Monday, December 10, 2007

2496 Bottles of beer on the wall..

Far be it from me to criticize the way other people spend their free time, but there is a dude in my neighborhood who needs check himself. Mondays are trash and recycling day and every Monday he has two cases of Miller Light out on the curb. At first blush that is only about 6 3/4 beers a day, which doesn't seem that bad. But, then you think of the consistency and it becomes a bit staggering. This dude drinks a 6 pack a day, every day. Or, somewhat more disturbingly, he could drink a case each day on the weekend! Or, a 12 pack each day Friday through Monday. Either way, you get the idea.

576 Ounces a Week. Almost 30,000 ounces a year! And it's about $40.00 a week, for a total of more than 2K a year... only on beer at home. You know this guy drinks at the bar too. Jesus! Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against people drinking, it's as American as apple pie, and some may argue even more so. I myself did my fair share of drinking at one time too, but I never got close to 2 cases a week, not even in college. I would think this guy may be on his way to having a problem, if he's not there already.

Most of the people I know don't understand why I decided to quit drinking. If truth be told, money factored into it quite a bit. Just like when I quit smoking in high school, it didn't have anything to do with health or moral and ethical objections. Back then I couldn't afford to keep up a smoking habit, and so I just quit. It was easy for me, because I never really got anything out of smoking, epically once I realized that it didn't make me look cool.

And so it was with drinking. One day I acted as the designated driver when I went out with my wife to see a band we used to see on a regular basis. I still had a great time, but I didn't drop $30 bucks on 6 drafts. I took some time to try and think about what drinking did for me, and the answer was: nothing. I still had as much fun if I didn't drink, and trust me, I didn't need all the extra calories if it wasn't enhancing my fun. I don't need the help of beer to cut lose and act crazy, I can do that just fine on my own thank you. Plus, the added bonus was: I was always there to be the driver.

Once I decided that I didn't need beer to have a good time, I made the choice to go cold turkey and not drink anything in any situation. Not surprisingly, I never missed it. I never found myself saying "boy, I sure could use a drink right now" which is even better because I have a history of alcoholism in my family.

Now, if I could just give up pasta, cookies and cheese steaks as easily as I gave up drinking I'd be all set.


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