New Year’s Eve is about to be wack as hell if I don’t get out of this house.
That’s what I used to tell myself damn near every year once I hit the age where I was able to join the cool kids at bars, lounges and parties for New Year’s Eve festivities. The thought of staying at home with my mom and dad, playing Dominoes and drinking sparkling cider while maybe listening to some music, sounded like the worst idea ever, probably because I spent most of my under-18 years doing so. So I decided in my mind that I wanted to have the New Year’s Eve I saw in the movies: out all night, dancing with my best friends, having an absolute blast, making random memories.
So a few years ago, I planned such an outing. Me and two of my best friends bought tickets to a party at a popular nightclub. We booked a hotel in downtown Chicago (a swanky one, because my BFF’s dad was a consistent visitor and had perks), bought some fly new clothes, grabbed a bunch of alcohol and got ready for the New Year’s Eve to end all New Year’s Eves.
I wasn’t really a big drinker like that, but with it being New Year’s Eve, that night I decided to indulge. My friends, who attended the same college, were supposed to be expert pre-gamers, so as we got dressed for what was going to be one of the “best night’s ever,” we knocked back a few. A few too many that is. The hotel had given us a complimentary glass of champagne because of the holiday, and if that wasn’t enough, we had the gang of bottles we brought to the hotel. Being a rookie at the whole drinking to actually get tipsy thing, I didn’t realize that mixing different liquors in one night probably wasn’t the best idea. We went from glasses of Seagram’s Gin and Juice Blue Beast to rum and Coke, to fruit juice and Vodka and back again. Before I knew it, we were slipping around the hotel room dancing like fools before we even left the hotel. Once we finally made it outside, the night went from the best night ever to one of the worst–in no time flat.
I would say that we left the hotel around 10:30. When we got outside, just waiting for a cab, my friend slipped and fell, and when a doorman tried to help her out, she started acting somewhat erratic. I didn’t realize until then that she was actually very wasted, to the point that it was going to be an issue for the rest of the night. Yes, it was the beginning of a LONG but short night. After my other friend struck up an inappropriate conversation with the taxi driver (which I apologized to him for), we finally made it to the club, but the minute we got in and started dancing just a little bit, my wasted friend had to go to the bathroom. Unfortunately, we wound up in the bathroom a majority of the night, where she threw up the toxic mix of alcohol we consumed earlier in the evening. As we tried to make it back to the dance floor, holding on to the wall and my sick friend on the way, said homegirl was practically begging us to let her take a cab back to the hotel, and while we were mad, seeing that we spent good money to only be in the club for a hot second, knowing that she couldn’t hold anything down, we couldn’t keep her outside any longer. She became the sloppy drunk, my other friend was the angry drunk, and I was the apologetic one, saying sorry to anybody who came into contact with us and our behavior.
By the time we got to the coat check and my angry drunk friend yelled for her change, someone grabbed a cab for us. But before we could get outside, my sick friend threw up on the coat check table, and on my jacket. When we finally made it back to the hotel, she fell out of the cab and we were doing our best to get her back into our room without any of the classy, upscale folks noticing she was a hot mess (and so was the angry drunk and I, we just held it together better). When we finally got upstairs and took care of her, I cried in my drunkenness about our wasted evening. Before I knew it, we all fell asleep by 11:45 p.m. and missed bringing in the new year. Worst. New Year’s Eve. Ever.
After that dud of a celebration year, I tried my best to make the most of year’s after. But before I knew it, I was just tired of the whole thing and the pressure to plan something “fabulous.” I was spending good money to stand around people I didn’t know and who were just as drunk as I was years ago just to say I was doing something, when in all honesty, I would have been just as fine, if not better, back home with my mom and dad playing Dominoes, eating black eyed peas and drinking cider again…
While going on lavish trips for New Year’s and checking out funky lounges is fun, I learned that unless that’s what you really want to do for NYE, don’t go out of your way trying to do something for the sake of saying you did something that you think others might envy. Save that money and get some drinks, have a nice dinner, chill with friends or family in the crib if you want, and know that there’s just as much fun in doing that as there is dancing to the “Birthday Song” in a nightclub. Sometimes keeping it simple is the best thing you can do for yourself and your wallet, and can make for some of the most memorable outings a gal can have.