Today’s quote is from F.Scott Fitzgerald, who needs no introduction:
‘First you take a drink, then the drink takes a drink, then the drink takes you.’
As a very young child of about five or six, I hated the effect that alcohol had on my parents. They were not alcoholics by any stretch of the imagination, but Dad always liked a drink every Sunday lunchtime, and would often return from the pub worse for wear and on a shorter fuse than normal. Mum would be complaining that his dinner was all dried up, and I’d try and stay out of the way until everything had calmed down. When they went out with friends or to a party I’d worry about what state they’d come home in, as sometimes they were sick and the next day would be hungover.
Even at that tender age I knew it was alcohol that was turning them into something I didn’t want them to be. My parents unwittingly turned me off imbibing too much alcohol for life. About the age of 7 I decided that I would never, ever, get drunk. So far I never have, nor ever will be, as I prefer to be in control of my faculties. I just cannot see the attraction in it. Disbelievers over the years have said to me “I’m going to get you drunk tonight.” I tell them “Good luck with that then.”
In my late teens and early twenties I was always the responsible one, a ‘des’ (designated driver) for all my girlfriends, happy to have just one alcoholic drink and spend the rest of the evening drinking fruit juice. Even now I am the same. I like whisky and ginger, Pimms or cider, but am happy with just the one. To be perfectly honest, I prefer water. People look at me aghast in pubs or clubs if I say I want a glass of water. Sometimes I like asking for water just to wind them up, even if I fancy a whisky and ginger!
I am lucky that I was not born with an addictive nature. I have seen over and over the misery caused to families living with somebody who is an alcoholic. So I would say that it depends on your personality as to whether the drink takes you or not. It won’t take me, because I won’t let it.