2.25 parts binging
Extract 4.75 days worth of drinking
Hypo: Limiting drinking to weekends only (6 PM Friday to 11:59 Sunday) will result in cloudfree workweeks, increased spending money, more sleeping, lower calories. Key to success is that there is a big reward for abstention.
Professional. Dragging out of bed and wasting days at work may be noticed and is starting to have effect on over all work quality.
Personal: too many hard weeks followed by harder weekends.
Rules: There is to be no consumption of alcohol of any kind from Monday through EOB Friday.
Concerns: Binging during prohibitive period may be far more than usual (though should be an overall reduction). May hamper social activity.
Practice: This one seemed to be very simple. Just don't drink for 4.75 days a week. Sleep better, work better, feel better. More time. Thinner. No hangovers at work! This is a very typical starting point for many people who want to be Not Drunk and at the same time realize they are Not Sober people either. The WO approach has the added benefit of being able to say to people "ha! I haven't had a drink in x days!" and/or "nah, I don't drink during the week."
Duration: Less than two weeks. Successful 5 straight days. Mostly failure other days.
Week 1 Results: Successful. Summary--Heavier-than-usual drinking around prohibitive period though complete abstention during week. +1 Bonus given for abstention Sunday to be used by end of month or lost. Still, must be careful about powerful binge during non-prohibitive period.
Sunday :[Hangover at 6.5]. Ordered burrito from downstairs, drank as much water as I could, took an Ambien and woke up cloudy but mostly unhungover at 7 Am Monday.
- Monday-Thursday: 0 consumption. Contemplating giving myself a bonus day for next week. Really, the rule is about NOT drinking on certain days rather than what days I can drink right? [*note: in retrospect, this is where failure began].
- Friday: End of the day could not come fast enough. Rather than go to gym, meet Mike and Micah after work. Fat Man comes minus Chica (who later shows up accompanied by Cousin It). Twofers get four pints of Guiness to go down smooth. Accidently expose Micah for sleeping with more guys than Mike know about. Much cover-up lying ensues. Start using word "cunt" too liberally as regards MLB Playoffs. Old men bristle. Friends not longer laughing. Apparently asked to leave. Skip dinner with everyone else and meet up with Big Red at The Stomp. Insult tall people. Drunk to level 8 Nearly pass out in cab. Hangover suprisingly low at 7.
- Saturday: Drink would help hangover, but must attend friend's child's bday party. Not too painful (though no booze available). Very few comfortable conversations with anyone. Realize now why there is always wine. Hold out until 5 PM. Wind up screaming about politics halfway through game and end night telling stories I shouldn't tell to people who don't care. Resolve not to see this group for another few months. Remember why I haven't seen them in as long. Drunk to 8. Hangover at 9.
Week 2 Results: Early quasi-success, late failure. Summary -- forced social interaction caused deviation and ultimate failure.
- Sunday: Terrible. Can do nothing but whine. Looking forward to a week of total sobriety.
- Thursday: In-house work happy hour. Forced social interaction. This is why there is booze. No one has anything to talk about but work. Everyone cautious. Drinking continues, desire for a quick one growing stronger. Everyone else is drinking and wants to feel like they aren't being naughty. Feigning illness does not work ["a little alcohol is good for a cold!"]. Peer pressure building. Whispering in corners. Those in AA or religiously opposed sip soda alone in corner. Nearly all are foreign, in technology and in no way friendly. No support for abstention. Boss pulls me aside and asks if I am having problems or need to talk. Assure him I am not and grab a beer. Get out ASAP but get 6-pack on way home [Drunk to level 5].
Theoretical reasons for result: The potential for binging is too much. This is too inflexible to allow for success. A complete moratorium enforced for 4.75 days with no flexibility or exceptions is good, because it does not allow for false exceptions (ballgame, birthday of a random acquaintance, State of the Union address) but too inflexible for valid exceptions.
Conclusions: Having a strict "hands off" policy seems incongruent with life of single urban professional. Social events during week include drinking. Professional networking uses drinking to foster interaction. Dating can not be contained to weekends. Blame put on society in general.