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HOW TO SURVIVE AN A.A. MEETING

1.) Do not make eye contact.
If you do, make sure your eyes do not flicker toward the flask in your pocket because your eyes will always give you away.

2.) Do not surrender your will.
When asked to stand up and confess you are an alcoholic, you should mumble “I am an agoraholic.” If they catch on to your ruse, let out a yelp and bolt outside to prove you are indeed addicted to wide open spaces.

3.) Do not brag about your drinking prowess.
If you catch yourself mentioning the time you chugged tequila while being held upside down by four nude hookers, make sure
you close the story with, “Man, that totally sucked.”

lip-fart4.) Refrain from making “lip farts” (fig. 1) or other disparaging sounds during members’ tearful confessions.
Keep in mind that some segments of society consider drinking a twelve-pack of beer in a single sitting to be “hardcore boozing.”

5.) Avoid getting drawn into the prayer circle at the end of the meeting.
This can sometimes lead to hugging. Announce that you belong to an animist sect and bark aggressively if anyone attempts to hold your hand.

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HOW TO FEND OFF A RELIGIOUS NUT

1.) Smile tolerantly when he speaks negatively about alcohol.
An angry reaction will only reinforce their sense of self-righteousness. You should smile in the way our G.I. forefathers smiled at Frenchmen relating war stories.

2.) Remind him the Bible has many pro-drinking passages.
Say: “Christ turned water into wine and you, uh, want to do the opposite. So, logically speaking, that must make you . . .” At this point you should stroke your chin and pretend to be concentrating very deeply.

3.) Drive your point home.
Shriek: “Holy shit! You’re the fucking Antichrist!” while backing away and making a cross out of your index fingers.

HOW TO DRINK IN A BAR AFTER HOURS

1.) Subtly make your desires known.
Every five minutes or so, let out a big laugh, slap your knee and say, “Gee, I bet this joint will be even more fun after we kick the jerks and assholes out!”

2.) Help clean up.
As soon as you hear last call, grab a bar towel and start wiping down tables. Make sure you do this in a very poor and half-hearted fashion however, or you’ll make the cocktail waitress look bad.

3.) Ignore the obvious.
When the bartender looks right at you and yells ”Time for everyone to go! And I do mean everyone, Larry!” look over your shoulder and act kind of surprised that there would be another Larry standing right behind as you slink your way toward the restroom.

4.) Lend them a false sense of hope.
When they find you hiding in the restroom stall pretend you’re calling a cab and make sure you finish your conversation with the “dispatcher” by saying you’ll be waiting inside because you’re agoraphobic.

HOW TO SURVIVE AN INTERVENTION

1.) Brace yourself for a long struggle.
Tearfully thank them for their concern, then order three large pizzas with your favorite toppings because “this is going to take some time.” When the pizzas arrive, put your face in your hands and pretend to sob violently until they are paid for. Then wipe away your brave tears and really go to town on those pies because, hey, free pizza!

2.) Find a new villain . . .
When you’ve had your fill of pizza, hold up a pepperoni and say, “Here’s to my new sober life!” then cavalierly toss the pepperoni in the air, catch it in your mouth, then start choking violently.

3.) . . . and an old hero.
After letting them thump you on your back and freak out a little, lunge toward the nearest bottle of alcohol, take a long chug and immediately recover.

4.) Mock their motives.
When they try to take away the bottle (and they will), pull it close to your chest and holler: “Fuck you! This bottle just saved my goddamned life. You assholes just tried to murder me with defective pizza!”

HOW TO SURVIVE BEING BOUNCED FROM A BAR

1.) Attempt to leave on your own recognizance.
Put up your hands in the universal “It’s cool” gesture and announce that, indeed, “It is cool.” Usually the bouncer will point to the door at which time you should leave with dignity and perhaps a little smirk.

2.) Let him have your drink.
Any hopes of leaving with it are false.

3.) Do not resist the bouncer.
If you find yourself being physically “guided” toward the door, relax and let him steer you like an empty handtruck. While leaning back or attempting to seize weapons or drinks may seem like a fine idea, it will only cause him to steer you like a fully-loaded beer truck without power steering .

5.) Do not try to get out of the headlock.
The more you try, the tighter it will get.

6.) Prepare for landing.
When you are launched out the door, relax, cover your face and attempt to roll with the momentum. After impact you have the option of shrieking, “You busted my back! I’m paralyzed for life! For life!” but it will not get you back in the bar.

7.) Walk away.
Do not use rude gestures and bold statements to encourage the bouncer to join you outside because he might join you outside.

HOW TO AVOID BEING CUT OFF

1.) Tip well.
This way the bartender won’t feel so bad about cutting you off because he’ll think, “Hey, I made some pretty good tips tonight.”

2.) Always have your form of payment in hand.
Digging in your purse or wallet like a blind hog rooting for acorns will always cast doubt in the mind of a bartender.

3.) Make eye contact with the bartender when you order your drink.
Meeting the bartender’s gaze tells him you are fully confident he is going to serve you another drink and will distract his attention from the way you’re digging at your purse or wallet like a blind hog rooting for acorns.

4.) Do not attempt small talk while he makes your drink.
Clever knife tricks have never made a lunatic appear less dangerous and talking has never made a drunk appear more sober.

HOW TO FIX AN EIGHTY-SIX

1.) Call before stopping by.
Your physical presence will only bring back bad memories of the bad thing you did. Your voice, however, will only remind them of bad things you said, and words are much less hurtful than physical things like fire and bloodshed.

2.) Apologize even if you know you’re in the right.
Bartenders have a very limited understanding of the complexities of the human nervous system and will never believe it was a muscle spasm that caused you to grab a bottle of grain alcohol from behind the bar, smash it over the bouncer’s head and light his face on fire.

3.) Offer to make amends.
If you broke a table, offer to pay for it. Then, later, when they say, “Hey, when are you going to pay for that table?” just smile mysteriously and say, “Soon, my friend, soon.”

4.) Once you are reinstated, refrain from committing the same infraction right away.
Intersperse it with other bad things to make them forget the original bad thing because otherwise they’ll think, “If I remember correctly, that’s the second time that motherfucker has fucked up in this way!”

HOW TO FIND YOUR WAY HOME FROM A BAR

1.) Do not call a cab.
A cab will take at least fifteen minutes and every intoxicated individual knows he can walk the five miles to his apartment in much less time, especially if he takes time-saving shortcuts through busy rail yards and strange neighborhoods.

2.) Use major landmarks as guides.
If you can’t see any, the tops of radio towers and squad cars make for excellent vantage points.

3.) Never let on that you are lost.
When you wander past the same bar you left fifteen minutes ago, wave to the crowd standing outside and casually say, “Is it opening time yet? No? That’s cool.”

4.) If you find a house that looks a little like your house, then you should try to get inside.
If for some reason your keys don’t work you should pound vigorously on the door because when the cops arrive they will be more than willing to give you a ride.

5.) Walk briskly and with purpose.
Meandering slowly will attract law enforcement officials and muggers. Instead you should march in ever increasing concentric circles because according to the infallible laws of geometry you will eventually sober up enough to call a cab.

HOW TO RECOVER A RECOVERING ALCOHOLIC

1.) Hide alcohol around his house.
Especially the little “airplane” bottles of liquor, because they’re cute, delicious and damn near irresistible.

2.) Intersperse subtle pro-alcohol references throughout your conversations.
For example, instead of saying, “How are you today?” you should say, “How are you going to carry on without your best pal booze to comfort and guide you through this miserable shit storm that passes for modern living today?”

3.) If all else fails, hold an outervention.
Tie him securely to a chair (leave his drinking hand free) in front of a glass of milk and a glass of beer. Every time he reaches for the milk, rap him sharply across the snout with a rolled up copy of Modern Drunkard and in a firm voice say, “No! No!”

HOW TO DRINK WITH FOREIGNERS

1.) Be proud of your country but not chauvinistic.
If you start every sentence with “Well, back in the good old U.S. of A . . .” they will assume you are Americentric and ignorant of their nation’s culture. You should intersperse that phrase with “Well, I know you have your own fruity little way of doing things in your country, but . . .”

2.) Be aware of the local drinking customs.
The Belgians, for example, like to pound wine at football games, while the English prefer to pound Belgians. In Wales, on the other hand, they refer to intoxication as being “flogged” while in Iran they like to think of it as a good reason to “be flogged.”

3.) Bars are a great place to learn about the local culture.
Visit all the churches, public monuments and town squares as you like, but to truly absorb the unique nature and true soul of a country you need only spend a few nights in its humble pubs, taverns and cafes. This is also where you will find the prostitutes.

HOW TO CARRY A PASSED-OUT FRIEND

1.) Make sure he is actually unconscious.
Grip the back of his neck gently, turn his head slightly to the right and scream, “Wake up, asshole!” firmly and repeatedly into his ear.

2.) Lighten the load.
If there is money in his pockets be sure to remove it because money can buy rounds of drinks and rounds of drinks are quite heavy so you should drink them because they’re much easier to carry when they’re inside your stomach.

3.) Use your head, not your back.
When the load is sufficiently lightened, place your arms firmly around the barmaid and ask if she’ll drop off your friend on your way to her home.

HOW TO SURVIVE A WORLD-CLASS HANGOVER

1.) Fend off any feelings of guilt.
If there is anyone nearby ask them why they let you drink so much.

2.) Get some exercise.
Vigorously punch your fingers at your telephone, briskly call off work, then warm down by wandering around your apartment looking for your keys and wallet.

3.) Rehydrate your body.
Refrain from drinking liquor, as it is mostly alcohol. Instead, drink beer as it is mostly beer.

4.) Wait it out.
By the end of Happy Hour you will no longer be hungover, because you will be drunk.

HOW TO ARGUE A BAR TAB

1.) Start happy then turn very sad.
As soon as you look at the bottom line, bulge your eyes comically and jump like you’ve been goosed with a cattle prod.

2.) Ask your friends for support.
Show the tab to your friends like it’s a winning lottery ticket that just magically turned into a piece of paper that says obscene things about your mother.

3.) Inform the bartender the tab is incorrect.
Bend over, offer your posterior to the bartender and say, “Since you’re raping me, why don’t you finish the job!” Try not to lose your balance and fall on your face because that will make you appear silly.

4.) Ask to see the manager.
Do not act surprised when the manager looks just like the fellow who poured all your drinks. Instead say, “See, the main problem is you misspelled ‘Guinness.’ That just freaked me out a little, ‘cause I’m sorta Irish on my cousin’s side.”

HOW TO SHOTGUN A BEER

1.) Using a sharp object, punch a hole in the side of a can of beer about half an inch from the bottom.
Be certain the can has not been shook as this will create a “spouting whale effect” which is only funny if it happens to someone else.

2.) Place your mouth over the hole and point the top of the can straight up.
Make sure your lips achieve a seal around the hole and place a finger on the pop top or “trigger”.

3.) Pull the “trigger” and let the beer flow smoothly into your sinus cavity.
When the beer shoots out of your nostrils in an impressive geyser, try to aim at something good at absorbing liquids, like cashmere or suede.

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Frank Kelly Rich
Editor/Publisher of Modern Drunkard Magazine.