Considering that the unofficial mascot of 2016 was a literal dumpster fire, New Year's Eve promises to be the most emotionally complicated in recent memory. Logically, we know little will change once the calendar changes over: Celebrities will keep on dying, Trump will still be on his way to Washington and we will all still live with the possibility of a nuclear strike being launched over a Twitter war. Yet even though it looks like we could be going from dumpster fire to radioactive landfill explosion, I doubt there is a single one of us who is not ready for 2016 to GTFO already.
Here’s where it has the possibility of getting dicey: At this year's New Year's Eve parties, we’ll all be fully aware we’re about to jump out of the frying pan and into the fire — George Michael, Prince, Bowie et al were just escaping before things really went to shit. And what happens when you’re depressed, scared and near an open bar? Nothing good. Here are a few reasons you should think about putting down those vodka tonics this weekend.
1. Give yourself a real fresh start
New Year's Day is supposed to symbolize rebirth, to give us all a fresh start where we’re going to start exercising and eating better (ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha!!!!), and finally, to speak proverbially, “get our shit together.” But get wasted the night before, you start the year with your head in the toilet, praying for the sweet embrace of death to take you. You’re not even 12 hours into 2017, and you’ve already failed spectacularly.
2. Walk in your fancy shoes with dignity
Ten bucks says that on New Year's Eve, you’re wearing heels. I’m of the stock that can barely suffer heels on a normal day and need to concentrate on not falling down while sober (this is with a 2-inch heel). God bless you ladies who are braving the night in stilettos and then adding alcohol to the equation like some death-defying circus performer. Bonus points if you’re doing this in the ice or snow and make it through the night successfully. Triple bonus points if you are also wearing a super-short dress because I can’t even walk to the mailbox in a miniskirt without showing far more vagina than is necessary for a mailbox visit.
3. No one likes getting sick
New Year's Eve parties tend to be a last hurrah of sorts, where you absolutely must eat the best life has to offer — or if that’s a bit out of your budget, at least eat as if there’s no tomorrow. Problem is, there is a tomorrow, and hangovers mean that, one way or another, you’re going to be tasting what you ate the night before all day long. We’re talking caviar, raw oysters, shrimp cocktail, pigs in a blanket. I wait all year for such edible bacchanalia and don’t want to have its glories being threatened it any way — a world where I forever shun oysters because of an unfortunate episode involving a magnum of Champagne and an overheated subway car. And speaking of Champagne…
4. You're getting to old for this
The stuff you’re drinking on New Year's Eve is loaded with sugar, meaning the next morning will be less “hangover” and more “my organs are starting liquefy and are painfully forcing their way out of every pore in my body.” And (not that I have to tell many of you this) the older you get, not only do the hangovers get worse, but the recovery time can last for days. So if 2016 happened to be the year you crossed the threshold of 30, good luck this weekend.
5. Face New Year's brunch with all your faculties working
The commercialism and fetishization surrounding the holidays have given us all Martha Stewart dreams and HGTV aspirations, meaning that one of your well-meaning friends has planned a “festive” New Year's Day brunch, and you, like an idiot, have already committed. You’re going to have to wake up early. You’re going to have to drive, outside, in the sunlight. And worst of all, you’re going to have to stumble in with a stomach wrenching like an accordion and eat eggs. I know these are supposed to be the best thing to eat with a hangover, but on the list of things to eat when I’m nauseous, eggs are right below poached salmon and right above calves’ liver.
6. You're not as funny drunk as you think you are
I’ve been living a sober life for several years now, and if it’s taught me anything, it’s that drunk people are painfully annoying and not nearly as entertaining as they think they are. I have countless cringeworthy moments in my past, plenty of things I said that I shouldn’t have, an uncomfortable amount of mistakes I’ve made — all because I was trying to “have a good time.” All you usually accomplish after one or two (or 12) glasses too many is the literal opposite of that notion. You don’t need to be wasting the first few weeks of the new year doing damage control on your personal life when you should be focusing your energy on crafting believable excuses as to why you’re not going to the gym.
The negatives almost always outweigh the positives during a night of drinking, and it’s going to be really easy to overdo it when you’re reaching for a cocktail weenie and it hits you once again that Alan Rickman is dead. Drink lots of water. Make sure you eat constantly through the night. Skip alcohol altogether, or switch to non-alcoholic drinks at some point through the night. Let’s let this dumpster fire burn out on its own and not pour a bottle of vodka on top of it.
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