They say people are drinking more in New Orleans these days, and I believe it. I’ve certainly been doing my part. I’ve been drinking plenty. I justify this by telling myself I’m stressed out, and that a drink or three will help me relax and temporarily alleviate the anxieties associated with living in a disaster zone.
I wouldn’t say it’s become a problem — at least not yet. But I’ve been keeping an eye on it. I always feel the need to check myself periodically, so I was planning to give up alcohol for Lent, like I did last year. Just after Mardi Gras, which is just around the corner. It’s hard to give up drinking just before Mardi Gras, after all.
But last night I was a little shocked to realize that I put away almost half a fifth of Wild Turkey 101. And a glass of wine, too. Just in one evening.
The good news is today I’ve got a creeping hangover. Not so bad when I first rolled out of bed, but getting worse throughout the morning. Headache and nausea. I actually had to go home from work for a few hours and sleep it off. A couple hours napping, then I was feeling almost normal, and back in the office right after lunch.
I call the hangover good news, because if I didn’t have a hangover after drinking that much bourbon, it would mean I have built up even more of a tolerance. And increased tolerance is one of the measures of addiction. Furthermore, the hangover also puts me on notice: I can’t wait until after Mardi Gras to check myself. I need to back it off now. And the hangover actually makes that easier, because right now the thought of alcohol is somewhat revolting.
But it’s quite embarrassing that this interfered with my ability to perform my job. I feel foolish and ashamed. I should probably keep this information to myself. Certainly I shouldn’t post it to my blog. After all, my boss reads my blog. I sure wouldn’t want him to read this confession. That wouldn’t do. Wouldn’t do at all.
Especially since there are also those of us who’d like to be able to be at our job!
The mood is grim around here, despite some chipper billboards.
Perhaps a switch from alcohol to caffeine?
I ate at Morton’s yesterday. Overpriced, but good meat. Terrible salad.
Emerils tonight (is that touristy?). It was very very good.
Looking forward to tomorrow..
I don’t think you’ve got a drinking problem until you’re drinking alone. So as long as Xy is around, you’re fine. If she’s not around, just call me.
Editor B! Just discovered your blog, and have very much enjoyed reading your observations and reports from post-Katrina NOLA. Your photos too!
As for self-induced sickness, may I recommend single malt Scotch, as opposed to Bourbon? You’ll feel better next day, guaranteed, and it tastes better too! Some of my personal favorites (in the reasonably affordable category) are Glenmorangie and Macallan. Also of course, mixing wine (the grape) and whiskey (the grain) is generally not a good idea. I’m told the Bible says something about that, but I can’t point to the exact book and verse…
I wanted to send you a link to a song I wrote and recorded, and posted on the internet. It’s available free as a bird to all interested. Listenable, downloadable, all that good stuff. It’s called New Orleans 2005. You might like it, you might not. Anyway, as its subject is your town, I thought you might like to at least listen and give it a shot:
If you like it, well, drop me a line and lemme know! Hell, if you DON’T like it, drop me a line anyway, tell me why! I love feedback.
By the way, several years back I played Tipitina’s with my old band, Chunk. You go there much? Is it open for business these days?
your reader in Tokyo,
One more thought: When drinking interferes with other aspects of life — like work — it’s a problem by definition.
Do feel powerless? Out of control?
Health insurance is a beautiful thing because you don’t have to hit rock bottom to use it.
You’re fired, Bart. Now get back to work!!!
I bet everyone in the whole city feels powerless and out of control, but not because of alcohol!
What about when work interferes with drinking? Is that a problem too? The Times Picayune had a story about this a while back called Pandora’s Bottle:
i seem to remember one of those Lent blogs–in which you realized you were not off to a good start when you automatically ordered a sazerac at dinner!
[just pointing out that i read&retain your well-penned thoughts—-NO judgment coming from me! Since you know B-ton, i bet you can guess my ‘self-medication of choice’! No hangovers, but a curiously empty pantry……]