All Articles Tagged "drinking"

I Was Ganged Up On At A Party For Not Drinking Alcohol

April 1st, 2016 - By Nneka Samuel
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Thanks to the wonderful invention of camera phones and the popularity of hidden-camera television shows, I sometimes assume that I’m being filmed without my knowledge or consent.  This paranoia typically occurs when I’m in a situation that I can’t quite fathom logically.  Like, this is too weird/funny/fill-in-the-blank not to be recorded.  I’d like to blame this on our film everything, cell phone attached to the hip at all times culture, but I’m sure the highly imaginative writer in me has something to do with this thinking as well.

Case in point, I attended a house party recently.  It was a birthday celebration.  Pretty small, pretty chill.  I went solo; only about 20 or so folks were in attendance.  There was great food, good music and plenty of alcohol.  But I’m not much of a drinker, so I politely declined any alcoholic beverages when they were offered to me.  Besides not caring much for the taste, I have a very low tolerance for alcohol.  A few sips and my stomach is in knots.  It’s not the best feeling in the world, so I figure why even go there?  Save them precious drops for someone who actually wants them.

But I couldn’t have guessed that my lack of drinking would stir up such heated emotions in the other partygoers.  Everyone there was drinking, getting tipsy and having a good time.  Myself included, minus the alcohol.  But strangely, one person after another commented on the cup of water in my hand.  Some straight up found the H20 offensive.  And a few couldn’t believe that I was getting by at this party completely sober.  Others still equated my lack of alcohol consumption as a clear and obvious indication that I wasn’t having fun.  How dare I refuse to have a good time at a party…

That’s when the writer in me kicked in.  Was I being punked?  Suddenly, I felt like I was unknowingly shooting a PSA with a bunch of paid actors who could pass for teenagers in the same way that 20-something actors did in the ‘90s on shows like Saved By The Bell and My So-Called Life.  And clearly this PSA, in which I was the unsuspecting star, was meant to showcase the ills of peer pressure in a “This is your brain on drugs” kind of way.  At any second, the party was going to turn from awkward and uncomfortable to “Why didn’t I get out of there sooner?”  But the more I looked around, the more I realized that there were no cameras, hidden or otherwise.

In that moment, I felt like an ancient relic.  More like the unfortunate subject of a freak show.  I never in my life received so much attention for the contents of my red plastic cup.  These perfect strangers ganged up on me for not having fun in a way that matched their standards. Sure, I can blame their obnoxious behavior on the liquor, but the bigger picture to me, the most important eye-opener is the fact that not only do I have a low tolerance for alcohol, the older I get, the less tolerance I have for BS – alcohol induced or not.

The old me would have internalized the taunting of a tipsy few and allowed that petty foolishness to feed my own insecurities.  I would have stayed at that house party out of obligation to prove a bunch of strangers wrong.  And for what?  Eff that.  I wasn’t having the time of my life but I was certainly enjoying the food, the music, and the company. But the fun sure did stop once people kept accusing me of being a party pooper because I didn’t join them in a drink or two.  I didn’t take their words to heart, but the incessant and unnecessary attention put a serious damper on what was formerly a chill, relaxed mood.  So instead of hanging around and being privy to more bs, I stood up for myself and reminded anyone who asked that it’s perfectly possible to attend a party, not drink at said party and live to tell the tale.  And then I said goodbye to the host and took my sober butt home.

Now, at the end of the day, was the party that serious or that big of a deal?  Not at all.  It was simply an odd experience that I couldn’t resist sharing.  An experience that unexpectedly showed me how much I’ve grown.

Have you had a similar experience?

5 Tips For Traveling With Co-Workers Who Work Hard And Play Even Harder

March 1st, 2016 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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Corbis

Corbis

If you work in a close-knit environment, traveling with co-workers can seem like fun and a new way to form deeper bonds with colleagues. However, sometimes work trips can expose the worst, not only in a co-worker, but in yourself, especially when alcohol is involved. Here are five tips to survive a work mentality of work hard play hard when your co-workers are as lush as they come.

Avoid Camera Footage

Many of us love to take (or be in) photos or videos to document and remember our trips, regardless if they are more professional than personal in nature. However, sometimes pictures and videos can be misread and downright inappropriate, especially when posted to social media. If the latter is going down and you don’t want to end up on World Star Hip Hop, make sure to avoid cameras at all cost.

Don’t Drink With Them

Remember the old adage: Birds of a feather flock together. Well, in this case, you don’t want to heavily associate with the coworker who is always drunk during the trip because when others relay what the drunk coworker did or did not do, you will also be involved in the story and higher-ups might not take so kindly to that.

Don’t Overshare Your Personal Business

When some people get tipsy, they become very talkative and might spill your health, relationship or even financial business to other colleagues. You should, of course, be cordial with your co-workers, but don’t share why you had sex with your boyfriend on your first date or why you don’t have a savings account.

Don’t Engage In Sexual Activity

Traveling often encourages people to relax and drop their guard; combine that with alcohol and its not long before it seems like people are trying to relive their golden years of college. If you happen to be attracted to the coworker who will frequently blame many things on the alcohol, it’s best for you to keep your distance. Aside from the potential health risks, the lush co-worker may be the type to kiss and tell and no one wants to be on the front page of the office gossip newsletter. Plus, things could get really awkward when you have to return to your regular work environment.

Always Remain Professional

Remember why you are on the work trip: to work. Network with other colleagues in your field and explore the city you traveled to, if you can, but uphold professional boundaries between you and the rest of your team, just as you would in the office. The trip is temporary; your professional reputation is forever.

“I Never Got To Taste Cristal”: Did You Know These Celebrities Had To Quit Drinking?

April 13th, 2015 - By Meg Butler
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Image Source: Shutterstock

Image Source: Shutterstock

Who started drinking in middle school? And who staged their own intervention?

These celebs used to live by the mantra, “turn down for what?” But today, they’re living an alcohol-free lifestyle. The stars who quit drinking are living a much more sober life — and loving it!

Tried And Tested Hangover Cures To Get You Through Tomorrow

December 31st, 2014 - By Meg Butler
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Image Source: Shutterstock

Image Source: Shutterstock


Sometimes having a happy New Year comes with not-so-happy consequences. There are no instant hangover cures, but stick to these tricks and you can battle most of your symptoms until you’re body’s feeling better.

Do You Know Which Of These Drinking Myths Are True?

December 31st, 2014 - By Meg Butler
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Image Source: Shutterstock


Before you head out for your New Year’s libations, be sure you know the truth behind these common drinking myths.

Ladies, It’s Time To Elevate Your Palate With An Eau De Vie

July 21st, 2014 - By Madame Noire
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Source: Shutterstock

Source: Shutterstock

It’s summer time, and that means brunching and rooftop cocktails are in full effect Friday-Sunday (at least). While we’re sure you’ve already sipped on your fair share of warm weather staples like Sangria and the ever-quoted Moscato, it’s time to introduce your taste buds to something more sophisticated and new, a la an Eau De Vie. Not sure what that is exactly? Allow us to explain.

An Eau De Vie is an ultra-premium traditional French spirit made with only one exceptional ingredient: 100% French grapes. Unlike Vodka, which by definition must be odorless and flavorless to be classified as such, Eau De Vies retain their natural grape flavor making it appetizingly smooth chilled over ice, or as the perfect base for a mixer of your choice to create a uniquely flavorful cocktail. If just telling you how this unique cosmopolitan spirit will upgrade any drinking experience isn’t enough to convince you, let us show you the difference an Eau De Vie like Rémy Martin V can make during a day or night out on the town.

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Let Me Buy You A Drink… Liquor Black People Love

December 13th, 2013 - By Meg Butler
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Last week we told y’all about Slate’s detailed explanation of why black folks love cognac, but the truth is that’s not the only liquor we fancy. It’s never a surprise to us when someone of color orders one of beverages.

Liquor Black People Love

Moscato

Black folks love Moscato so much NPR did a report on it. It’s sweet, easy to find,  and it’s enjoyed a shout out from rappers from Lil’ Kim to Drake. Even NeNe Leakes started her own brand called Miss Moscato.

My First Thanksgiving With The In-Laws Turned Into A Drunken Fest

November 28th, 2013 - By Ezinne Ukoha
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Shutterstock

My younger brother got married last year and even though I wasn’t exactly thrilled to have new family members, I always played my part as his big sister and tried to remain politely diplomatic from a distance. It wasn’t that they were bad people; it was more of a personality thing. Not to sound like a snob, but they were a little rough around the edges and even though I don’t consider myself high-maintenance, I definitely make the effort to stay fashionably current. Maybe it’s because I reside in the fashion capital of the world – you kind of have to step up your game in order to get the right kind of attention.

My brother’s in-laws hail from Atlantic City but he and his wife remained in Maryland and they bought an amazing house, which they absolutely adore. So of course they couldn’t wait to play host for the holidays and they invited the whole family on both sides to indulge them. I had planned on spending the holidays with my boyfriend’s family but I suddenly found myself single and even though I tried to get out of it, I ended up on the Bolt Bus headed for Greenbelt, MD. It was actually Thanksgiving Day, and I arrived later that evening, exhausted, starving and moody. All I wanted to do was dive into bed. I didn’t have the energy to pretend that I was happy to see everyone or pretend that I enjoyed the food. My sister-in-law’s mother is a notoriously bad cook who relies on canned goods and artificial flavoring and I knew that I would not end the day with a good home cooked meal.

As soon as the door flew open, I was readily embraced and everyone seemed to be a having a jolly good time. There was food everywhere; music blasting and there was liqueur. Lots and lots of liqueur, I had no choice but to jump right in and things got even more chaotic. This was my first bonding session with people that I didn’t know very well and I felt that I needed to try to stay sober and behave myself so they at least have a good impression of who I really am. But that plan went out the window once I downed my third vodka and cranberry. I wasn’t sure if this was an indication of the way the in-laws get down for the holidays but I knew why I was drinking so much. I needed an escape from what I thought was going to be a disastrous affair but even in my drunken haze, I could tell that the feelings being expressed were genuine. I felt guilty for being so judgmental in the beginning and not giving them a chance to show me their true colors.

We spent the next day nursing our much-deserved hangovers and I was able to really connect with everybody as we sat around and shared stories and experiences. I found out that both my sister-in-law’s mother and grandmother were breast cancer survivors and they actually instigated my first mammogram exam this past summer. After a nice long weekend, I hopped on the bus back to New York, and as I looked out the window, I felt grateful. I was thankful for the fact that my brother had married the love of his life and inherited a new family. I was also thankful that I was able to share the wealth and I couldn’t wait for another opportunity to get to see them all again.

Drink Like A Fish? How To Date Someone Who Doesn’t Share Your Vice

July 16th, 2013 - By Julia Austin
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Shutterstock

Every couple will have their differences—big and small—and while, for the most part, we appreciate one another’s differences, and even try each other’s habits/viewpoints on for size, there is one difference that you just can’t mess with: vices that you don’t share. For the sake of this article, we’ll use alcohol as an example. But the rules apply to almost any vice from smoking to online shopping.

Duh! Study Finds White Girls Are More Likely To Abuse Alcohol Than Black Girls

June 14th, 2013 - By Veronica Wells
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istock

istock

A new study from Yale University found that African American college aged “girls” (read: women) are less likely to develop drinking problems than white girls because of cultural and environmental factors.

The study cited parental disapproval, a more conservative attitude toward drinking and higher church attendance as reasons why there is such a stark difference between the two racial groups. The New Haven Register summarized the findings like this:

The study, published Thursday in the journal Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, focused on 3,500 female twins, both identical and fraternal, “to look at the relative contributions of genetics vs. environment on (the) age of first drink and problem drinking,” Sartor said. 

What we found is that there’s no shared environmental effects” in African-American teens who abuse alcohol, Sartor said. “Family environment is not playing a role in problem drinking.” For black girls who drink heavily, genetics and individual experiences, such as different friends or traumatic events, are more relevant, she said 

At a community and cultural level, European-Americans are not doing as good a job at protecting their girls from problem drinking as African-Americans are.” 

Interestingly enough, this is not something we needed a study to tell us. As someone who attended a predominately white university, when girls were being carried home, throwing up in elevators or falling out in the street they were white. Not that black girls didn’t get wasted but the numbers didn’t lie.

While the study cited church and less importance placed on drinking etc, after some discussion about the issue in our office we also concluded that black people are less carefree when we go out partying. Many of us are keenly aware of the fact that if we get too intoxicated to take care of ourselves and end up causing some type of disturbance, we’re less likely to get the benefit of the doubt. We just might be interacting with the police. And if have to interact with the police that just might mean we’ll endure abuse, mistreatment or in some cases even death. If we get too drunk and end up lost or missing we know there won’t be national searches looking to ensure that we’re returned to our families safely.

It’s a sad tale; but for many of us, we don’t even leave the house on the same level of abandon or “carefreeness” that white women do. In addition to the safety issues, we know that if we’re in a mixed crowd many of us are also worried about how we’ll be perceived if people who aren’t black see us out here acting a fool.

But that’s just our theory. What are some of the reasons you think African American college-aged women drink less than white women?