You can’t drink yourself smarter. You can’t drink yourself more interesting or talented. You can’t drink yourself into a new life. That’s the truth.
But that doesn’t mean I believe it.
My phone keeps trying to call someone at a series of zeroes and pound signs. Who does it know at that number, and what’s so urgent? Whatever it is, it’s got to be more important than anything I’ve got going on.
A while ago I had to go to the doctor’s to get a few things checked out. For this or that reason (by which I mean it’s none of your business) I found myself getting a series of x-rays. In the radiology clinic you sign in and they give you a piece of colored paper which says, “We will no longer be calling you by name. Please listen for your number. You are…” and then a line with your number. I was 56 that day. It felt like something out of a dystopic novel; a vision of the future where our identities are stripped away and we’ve become nothing more than codes and cyphers.
Mostly though, I just felt like, “Yeah, I’m 56.” It was a nice excuse to feel uncomplicated for a while — in the sense that we’re all complicated, not just me in particular. I’m complicated, but I’m not really complex.
I’m thinking about this a little at a party I’m at, because I feel like I’m being ranked or numbered here, too. And I know that’s a shitty thing to think. A shitty little stupid thing, but it’s how I feel. When I go to parties I almost always have the same agenda: get drunk, be fun, have sex. In that order. Really, in that order. I’d be more disappointed if I got laid and never got a chance to drink a beer. It just doesn’t feel as good. Food’s probably on par with sex, though; I just put it first because it’s more likely.