BECKY GARCIA — How To Drink Responsibly

GUEST BLOG: Becky Garcia


I’m not a professional alcoholic. I am, however, a Good Time Connoisseur. Maybe you like to drink, but I LOVE to drink.  And though it may seem like a silly thing to brag about, I’ve been told I’m quite good at it.  How did I get “good at drinking”?  Of course I learned the hard way a few times: hunched over countless toilets, at several outdoor music festivals, and even all over a friend’s shoes.  But sometimes you have to push your body to the limit to find out just where the limit is.  So after trial and error and plain ol’ years of experience, I’m here to help you enjoy yourself (within reason) with tips that have seemed to work for me.  Hopefully you can apply them in the happiest of hours.


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Only have 1 drink per hour. This is a sophisticated pace. Pound conversations not beer. Maybe you can finally find out what your friends’ middle names are.


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Have a tall glass of water between each drink.  With each glass, it’s a good time to check in with yourself. Are you laughing at something that normally you wouldn’t find slightly funny?  Also, get off your ass.  If you’ve been sitting the whole time you’ve been drinking, you don’t really have a good gauge on how much the alcohol might be affecting you.  Walk around, work the room.  Let the blood distribute evenly throughout your body.  Don’t lie to yourself – ask “Am I walking okay?”


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Don’t get cut off, cut yourself off.  Sometimes I’ll close out a tab at the top of the night.  I’ll tell the bartender, and you gotta stick with the same bartender all night, “Please bill me for 3 Hefeweizens (or whatever I’m in the mood for) and I’ll drink them throughout the night. Don’t let me have more than that.  Thank you. ” They get it. Trust me, you look super cool and responsible when you do this. Tip well!


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If you tend to do idiotic things when you’re drunk and can’t trust yourself – hand over your keys (and your phone) to a friend.  Sometimes we have to save ourselves from ourselves.  Obviously, don’t drink and drive, dummy.  But even texting can be dangerous. Would you say it sober?  Not sure?  Either way, wait until you’re completely back to being yourself to send that message.  Whatever you think you have to say, know that it can always wait.


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Don’t drink and “just ya know, hang out and watch a movie or sumthin” with someone you’re attracted to but still haven’t gotten to know yet.  Oh, I don’t know. Sometimes you make plans to see a new art film like “Holy Motors” with someone you’re somewhat interested in, and you also happen to have a ton of leftover alcohol in your apartment from a birthday that just passed, so you invite him over to hang beforehand.  Oh, and you’re not exactly sure what the deal is with this person or how you even feel at all since you’re pretty freshly-single but still madly in love with your ex of 4 years. This is a confusing time for you.  And since you didn’t have the “true college experience” you’re not really sure how many parts vodka-to-Redbull you should drink out of a very large container…multiple times.  If you’d like to be more than just something casual with this guy, STAY OUT OF THE HOUSE.  Or go ahead and not listen to me — just know that there’s a good chance you’re going to compromise your integrity and standards, and possibly miss out on something that though cool in that particular moment, could’ve actually been substantial. Maybe?


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Never leave the pack. You came together, you should leave together.  While this is a big fat DUH as to why this is important for females, I wonder if bros ever get a little bummed out when one of their own leaves the group.  Answer: never. It’s like “hey dude, I thought tonight WE were hanging out?” No? Whatever.  I won’t even get started on impaired judgment leading to risky behavior.  The best protection is abstinence…tonight.  Go home with your buddies.


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We’re not all cash money millionaires with disposable income to afford Uber, Lyft, etc. With the price you pay for a ride sometimes you could just convince yourself to drink less and save that money for your next night out.  Try to tolerate yourself.  Politely humor your company and surroundings, and stop drinking an hour or 2 before you drive home. You can do it.


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Here’s a great alternative to the bar scene.  Call up a friend. Put on some workout gear. And fill up your thermoses…with booze.  You’ll be working off the booze as you’re enjoying it!  I can’t even count how many times I’ve had a nice talk & walk, exploring neighborhoods and landscapes under the influence.  There are so many pros to this.  The cops won’t suspect a thing!  To them you’re just a health nut taking in a leisurely stroll and staying hydrated. Just try not to look so happy when they drive by.  Remember, you’re exercising.  And finally, there’s no temptation to get behind the wheel.


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Experiment in the safety of your own home first. My parents were super rad. They let me drink at home – insisted, in fact.  (Yes, I was underage at the time. Don’t be jealous of my liberal upbringing.) They figured I was gonna do it anyway, so rather than get into some whiskey err I mean risky business, I should just do some taste testing in a safe environment. Thanks Mom & Dad! So stay under your own roof and discover what your drink is. Figure out which one works best with your body chemistry.


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