Monday, 28 September 2015
Out my cups
"I wouldn't mind meeting the sober version of you!"
So the wife tells me, as I voice my concerns about the long, boozeless month stretching out before me...
Naturally, I respond with a sneer. (Admittedly, it's not a very good sneer. It's one I've copied off Simon MacCorkindale during the denouement of the 1978-version of Death on the Nile. Though I've omitted the hollow laughter, the slow hand-clap and the impressive RADA buttock-clenching...you have to earn those things.)
I signed up to 'Go Sober For October' in the midst of a terrible hangover – in an effort to please my wife and new-born son.
(When I mention this now, typically the responses are:
The wife: "I've just done several months without a drink!"
The boy: nothing. Just stares up at me with large, impassive – incredibly clear – blue eyes, before turning his attention back to his rusk.)
I'm on my own here. And that's probably very right and proper.
As a 38-year-old, it means that – like many of my contemporaries – I haven't had a sober weekend for about 22 years. (There were a lot of boozy weekdays too. But no one's counting them.)
If this was a '50s American film, I'd be looking back at all these lost weekends through a dizzying kaleidoscope of neon bar signs reading 'The Pussy Cat' and 'The Pink Slipper'...
But, unfortunately, I'm British. And the sight of a thousand, faded pub signs makes for a less impressive montage.
One Unbound author – himself something of a bar-room habitué – recently summed up my fears about the coming month with great economy.
The message that sits under his donation reads simply: "You're an idiot."
Whilst an ex-colleague was moved to append the following explanatory note to his donation: "As it is for a good cause, and it will inconvenience you greatly, I feel this is project I can get behind."
Evidently, giving money to charity brings out the best in people...
Anyway, if you'd like to donate some cash to an excellent cause – and show a drunk a bad time into the bargain – please do.
It's all here for you: