Why you don’t have to party it up in Vegas

Dearest Reader,

In a moment of intellectual weakness, I recently indulged in watching the first Hangover movie to forget about adult life by watching other adults completely ruin theirs. I have been to Vegas in the past, and while I enjoyed my brief time there, I am sad to say I didn’t wake up with Mike Tyson’s tiger in my bathroom.

A few days later, I sat for lunch with a couple of friends, and as the wine began to take over, we stopped to appreciate our levels of freedom, and the fact that as single ladies with no kids, we could literally pick up our things right now and go to Vegas.

In fact, we could stay for two months if we so pleased, we could do whatever the hell we wanted over there, we could gamble away our money because we worked for it and owe nothing to nobody, and we could hire all the strippers we wanted, and we could party party party all night long!

It took a moment of silence to realise that while we could certainly do all these things, it sounded like a horrible idea.

“We don’t like to party party party,” one friend said.

“This is true,” I admitted.

“And we don’t like to gamble, and if we want to watch a show we can watch it here, and if we want to see a bunch of shit-faced dickheads looking for hookers, we could also see them here,” I added.

“Exactly. Instead, we like to do this,” said my friend, pointing at our table and surroundings.

By this, she means of course sitting by the water in the sun over a boozy lunch. There is food to share, there is music, there are other people to observe and most importantly, there are alcoholic beverages of which some are pink and sparkle.

Yes, we officially calmed down a notch, I thought. But it is because we had those party times and frankly, we are just over it. And I’m finally ok with it!

So we quickly moved away from planning a getaway that would be filled with depressing gambling addicts, mild sexual harassment by Bachelor party crowds and vomiting at Caesar’s Palace.

Instead, we dreamed of places we could go to where some handsome young men would serve us beverages by the ocean and massage us while we fabulously enjoy the sun. We would then have naps and repeat this at dinner time.

And why pay for chewed-up strippers in Vegas if you could be sipping a Mojito somewhere in the Caribbean while observing beachgoers smear coconut oil all over themselves right in front of you?

We are women for God’s sake. If you smile and wave at said oiled-up beachgoer, they’ll come over and try to entertain you with pick-up lines, drinks and compliments, maybe even flexing their muscles to impress, so that’s a wonderful show to enjoy.

In short, calming down is awesome – it’s the classier version of the younger you. And from what I imagine, it smells of coconuts and tastes of Caribbean rum.

No alcohol is no solution, either

Dearest Reader,

It is common knowledge that alcohol solves none of your problems, and that it is unhealthy to deal with emotional distress by consuming mind-numbing substances.

I too try to deal with life as it comes, with the help of rational thinking, planning, organising and patience. But there are moments and things that you have no control over, and you know you need a strong drink to digest what has just happened to you. Because after all, when you have no solution, not drinking doesn’t help, either.

The first instance are financial kicks in the balls. This can range from backhanded pay increases of $1 per hour, which are more of an insult than an incentive, to rent increases for the home you are currently residing in.

The upsetting part about both is that there is not much you can do in either situation, other than leave the job or home. And we both know, dearest reader, that that’s too much of a hassle. What is easier is to crack open a beer and cheers to this crappy day!

Another example is when your partner is testing your patience. They might be having a bad day, they might be unreasonable or they might just be beyond the usual level of bitchiness.

Here’s the thing. You can’t tell them that they are being an ass right now because they’ll hold it over your head forever, nor can you sink to their level and be equally unreasonable because it will escalate into unimaginable depths of ugliness. So you just sit, quietly, and take it, while you sip on something that makes you feel warm and fuzzy inside.

Finally, big, massive, unanticipated news. Your sibling is getting married. Or even worse, your parent is getting divorced to marry someone else. Someone died. Someone broke up. With you. Or worse of all, you find out you accidentally fell pregnant, which is a double whammy because now you can’t even have a drink to digest this piece of shit information.

So, when life really is testing you, and there is nothing you can do to mitigate the problem or make the situation better in any way, there is no reason not to drink.

Cheers to life, in all its God damn weirdness!

Rules of Eating Out

Dearest Reader,

I used to be a big fan of eating out in restaurants for any occasion, with family, friends or on a date, and enjoy the experience.

However, as I slowly blossom into a real grown-up with limited patience for social etiquette that gets in the way of my happiness, I recently got tired of the rules. The rules of eating out.

If you are a guy, what you order on a date can really make or break this outing. For instance, if you order white wine, that really sends a message. If you order bottled beer, that’s also a strong message. If you order a salad with your white wine, you might as well order her another guy too.

The same applies with going out with your other male friends. You still can’t order white wine with salad, and potentially a dessert, unless you’re very secure in your masculinity.

But what if you really want white wine and a salad, and a pink raspberry panna cotta? Well, the only place you can really have that is at home. So might as well eat there.

If you’re a girl, you also can’t order freely on a date. If you had a busy day and you finally want to relax with a beer, you’ll come over as ‘too butch’. For the same reason, you can’t order a steak. Apparently, you also can’t order a pizza and eat all of it. After finishing mine, I was once told “Wow, I’ve never seen a girl eat a whole pizza before!!” and needless to say, that made me feel like a freak.

If you’re out with other girls, you need to pretend that you’re fine with tapas, with sharing ridiculously small amounts of overpriced food, because we lie to each other and judge each other harshly if we eat normal quantities.

So you go home and eat properly after dinner.

Regardless of your gender, there are many general taboos.

For instance, nachos are not considered proper food.

If you order garlic bread, people automatically think you ordered it to share it with them, even if you didn’t. If you order fries, you have to offer them some, and nobody stops at one fry.

If everyone orders a burger and you order the salmon steak, that’ll make you look too fancy. If everyone orders the salmon steak and you order the burger, it’ll make you look cheap and like you don’t have any idea what a healthy diet looks like.

If you’ve finished your alcoholic beverage faster than everyone else, you don’t get to order a new one until everyone else is ready, otherwise you’ll be considered an alcoholic. If nobody else wants a second round, you can’t show your disappointment but instead go home and drink alone, in the kitchen.

If everyone finishes their drink before you, they pressure you into drinking more quickly, and if you don’t want a second round, they’ll openly shout their disappointment at you.

As a result, I only choose to go out with those friends who know my dislike for small portions and sharing. On dates, I don’t try to be the salad-eating princess; if you can’t handle a woman with real appetite, you must not call me again. And in all other instances, I excuse myself from the social gathering and rather sit at home, eating and drinking whatever I want, at whatever speed I want.