Friday, January 19, 2007


Sometimes I worry about being an alcoholic. My mother was, her sister and husband both were, apparently my dad drank heavily before he left my mom... I have the genes and the environmental history. And I like to drink. I like the "buzz" I get from a couple of glasses of wine. I'm a lightweight when it comes to alcohol; anything over two and I'm tipsy.

The urban dictionary defines tipsy as: The state when you are drinking alchohol in which you are past light headedness but before being drunk. or... Tipsy is when you're buzzin from alcohol, but you're not hammered yet. That's good... not being hammered is a good thing.

I equate tipsy with lightheadedness, in all its manifestations... physical effects: the easy, dizzy, sort of walking-on-air feeling, where I'm aware of everything around me but in a pleasant hazy way. Psychological effects: an increased ability to do those things I normally find difficult. (ie: I had wine once before a bell choir practice and played better than I ever had. I was so relaxed that I was not intimidated by the music, and my inhibitions made way for whatever natural talent I had.) It's easier for me to talk to strangers at parties, easier to sing in front of a group.

My mother used to point to people with red noses, and say "That man's a boozer." I asked her how she knew, and she said it had something to do with the capillaries bursting in your nose when you drank a lot. It's ironic that she drank (a lot) but never exhibited the red-nose syndrome. I have a red nose. When I get teary-eyed, when I'm angry, my nose turns red. I look in the mirror on a morning after I've had wine and sure enough, my nose is red. (I also have a red nose on a morning after I've drunk diet coke, so I'm not sure it's conclusive evidence.)

Am I an alcoholic? Do I drink every day? No. Do I need to drink? No. Do I want to drink when it's been a stressful day? Yes. Do I want to drink when I'm out with friends? Often. So where is the line and how will I know if I'm in danger of crossing it? Do I want to give up drinking to find out? No. (Maybe that was the line.)


Anonymous said...

Great post -- and something you probably want to really take a close look at, since it would help to explain some things. Thanks for the honesty!

Anonymous said...

And, I quote:

“It is well to remember that there are five reasons for drinking: the arrival of a friend, one's present or future thirst, the excellence of the wine, or any other reason.”
- Latin proverb

“Alcohol is the anesthesia by which we endure the operation of life.”
-George Bernard Shaw

And I have two more words for you:

Colorado Shooters

Claire Joy said...

Remind me again... what's in a Colorado Shooter?

merryn said...

I don't think the red nose is conclusive. I believe that it may often be a medical condition (rosacea?).

You'd probably be better off giving up diet coke...

Anonymous said...

You remember, or do you?

Tequila and dill pickle juice

Sandy, csj said...

Some powerful questions you are asking...God bless you on your journey.

And just a little thought I had for you....people who don't have a problem with bananas don't usually spend time wondering if they have a problem with bananas...

Sandy, sober 21 years and counting...