Sunday, January 25, 2015

Hey. Let’s drink.

The new age mantra to partying

So we recently had one of my best friends visit us. As are all his trips, there was some extensive sight-seeing and since he is hot, single and willing to mingle (take a bow Siddharth Shetty) there was also some intensive partying.

Been there, done that. Nothing new. Yet on most nights out, my husband and I, couldn’t help but notice how integral drinking has become to partying. Now don’t get me wrong… this post is not about being judgmental on the subject. Cheers to those who (responsibly) do however for those who choose not to, what are the options? While the menu offers ‘Sex on the Beach’ and ‘Bloody Mary’ with ‘Tom Collins’ and a ‘Cosmopolitan’ to the spirited ones, what are our choices? A strong Diet Coke on the rocks? Or a tall glass of Canned OJ?
On one such fine dining night, wanting something equally exotic sounding, we asked for the menu and went through their mocktail section. Voila! They actually had a Strawberry Sunrise Margarita and a Lemon n lime Mojito. Impressed, I excitedly ordered the Strawberry Sunrise. Only to be served a regular margarita to my utter disappointment. Upon complaining that I had clearly ordered a mocktail, the waiter was quick to retort with a cheeky smirk that not many who come here have a virgin margarita. Of course, what transpired as a result of his inspiring customer service is an entirely different post. All I can say here is, the guy will surely not be making any more margaritas for a while.

But that’s not the point. The point is drinking today has almost become a pre requisite to having fun. Whether you’re at a restaurant, a bar, a night club, if you don’t drink, you’re not having fun. Or fun enough. Our entire marketing structure too is built around glamorizing alcohol. From media to movies ( ), the new age mantra is not partying = fun. It’s more propaganda around drinking = partying which then = fun. (Here are some interesting US statistics ) As a result, not remembering what happened the previous night becomes a big LOL moment these days and ‘I got so totally wasted last nite’ is often perceived as a FB - I’m so cool - status update amongst youngsters today.
Driving the point home, can we collectively take a stand and UN-popularize this mind set which seems to have comfortably taken the front seat? Can we go clubbing and occasionally not drink just to ensure that we are able to have fun with or without. Can the food and service industry come up with an equally exhaustive and attractive mocktail menu perhaps with names like ‘Made in heaven’ or ‘Single Lady Iced Tea,’ just to spice things up. What do you think? Can the media idealize teetotalers with the same hype? Instead of saying; ‘What? You don’t drink? Come on; have a beer at least.’ can you, as an individual who sensibly drinks, empower another who doesn’t, by not drinking yourself that night?  Can we be relieved from the pressures of social drinking? Let’s face it, if you have to drink to be social, that’s not really social drinking.

My questions may be varied but the answers are pretty synonymous. The concept of a night out without alcohol needs to be reestablished, reinforced and repeated.
Thus on a mission and to reiterate, when at a party recently, I met an old friend; ‘Wassup babe?!’ I asked. ‘Hey, just flying high, she said. ‘Cheers! N you?’ I happily replied; ‘Keeping it real girl. Feelin’ grounded n lovin’ it! Cheers to that!’

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1 comment:

  1. Absolutely true Tasneem. This practice of insisting on drinks to enjoy partying has caught on in Indian cities as well. I am strongly against the pressure to conform in order to "enjoy" as I believe it should be a personal choice