Monday, September 3, 2012

Drinking Exhibits Status -

Your choice (my choice, either way) of booze--even the word "booze"--is an indicator of social status, both self-perceived and actual.

For example, understanding the subtleties between types of red wine, particularly descriptive words for flavor, smell, dryness, and such, allows one to exhibit learned knowledge of previous consumption, expertise, and capacity for a lot of imbibing over time.

What does this mean?

It means you indirectly have the money and wherewithal to go out and become educated and actualize that education.  It means that, for instance, you are more likely to also express yourself with a tightly linked cluster of indicators that also crop up when talking of wine: travel, for instance, cuisine, and topics related to refined luxury.

The take home point is this: if you've been an alcoholic who is now cleaning up your game, and you decide to stop drinking, you are affirmatively stepping away from the circle of intimates who you've tried very hard to become part of for a number of years.

This isn't less relevant than if you've been drinking cheap beer, but note that even the number of microbrewed beers has increased exponentially in the last few years.  The reason isn't just that people intrinsically love their microbrewed beer.  It is as much a part of belonging to a group as it is drinking a microbrewed beer.

Showing team loyalty is paramount.

Which makes cessation of drinking all the more difficult.  It isn't just that you've decided to park in a different lot, or to use a different internet subscriber.  It is very much that you've decided to drastically change your social world, which likely provides most of the significant feedback onto your own self-identity that you have, absent family (or even including family), and it just isn't as meaningful to hoist a "cheers" to a great trip with a glass of ice water.

That is one of the social dollar signs that you must extract from your budget if you wish to get sober.

And you must do it now if you've decided to become sober.

I'm sorry.

I wish I could tell you that you will be able to continue as you have.  But you will not.  The sooner you accept this and stop trying so hard to fit into the old mold, the better for us all.

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