Adam Schirling Dispatch #1

by Horror Sleaze Trash on March 29, 2012

The Lost Art of Manly Alcohol Consumption in Social Settings

by Adam J. Schirling, HST Correspondent-at-Large

“Alcohol is the anesthesia by which we endure the operation of life”.

-George Bernard Shaw

There was a wonderful and glorious time in history when we as men knew how to drink properly. When the true gentlemen could measure inebriation against proper etiquette, and emerge a gentleman still. That is not to say that there wasn’t fellows back then who hit the bottle with a vengeance, usually at the cost of fortune, marriage, and life itself. We are not discussing them. We are addressing the true man about town, the machismo filled chivalrous man who could tie one on with the best of them, and still retain the respect of family and friends.

It is hard to say when exactly the change occurred. I suppose about the time when a martini lunch went out of style, so definitely late in the twentieth century. Men simply forgot how to drink like men. The influx of bad beer and spirits, and the stigma of drinking as a social ailment wreaked havoc on the drinking class. This short guideline should help the average man embrace the art of alcohol consumption in a variety of social situations.

Now, we know college was fun. All those beer bongs, shots of Yukon Jack, jello shots with the cute girl from your English 101 class…….Great times. But these years simply built a foundation for you to build on as you mature, but sadly many cease their pursuit of alcohol knowledge and etiquette at this young age. They forever remain in the purgatory of the grown up teenage drinker. Let us review some of the very basics, and help reclaim a lost part of our genetic makeup.

The First Date:  Ahhh, the nerve wrecking endeavor that all true men must face at least once in our lives. This all important moment will let the woman in question get a fast impression of you, and conclude if you are worthy of her courtship. We as a society enjoy the semi-formal dinner as a first date staple, so what a perfect opportunity to display your gentlemanly knowledge of wine and spirits. With the appetizer, order yourself a nice evening cocktail, something light to ease the social anxiety you are facing. A scotch and soda, or perhaps a Manhattan is very appropriate. Allow your date to peruse the cocktail menu herself, do not be the pushy chap who orders for you both right away. Hopefully she will order an appropriate beverage as well, a vodka martini for instance, confirming that you have made a good choice in arranging this date with the vixen. IF SHE ORDERS A SHOT OF JAGER, EXIT THE RESTRAUNT IMMEDIATELY! That dame is trifling. No good will come from this. Go over the wine menu together to order a bottle to accompany the entrée. Remember some basic principles such as whites and light reds like Pinot for chicken and fish, heavier reds for beef or veal. When the waiter presents the bottle, just glance quickly at the label to confirm it is the correct one you ordered. If he hands you the cork, do not start sniffing it. This is not a formal wine tasting, sir! Take the cork and just give it a once over to ensure it is not molded and crumbly, meaning the wine has been ruined in storage. When the waiter pours your taste, do not be the douchebag who make a grandiose scene of deeply smelling and slurping the vino. It does not make you look refined, rather like a stuck up ass. Take a sip, and nod to the waiter to pour your glasses. For dessert, order a nice glass of port. Remember, the key to the first date is to appear educated and well mannered, not snobby and pretentious.

The dinner at your girl’s parent’s house:  Another perfect chance to show your gentlemanly qualities to the parents of the girl you are currently giving the business to. As with the first date, there is a fine line between refined man and arrogant asshole. Ask your lady if she knows what will be served at dinner, so you can make your proper choice at the wine store. If she is unsure, always go with a moderate priced Pinot Noir. This versatile varietal matches well with most every food. DO NOT BUY A MERLOT. This grape has had a bad stereotype assigned to it, and is recovering well with some very talented winemakers, but still why take the chance? Remember, you are going to be sitting down with the people who birthed and raised that girl you like to tie up with scarves and violate her every orifice.  Select a moderate ($15-$30) bottle. Any cheaper, you look like a destitute ass. More expensive; a snobby prick. Give it to her mother when you arrive, and be sure to remark just how well it matched with the delicious meal.

Cocktails after work with colleagues: A very dangerous world that far too many men tend to screw up. It is late in the office, you are a bit worn from the hectic day, and some of the boys are heading to the local pub for some drinks. Inevitably, a couple of the single-ish female co-workers eager to be ‘one of the guys’ will tag along as well. At the bar, order yourself a cocktail that shows your quality. I am a true firm believer that men must enjoy scotch, but sadly some never acquire the taste. And that is just fine, but just because you scoff at a Black Label on the rocks, does NOT give you the green light to start slinging back Captain Morgan and diet soda. That’s right, the cheap rum and coke is not ok, and you heard me correctly. We aren’t at the dorm party anymore, remember? Order top shelf liquor on the rocks, maybe with some soda water and lime if you cannot take the medicine straight. No diet soda. No cranberry juice. No blended margaritas unless it’s a Mexican joint. And for the love of god, no light beer. Yes we know you have been hitting the gym, and carbs suck, but that does not give you an excuse to start chugging diluted horse piss in public. You are with co-workers; you must remain an alpha male. And an alpha male does NOT drink light beer. Save it for game day with your bros. DO NOT get in a shot contest with that pretty girl with the huge cans who just started at the office. Never ends well, for anyone, so just stay the hell away from that lion’s den, lest you end up a cautionary tale of drunken rape accusations.

The informal party at a friend’s house: An American tradition. Don’t be the jackass who shows up with the 6 pack of Bud Select. That’s the alcohol equivalent to brining a jumbo bag of Hot Fries. Remember those from grade school? Yup, they were fucking tasty. But still not an excuse to be the guy with the miniscule amount of bad booze at the party. Go for at least a case of beer, and make sure it is a quality import or well-known domestic micro-brew. If you have it available in your area, Fat Tire from New Belgium Brewing is a perfect example. Again, here you don’t want to seem snobby either. No one will appreciate if you bring that case of super rare scotch barrel aged blueberry and wheat IPA. But you shouldn’t be buying fruit flavored beer anyway for fuck sake! If you friends plan on buying a keg, offer to give money for an appropriate percentage of the beer.

The concert with old friends:  Go to town, sir. Pregame it hard at your house with something strong, make sure to take a cab, and drink at the show till your blue in the face. This is the perfect example of a situation where it is ok to let go of some of your gentlemanly composure. You are among friends, who will not judge you or tell strangers if you make out with a fat girl with acne, or get a handjob from a fatter girl in the parking lot after the show. Just make sure it doesn’t end up on YouTube. My friends would do something exactly like that. I am pretty sure they already have. They have.

I hope that armed with this list, you can go out into the world of social drinking with your manhood and integrity intact, and your gentleman’s etiquette sincere. Too many men give is a bad name these days, the 30 year olds chugging Jager and Red Bull shots while they grab their female coworkers boobs. Do not be that guy. The art of drinking alcohol has been a pursuit fine-tuned and developed over thousands of years of human evolution. When you put that glass to your lips, you acknowledge your membership in the fraternity of gentlemen who pursue enlightenment and nirvana with the world around them buy imbibing in a very glorious and manly pastime: The drink.

Happy drinking to you, my friends.

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