It’s past 10:30PM on a Monday night and I have to be up at 6AM so I can get my fiancee’s son ready for school. But that’s not stopping me from lighting some candles, turning on the fake fireplace, popping open my beautiful gold MacBook Air, and having a glass of FireBall whiskey. Yes…the joy of drinking.

I guess I’ll launch this bitch by saying I’m not an alcoholic or anything of the sort. I enjoy casual drinking, social drinking, and of course, drinking to help me sleep. It’s not something I do all the time, but when I do indulge myself, I typically find myself both relaxed and happy. If done correctly…that’s to say if it’s not “over done”, drinking can be such an enjoyable part of someones life. There are rules though that guide the responsibleness and pleasurability associated with the activity.

Rule #1 (Don’t over do it)

Firstly and most importantly, don’t go too far. Going too far results in not remembering parts of an evening, followed by “throwing up” parts of the next morning. Why put yourself through that? Your body is your access to this life, and you only get one chance in this world. Don’t waste your time engaging in shenanigans that you won’t even remember. Plus, if your around anyone else who isn’t drinking, how do you think they feel having to deal with your sorry ass! And trust me, I’ve been there. Remember the solar eclipse we had a year or so ago? Well…I sure as hell don’t. The morning started early and we were well positioned for about two and a half minutes of totality come early afternoon. But that early morning also kicked off with mimosas, and then more, and more, and then Smirnoff, and so on. My two friends had to literally carry me using my arms and legs. They moved me around in the same fashion you would see a dead body being moved on television. While my friends got an amazing view of the eclipse, I was somewhere on the ground rolling around and moaning through my drunkenness.

Rule #2 (Enjoy it)

In any situation, if drinking is not enjoyable to you, then stop immediately. Don’t force something down your throat that you think tastes disguising. Don’t force yourself to drink anything if you don’t feel well, or simply don’t feel like drinking to begin with. The first time I ever consumed alcohol was the last time I ever had a hangover of that magnitude. In my very young and thus far alcohol free body, I managed to down half a bottle of vodka, regardless of how it tasted to me. I just wanted to see what it would be like to be wasted. The answer came about 3-5 hours later when I was puking uncontrollably in the pine trees behind my house. And by the crack of dawn, I felt like death warmed over.

Rule #3 (Parties)

The time comes for most of us, where we have the chance, or many chances to party like it’s the last night of our lives. You have to be careful though. You never know what could happen. You could find yourself hooking up with what you think is the hottest piece of ass around, but in reality it’s an STD. Or maybe you end up making a complete fool of yourself. Again, I’ve been there (not the STD part though). It started as a dorm party at my friends apartment in college. With any and every type of drink imaginable, I was positioned for any kind of night that I wanted to have. My night ended up with me being found in the closet, almost completely naked with a vacuum that never worked again…But that was early in the night…I woke up the next morning to find myself laying in the hallway, wearing nothing but my underwear, and covered in just about everything that had once resided in my friends refrigerator. Pepperonis over my nipples, pieces of cheese stuck to me using shaving cream, a stick of butter in my underwear, and a full bowl of cool whip was stuck/hardened to my hair/head. Nuff said…

These are parts of my past that I don’t mind sharing with anyone who wants to listen, and they even make for some great laughs with my friends. But the truth is that I enjoy drinking now more than ever. I do so responsibly these days, and I very much enjoy it. Having a glass of whiskey with a friend, enjoying a night cap before bed, or the occasional glass of wine with a meal at an upscale restaurant. It’s part of who I am, but it has no control over who I am. I am the one in control, and I truly believe that there is joy in drinking.

Yes, yes, I know…alcohol is a poison to our bodies. But I don’t smoke, I don’t do drugs, and in the world we currently live in, that’s really not saying much, because I’m at risk of cancer with just about anything I come in contact with on a daily basis. The world is full of things that can kill me, so I choose to live how I want, and I encourage anyone reading this to do the same.