“It’s a great advantage not to drink among hard drinking people.”
― F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby
Considering the legacy of alcoholism that Fitzgerald left behind, I’d say he knew a thing or two about the benefits of steering clear of the sauce.
While a first-hand witness to the liquor boom of the roaring twenties, he still couldn’t have possibly imagined the lengths to which the alcohol beverage industry would grow in modern times. And the legions of careers that would spring forth from its midst, employing people whose entire lifestyle generally revolves around booze in one way or the other.
While it’s totally not my thing, I do understand the sentiment behind temperance. There’s been quite a few times where I’ve arrived a little too late to a party to find everyone completely inebriated and quickly realized that being the only sober one in the rooms was to my complete disadvantage. Drunk people while you are sober = uber annoying.
Just ask any other wine and spirit wholesale distributor rep or supplier. Much to their chagrin, one of the many facets of their job involves regularly standing behind a table pouring taste after taste of booze for the masses, occasionally peppering in product information should the guests be gracious or sober enough to feign interest.
And when your entire day revolves around the marketing and sales of alcohol beverages, you are bound to have some of it leak over into your day to day consumption. For research purposes, of course.
Now three and a half months into growing a tiny human again, I am seriously disliking having to be the teetotaler all the time. And how ironic that I choose now to start a blog semi-revolving around my job in the booze industry. Lame. Complete and total sobriety out of nowhere is a lot like someone jamming on the brakes in the car unexpectedly. Its jarring.
In general, both my husband and I have sharply decreased our booze consumption from the past. Mostly it’s just a result of getting older, having a small child and not really having the time to really go out. But the true attribution is that our capacity to handle hangovers has completely diminished. If I have literally anything to do the next day with a hangover, forget it. Zero productivity happening.
But even with my more recent tempered consumption, I still enjoyed the adventure of choosing a bottle of wine to pair with dinner. (And drinking half of it while cooking) Or sipping on some Japanese single malt after a stressful day. Or just sitting on the couch drinking beers. Sigh. I miss beer.
And now, nada. Nothing. Zilch.
But everyday I have to talk about it, sell it, smell it and occasionally swish and spit it if it’s something that cannot be missed.
And fuck you Instagram and all your sexy food and wine photos. Suddenly, all of my friends restaurant and home cocktail photos are depressing to me.
The only reprieve I’ve had thus far was in early pregnancy when my morning sickness made everything booze related make me want to barf. But now that has almost gone too and back are the days of making googly eyes at cocktail menus and wine racks.
Like a true sport, Andrew has decided he won’t drink at home during my pregnancy. Not that he can’t, mind you. He just hasn’t. Solidarity style. And as a never-wavering optimist, he regularly points out how much money we save from not buying beer. He’s a good dude.
Luckily for him, however, his love affair with booze has never run as deep as mine. He has never read historic cocktail making books for fun, sat through hours and hours of wine and spirit classes, studied soil composition and climate patterns of different geographical regions, learned the intricacies of spirit distillation, wandered around a vineyard after sunrise and watched the dew drops glisten off of nearly perfect grapes, or came close to nirvana after tasting Krug Clos du Mesnil.
No. No, that would be me.
Don’t feel too sad for me, though. I’ve got the rest of my life to savor the world’s many wonderful beverages. But for the next year and a half or so, I’ll just be redirecting all my passion into helping this new baby be as cool and healthy as our other daughter. First as a baby hotel, then as the baby’s restaurant.
I am service oriented, after all.