Drinking

August 2, 2010

I’ve been able to legally consume vodka for over a decade. In that time, I’ve learned exactly how many drinks I can have before I want to share the glory of my bosoms with total strangers, and how many more it takes for the urge to be acted on. That particular lesson came one fabled law school night, when I decided to forget experience, ignore the bra-less warning signs and kept on drinking. I eventually reenacted the striptease from Gypsy (complete with boob shake and leg kicks) for an entire bar. Ten years of drinking experience has also taught me when to put the trash can next to the bed and that on very rare occasions, like the Gypsy Night, it is advisable to sleep on the bathroom floor. But between a Typical Weekend Night where I behave myself and hold my naked impulses in check, and the other extreme where Public Nudity Seemed Like A Good Idea At The Time, there’s an in-between phase. Its a place where I’m drunk enough to be stupid but not to the point my friends are taking me home, demanding I keep my clothes on at least during the cab ride. Its these in-between nights where Droids get broken (like Friday), shoes get lost (also on Friday) and nail polish disasters occur (clearly Friday was eventful).

I know exactly how the Droid thing happened. It was about 8 o’clock, several hours into a prolonged work happy hour but still early enough that all the details are clear. For some reason, I had my phone on the corner of the table and it fell from the extended-height tabletop to the concrete patio. My phones generally take a beating and in the three months I’d had it, the Droid was no different. It survived multiple falls, a kitchen sink immersion and 20 pounds of Bionic Kitty sitting on it at every opportunity. But apparently a five foot drop onto pressed concrete was too much. Initially I thought the phone was only cracked, but as the weekend progressed, the hairline screen fracture grew and turned into a flickering screen with limited touch capabilities. Essentially, it is a big brink in my purse that occasionally rings but I can’t answer. This morning, I coughed up $300 and am on the waiting list for an X.

I’m also pretty sure how the shoe casualty went down. On Saturday, when I was trying to establish my Consumption Timeline, I determined the loss was after I left happy hour (I opted to leave six hours after it began, and it was still going strong, by the way) and had met Stella for more drinking. There are parts that get a little fuzzy but I believe at some point, I demanded she put me in a cab. All I know for sure is that I suddenly started to experience the early-onset symptoms of a nudity urge, so logically, I took off my shoes and tried to put my feet out the window of a moving vehicle. Understandably, the cabbie was not happy about this and expressed his displeasure. I have vague recollections of phrases like “stupid white girls and their freaky behaviors” and “get your (deleted), (deleted) feet out of the (deleted) window or I’ll kick your scrawny, white (deleted).” He got me home safely and I tipped him well, in part for putting up with me but also for calling me “scrawny.” I took that as a complement. In addition to the extra cash, it seems the cab driver also acquired one of my shoes. I know I got into the cab with two but by the time I reached my apartment building door, there was only one. If it had gone out the window, I’m confident I would have remembered that; I suspect I just left it behind. Randomly around DC, I’ll come across a single dress shoe or flip-flop. Occasionally there’ll be a nearby sock as well. I’ve never understood where these things came from, but I’m beginning to suspect that I am not the only person with alcohol-induced nudity urges, and these lone shoes are the byproducts.

But I discovered  the biggest calamity of my Drink-A-Thon about 6:40 a.m. on Saturday, when I woke up craving water. After a night of quasi-debauchery, I always get up in the wee hours thanks to an overwhelming need to hydrate. I’ve learned to optimize this time, since it’s the witching hour between drunkenness and the onset of hangover. Usually, all I have to do it get water, take aspirin and choose trash can or toilet. But on Saturday morning, as I swung my feet over the side of the bed and stepped towards the kitchen for my date with the Brita, my foot landed directly in a puddle of something wet and tacky. My initial impulse was I had thrown up and missed the trash can, but when I looked down, I discovered a puddle of nail polish.

My forensic analysis of the scene suggests that at some point after I got home, I decided to be proactive and help mitigate my hangover by drinking a some water and eating. Scattered along the floor, on the side of my bed, was a bottle of water, assorted granola bars, a bag of shredded cheddar and nail polish. The order in which everything occurred is unclear, but the evidence suggests I ate half of at least three granola bars. The bag of cheese was open and strewn over the comforter; I’m not sure where that comes into play. The nail polish is also unexplainable since my mani and pedi were completely intact. But the bottle was clearly open and sitting on the edge of a puddle of OPI’s Atomic Orange. From the epicenter of the spill, which my foot landed directly in when I was getting out of bed, were paw prints radiating out in a systematic pattern, like a cat knowingly went through the polish and then walked until the wet gloss wore off. From the repeated one-way tracks, it looked like the cat did this over and over again, turning around and re-walking through the polish every time it began to dissipate.

Obviously the first thing I did after washing my foot and cleaning the majority of the polish spill was to investigate the cats. Number Two’s paws came up clean but, as expected, there were orange chunks matted in the base of Bionic Kitty’s leg fur. By that point, my hangover had kicked in and I knew I was about to be horizontal for the day. Scraping up the orange prints took almost five hours on Sunday and the entire time, I wished that Friday night had ended with public nudity instead.