Archives for the month of: November, 2012

hangover drunk alcohol fear

I’ve got the alcohol fear.

When people say they’re afraid of falling, what they actually mean is that they’re afraid of landing. I have the same relationship with booze. The falling part is ridiculously fun, but then I undoubtedly land (with increasing savagery) in a pit of soggy, festering hangover. And it’s the landing that has made me very, very scared of the falling.

7 years ago as a university fresher I took my liver on a wild ride, and didn’t let it off. Much like a kid who tries to release their safety harness after a pant-wettingly terrifying go on Oblivion, only to find they chose the dud seat and they have to go round and round. For 5 years.

My liver chose the dud seat.

I can’t remember the number of times I woke up not remembering the night before. I’d spend hours trying to put the pieces of the rum-drizzled puzzle back together, only to learn 6 years later that you don’t actually make memories when under the influence, so I wasted valuable ‘feeling sorry for myself’ time scrabbling about in the far corners of my brain wondering why I had apparently replaced my heels with novelty Bart Simpson slippers at some point during the night. Then I would prop myself up long enough to get a 24 box of chicken nuggets down my throat, before slipping back into a coma until Deal or No Deal.

Suddenly, after years of blissful substance abuse (alcohol and worcester sauce Wheat Crunchies) I entered the real world; where there was a requirement to be mildly functional during the day. I learnt this the hard way, once curling into a foetal position on the toilet floor of my workplace and catching 15 minutes of sleep. My colleagues spent those 15 minutes with their heads out the window gasping for fresh air, before I came back in and breathed sambuca on everyone.

This experience, and several others of the same ilk, have slowly but surely conditioned me to be wary of the beast that is booze. I like to think of myself as the human equivalent of Pavlov’s dogs. If, of course, the dogs had been fed vodka jelly until they were convinced they were really very good at doing ‘the worm’.



So Movember (the month formerly known as November) is upon us.

On October 31st, humans with both an X and a Y chromosome up and down the country took to their sinks, razor blade in hand, and shaved their fuzzy faces. Emerging fresh-faced and boylike, they took a last longing glance at their smooth upper lip and bode it farewell, for the next 30 days will see a testosterone-fuelled conquest to grow the most manly lip-fringe possible.

Since its humble beginnings down under (Australia, not someone’s trouser area), Movember has raised hundreds of millions for prostate cancer, generating $79.3 million last year alone. Mo Bros (the ones growing the tash) and Mo Sistas (the ones encouraged to ‘help out’, presumably by stroking the upper lip of males in a downwards manner in order to stimulate hair follicles) the world over unite for the very worthy cause of ‘Changing the face of men’s health’, and the faces of our male colleagues and friends along with it. 

Prostate cancer is a scarily unrecognised killer, and therefore requires all the attention a mass murderer of this scale deserves. And yet, I have a sneaking suspicion that the Mo Bros, whilst of course supporting such a worthy cause, aren’t solely in it for charitable purposes. Instead, what Movember has ingeniously tapped into is the repressed urge within every post-pubescent male to prove they are capable of sprouting a biscuit duster mightier than their neighbour’s. A challenge if by some strange turn of events their neighbour is Brian Blessed or Santa Claus, but one they are prepared to take nonetheless.

Ever since the first 14 year old boy in Year 9 proudly waggled his hair-adorned lip at his classmates, a ripple of broken voices and middle-of-face hair growth was sent out, eliciting a competition of pure rugged manliness ever since. Movember provides the ultimate occasion for men to regress to their 14 year old counterparts, and even those in corporate environments are given the nod to furnish their faces, because remember – it’s all in the name of charity. 



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