Recently, I reread my 2019 column on surviving the holidays. Basically, it was the gold standard of sage advice: “Just say no,” “Expect the worst” and, alcoholically speaking, “Pace yourself.” But it occurred to me that this year, as we enter our 10th month of a pandemic, many of the chaos and stress-inducing factors of typical December madness will be, if not nonexistent, then at least substantially lessened. Which means, you’re already fully prepared!
Think about it. All the time-sucking, gift-giving, insipid social gatherings that drive us introverts to drink are canceled! No three-hour, off-key choir concerts, no awkward office parties and certainly no embarrassingly obnoxious family reunions. And even if a stupid-head decides to throw a subversive get-together, you’ve got a fool-proof declination excuse: “Test results pending.” Basically, the need for the first of the three aforementioned guidelines is null and void.
As for the second, puh-lease. If you haven’t learned by now that each month of 2020 can and will remain a complete disaster, then contact me immediately with the name of your dealer. “Expect the worst” has been my mantra since March, but I’m certainly open to some good, old-fashioned, opioid-induced naiveté.
Finally, I would bet my firstborn that many a liver have hardened substantially over the last year. Between teepee shortages, government-mandated quarantines and presidential shenanigans, most folks have been over-imbibing for quite awhile. I predict the next few weeks will be amateur hour, frankly, with nary a slurred “Merry Christmas” to be found. Pace yourself? More like, “Carry on.”
So, godspeed, friends, and remember to trust your training. I’ll see you on the other side.