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December 21, 2011

It’s about time we have an alcohol update.

When I arrived in Korea, I had never drank much alcohol at all in my life and never been truly drunk. The first night I was here, I was trying to learn the intricate secrets of Korean dining while staring at this shot of Soju on the hopelessly crowded table. It wasn’t the best way to be introduced to the country, the Soju, or alcohol in general, but I was a sport and I partook.

I’ve had a few more drinks here and there, in various situations. I still don’t see the appeal.

A few weeks ago the staff at my hagwon went out to dinner, since a member of management was leaving to become a director at a new school elsewhere in Korea. Everyone got ridiculously hammered and ended up at a Noraebang, which is like Karaoke if it was in private rooms instead of a bar. I was “just going with it” like a champ. I watched all the teachers, managers, and secretaries doing the most awful drunken renditions of various Korean and American pop songs for a good hour or so, just wishing I could escape the situation gracefully.

And I had had a few. I was uncomfortably intoxicated at this point (not sick or anything, but definitely not having any more), and I was nowhere near the level of drunken idiocy that they were. Everyone was coming over to me, asking if I was okay, asking what’s up, telling me I looked miserable.

<Kevin’s drunken inner voice will be presented in italics, for your viewing pleasure>

“No no guys, I’m fine, really”. But I’m never going to be like you.

Then I started to spiral around in my head, thinking about the strength of my inhibitions and about letting go of them. I was trying to figure out if I could ever leave my own head for long enough to do something that I knew I would regret the next morning. I wondered if my inhibitions were so welded to my personality that if I ever truly let go, I’d lose my grasp on everything.

Then I thought, why can’t I let go of my inhibitions though? Even in this 60-70% drunk state, why can’t I feel the unbelievable fun in the air right now? Am I fundamentally an inhibited person? Listen to all these questions, man! These people are NOT asking these questions right now! 

I’m the only thing I can control in this world. Why would I ever want to lose control of that? Why can’t you? It’s so easy for them.

This was only singing like an idiot, too. This was leaving aside questions of true adult drunkenness. I realize this is child’s play that most of you got out of your systems when you were still not allowed to drink legally.

But I just don’t see the fun in this. I’ve been the only sober person at a party full of drunks. It’s fucking awful, but all of them will tell you, while leaning on your shoulder way too hard and with booze on their breath, “Dude, you just need to be drunk too! Then it’s fun!” No, not even then.

I think fun, for me anyway, is still a very simple and childlike concept. Stumbling around, vomiting, and doing things that you’ll hate yourself for doing never seemed like fun to me.

Hey, at least I’m giving it the ol’ college try. More alcohol updates in the future… maybe.


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One Comment
  1. James permalink

    “I was feelin’ pretty good falalala, takin’ my time on the lalalala…”

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