Part of my drinking was so much about trying not to feel things, to not feel how I actually felt, and the terrible thing about being so hidden is if people tell you they love you… it kinda doesn’t sink in. You always think, if you’re hiding things, How could you know who I am? You don’t know who I am, so how could you love me? Saying who I am, and trying to be as candid as possible as part of practicing the principles, has permitted me to actually connect with people for the first time in my life.

So Jerry Seinfeld Called Us To Talk About Coffee : The Salt : NPR

I got married and I had a family and my entire day was not free for social interaction. And eating is annoying and difficult to arrange, [and it’s] hard to choose places. And meeting someone for coffee suddenly seemed like a wonderful, compact, accessible and portable social interaction. You don’t even really need a place. But you feel like you’re doing something. That is what coffee is. And that is one of the geniuses of the new coffee culture.

Shortly before reading this, I invited a friend to meet for coffee and not talking:

ELAINE: Come on, let’s go do something. I don’t want to just sit around here.

JERRY: Okay.

ELAINE: Want to go get something to eat?

JERRY: Where do you want to go?

ELAINE: I don’t care, I’m not hungry.

JERRY: We could go to one of those cappuccino places. They let you just sit there.

ELAINE: What are we gonna do there? Talk?

JERRY: We can talk.

ELAINE: I’ll go if I don’t have to talk.

So Jerry Seinfeld Called Us To Talk About Coffee : The Salt : NPR

Waiting for Pappy: one man’s search of Nashville for America’s hottest bourbon | Nashville City Paper

This is partly our fault. We, the bourbon drinking collective, have been doing it for years now — haughtily referencing some tiny boutique bourbon we’ve recently tried. They snobbed up the beer and we said nothing. They snobbed up pub food and we said nothing. This was inevitable, and we ushered it in.

10 years ago: “Oh you like Jim Beam? You should try Maker’s Mark.”

Five years ago: “Maker’s, huh? Check out Bulleit next time.”

Two years ago: “Bulleit’s a solid starter bourbon, but next time try for a Jefferson’s Reserve. I had it at a tasting recently. You’ll hear about it soon.”

And so on. Before I knew the impact of my own pretentiousness, I’d contributed to the mania.

Waiting for Pappy: one man’s search of Nashville for America’s hottest bourbon | Nashville City Paper

Fermented spirits please our common people, because they banish care, and all consideration of future or present evils.

Wine descriptors tell us more about a bottle’s price than its flavor. – By Coco Krumme – Slate Magazine

“Graphite. Black currant. Incense. And camphor?” This is a great read. You’ve probably read something similar about wine bullshit before, but this is probably better. Interesting that more expensive wines are described with more specific words.

When it comes to invoking elegance, foreign and complex words have a natural advantage. Cigars and truffle conjure up prestige and luxury. Meanwhile, a little-known berry or spice conveys the worldly sophistication of the critic, which the drinker can share. For a price.

Wine descriptors tell us more about a bottle’s price than its flavor. – By Coco Krumme – Slate Magazine

The drunk’s club: A.A., the cult that cures – By Clancy W. Martin (Harper’s Magazine)

An alcoholic writes about AA and recovery. This is a fantastic essay. [$]

My own view-in-progress is that there is no such thing as alcoholism as a disease or an allergy or a condition, but that alcohol is a very effective and potentially addictive medication for a whole host of psychological and neurobiological problems. […]The problem with alcohol is not so much that it is an addictive medication; rather, it’s that, unlike other addictive medications–to which people will also grow or not grow addicted at varying speeds and in unpredictable ways–alcohol’s social function and accessibility obfuscate this reality. If you’re prone to overdoing it, the fact that you’re self-prescribing (and choosing your own dosage) doesn’t help.

And:

Like most alcoholics I prefer to be the center of attention. That’s one of the reasons drinking was fun. You’re the hero of every story.

And also:

When you keep hearing “Relapse is part of recovery, relapse is part of recovery” each night from a different person, sometimes two or three, and then you leave the meeting and see the neon beer signs of the bar on the other side of Main, well, those lights get a little sparklier. Elbows on the bar, squeezed in, the bartender smiles; that smell of the bar, the smell of self-acceptance, joy, and fellowship.

Help is out there, folks.

The drunk’s club: A.A., the cult that cures – By Clancy W. Martin (Harper’s Magazine)

American Drink: Purist Intentions

Not everyone agrees with my No Rules Rule. Siiiiiiigh. Naturally. After all, this is America, where the only art more popular than the art itself is the art of being a dick about the art. Same as baseball, jazz, porn, and every other invented-for-fun pastime, drinking is rife with fundamentalist nutjobs (see “purists”) who have one way of doing things–by the book. And not that book either. This book, with the leather binding and 6pt Century Gothic. The old one.

American Drink: Purist Intentions

thebronzemedal:

Helen DeWitt, Chart 2008

The things that drive us crazy don’t do so once a month, or once a week, or even once a day: we have to fight them minute by minute, hour by hour.

In a fascinating piece over at Incongruous Quarterly, DeWitt recalls charting her year. The red blocks signify days she didn’t smoke, didn’t drink, or went to the gym. Very Lodwickian.