Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Le Bláth Úr, Faoi Ghrian Nua

My overindulgences often leave me with a headache. I think of them as overenthusiasms. Too much wine, cheese, chocolate, fucking. Too long spent with my nose stuck in a book. Happy pursuits all, though I apply myself to them with a little too much gusto on occasion. But on Saturday night I drank too many margaritas and almost poisoned myself. I could make excuses and say it was the sugar, the salt, the special offers, but really it was my obnoxious overconfidence and complete lack of common sense and self control that saw me in such a state. I don't get sloppy or obnoxious when I drink, and I confuse this with thinking that I am impervious to alcohol. Turns out I'm as pervious as the next arrogant prick.

And so I had a Very Bad Day on Monday.

Sunday, of course, was awful. I spent it paying for Saturday's sin with pieces of my soul. In vomit, and hot salty tears. Andrew looked after me, got me to drink glass after glass of water and patiently reassured me that I'd be okay. And by Sunday night I was, more or less. We watched Run, Fat Boy, Run and I laughed a little bit. I ate a bowl of rice pudding. We went to bed and he read to me. He said that my hangover put his in perspective.

It certainly put me in perspective. Gone was the tequila gleam from my eyes, replaced by a soggy, saggy blear. I thought a good night’s sleep would fix me, but when Monday morning rolled around I rolled over and covered my face in horror. Dread was standing at the foot of the bed, nudging Despair with his elbow and daring him to pull back my covers. They followed me into the shower, knocked the soap from my hands and watched me scrabble for it on the floor. They sat in the back seat of the car as I drove to work, pulling faces each time I checked the rearview mirror. They crawled in under my desk at work and took it in turns to pinch my feet and sour the milk in my tea.

Shame showed up to join them after lunch. I was feeling moderately better, or at least reassured to have made it through the morning, when he said his quiet hello. I hung my head, my customary greeting, and started on my act of contrition. "Do you still love me? Do you still want me?" I whispered, and the whole world sighed and said “I do”. I don’t think it was meant, but I took heart to hear it said so and then got the fuck on with my day.

Dread and Despair insisted on a lift home. They wanted to listen to Matt Cooper, but I stuck on Sedaris’ The Santaland Diaries instead. My rictus grin held til I got home. Andrew looked after me, got me to drink glass after glass of water and patiently reassured me that I'd be okay. He’d had Gloom snapping at his heels all day. We walked down the banks of the black-dark canal to Ranelagh for some pasta, and on the way home I tried to explain to him how I was feeling. Not violently suicidal, I said, but like I’d like to lie down, and for everything to stop. It’s very frightening, and I don’t have the energy to be frightened of it. He understood, and was frightened for me. We talked some more, and when we got back home he held me softly and stroked my skin til I slept.

I woke on Tuesday morning to the smell of clean sheets and a better day. Surf Small and Mighty smells of optimism.


comingtoamericablog said...

Urgh I feel your pain. That Monday after a heavy weekend is hell. And why does everyone STARE at you? The Fear is a real thing

Annie said...

'He said that my hangover put his in perspective' tee hee!Aw. You are nice to each other.

Well described. Let me tell you, they only get worse as you get older. It is a harsh and cruel thing.

Radge said...

I've a long held belief that the 'second day hangover' is the worst, most soul deadening thing on this Earth.

The day after might bring the sickness and the heaving and the tears, but the day after that again comes the despair. I don't envy you that Monday, hopefully the fugue is a distant thing by now.

Katherine said...

Eek that's a bad hangover. It's terrible when something affects you, body and mind and all (in anyways).

Rosie said...

i'm mended, and i've learnt a lesson.

it mainly involves not drinking tequila ever again. feel free to remind me of it should i be in liquid company with any of you and feeling at all forgetful.

Kitty Cat said...

Lately I've found that I'm susceptible to some manner of reverse day hangover. I feel suprisingly fine the next morning but as the day wears on, it catches up on me until I'm in a ball on the couch wishing I had a straw so I didn't have to lift my head to take a drink of water.

Glad you're feeling better. Will we ever learn.

emordino said...

A+, would read again.

Rosie said...

i know you meant the "will we ever learn" rhetorically, Kitty Cat, but i am determined that i have indeed learnt my lesson this time. oh yes. it was that bad.

you should start grading all the posts you read, Colm. for the greater good.

emordino said...

That comment was derivative and lacked heart. Scrapes a C.

Karen said...

I don't drink at all now due to a medical condition, but I used to.

I last drank tequila on my 23rd birthday, nine years ago.

At 10.30pm on that night I was in the Mercentile on Dame Street drinking tequila.
The next thing I remember, it was 5am and I was in bed, thankfully my own, with a half eaten chicken kebab on my pillow. A very kind and honest taxi driver got me home to my mother, although I don't remember him at all. I'm only telling you what others told me. Anything at all could have happened to me. When I think back on it now, I actually shudder. It was the one time I ever drank that much.

I gave up the drink in 2006 and genuinely don't miss it one iota.

Excellent piece by the way!

Rosie said...

i'd miss it. i stayed on the dry for the weekend and feel like i should be given some kind of certificate, if not a medal.