Having it all together

You might be a semi real grown up if one of your classmates tells you “everyone thinks you’re very together” and you don’t spit out your angry balls** in her face from laughing so hard. On the one hand, I’m flattered because I tried (semi) hard my whole college career to make it seem like I was a together, competent, almost-professional. From insisting that I had car sickness on a Tuesday when I made my supervisor pull over so I could throw up at a gas station, to occasionally sleeping in my clothes so I could wake up and make it to class in five minutes, I always put on a good facade. But no one ever fell for it. Maybe it was because most of my classmates saw me out at the bar Tuesday-Sunday, or maybe it was because my housemates and I once won a $50 bar tab by winning Quizzo for which the topic was “dirty minds,” or maybe it was because I called the bar “home” as much as I called it by name. 

On the other hand, I’m horrified. Have I really reached the point where I can be wearing a Tiki mask and holding a drink which is the combination of hard cider and CINNAMON FLAVORED WHISKEY and someone still tells me I really give off the appearance of having it all together? Is it wrong that I miss when people would see me Sunday mornings and shake their head in a way that kind of said “thank god for you because you set the baseline for being a mess and I’m below it”?

Mostly though, I’m confused. I guess it’s because I’m with myself all day so I frequently catch myself in moments of not very togetherness. Like, not two minutes ago when I looked at myself in the mirror and thought, “you look kind of heavy” and then grabbed myself a beer from the fridge. Or when I had to skip dinner because I was too full from eating so many cookies (which I ate because I wanted them gone so as not to tempt me in the future). Or when the guy at the liquor store stopped ID-ing me and started greeting me by name.

It’s kind of comforting to know that “having it all together” is a matter of perception. Next time you see a person who really seems to have it figured out, keep in mind that she probably goes home and strips in her living room because wearing professional clothes makes her want to cry. (Or maybe thats just me?)

**angry balls= angry orchard cider and fireball. Sicko.


Running out of wine (and how it’s kind of a metaphor for my life)

A time will come shortly after you graduate college when you’re too old to drink like you used to but you’re also too young to accept that fact. It will be during this time that you will find yourself having a glass of wine with dinner every. Damn. Night. And it’s kind of sad because you’re drinking wine because you genuinely like the taste AND it’s from a bottle not a box AND you (almost) never get a wine hangover because you’re only having a glass. It’s weird. And then the wine runs out and you find a bottle of vodka in your freezer literally LEFT OVER FROM SENIOR WEEK and you make yourself and mixie and you wonder how you got to where you are. And that’s when you write a blog.

Once when I was in London, my friends and I wanted to have beer olympics. One thing led to another and we ended up playing with Strongbow (a cider brand that should be put in jail for trying to kill me via hangover multiple times). After drinking 20 liters of Strongbow between ten people, I looked around and I weirdly had a Gyro in my hand that I didn’t remember ordering/leaving the apartment to get. One of my friends was drunkenly constructing a trophy out of Strongbow bottles while muttering “this was my life for two years,” and another friend was screaming “IT WON’T BE FUNNY WHEN I’M DEAD TOMORROW.” I was confused how any of these events had happened independently let alone how they were connected in any way. It was surreal and I couldn’t make sense of it. My point is that THAT is kind of how I feel every morning I wake up and I remember I’m not in college. Except in this scenario I don’t go home and drunkenly email my boyfriend to tell him that he has “the emotional capacity of a caterpillar” because I’m a fucking grown up and vodka just doesn’t inspire me to write scathing emails in the same way Strongbow always did.

If you’ve read this far, you’re probably currently compiling a list of AA meetings in my areas to gently send my way with the subject line “something to think about.” Well, that’s rude because passive aggressive (mostly aggressive) emails are clearly MY thing and also if you’re thinking that way you’re obviously still in college and you don’t understand how I feel. Talk to me when you graduate and you run out of wine and the wine is kind of a metaphor for your life.

…….And now I need a drink.

Grown Up Thoughts

Transitioning from the comfort of my alma mater to a new, much glitzier school (our library was a former president’s summer home) has been harder than expected. For one, I’m confused as to why there is no sign of Jesus anywhere. Having gone to a Jesuit school for undergrad, I’m used the the constant, judgmental undertones of Catholicism. However, they have made up for the lack of religious paraphernalia by kind of naming a building after beyonce (Bey hall). So I kind of still feel the judgement and disappointment similar to what I’m sure Jesus feels when he sees me. (Doing the rosary 100 times for comparing Bey to Jesus. Thou shalt have no other gods blah blah blah).

The lack of Jesus has left me feeling pretty alone and wondering if anyone even hears me when I pray for the Mets to get good or for calorie-less bread. I’m having a very “are you there God? It’s me, Margaret” moment.

Along with thoughts of having been forsaken, I’ve been having a lot of other intrusive thoughts that I can only attribute to growing up and becoming an adult. I’ve decided to make a list of very grown up thoughts I’ve been having because I’m sure people can relate. I’ve put them in the order that they typically pop up during the day:

  1. Why does my bed smell like an everything bagel
  2. Where’s the sun
  3. Shut up birds seriously shut up
  4. Is mixing white wine and orange juice kind of like a mimosa? (answer: no)
  5. Do I have to dress up for class now that I’m in grad school?
  6. I’ll just add a lot of bracelets I feel like social workers do that
  7. Is three cups of coffee before 7am too many?
  8. It doesn’t count if it’s ice coffee.
  9. Since when do I have so much Biggie on my iphone?
  10. Fuck traffic. Fuck construction. Fuck everyone on the road but me.
  11. Why am I sweating already?
  12. Wait now my car smells like an everything bagel
  13. I should have brought a wine-mimosa with me to class
  14. Seriously, when did I go on a drunk itunes binge and buy all these Biggie songs?
  15. $3.31 is NOT a good price for gas
  17. Shit I almost hit that kid. I hate commuting. Parking is a nightmare. Everything sucks
  18. Look at those undergrads. What a life. Look how carefree they look. Their whole life is ahead of them.
  19. You shouldn’t have yelled “trade lives with me” out your window.

Clearly, I’m spiraling. I may have asked my dog what it’s like to live a life free of responsibility during an especially hard moment in this existential crisis I’m having. I’ve also had three people tell me I look “really familiar” so I’m convinced there is someone out there using my pictures to Catfish others, or I just have a really average looking face.

PLEASE GOD, if you’re there, let it be the former. I’d rather have my identity stolen than be average. Amen. 

How to be really good at senior year

Tomorrow marks the first day in four years that my college will be starting without me in attendance. If you’re wondering how I’m coping: I’m not. Yesterday, I told my mom I would rather be dead than not go back to school but I quickly took it back when I realized I was in fact NOT going back to school and yet here I was, alive.
Because I can’t be a college student for the rest of my life (not for lack of trying), I’ve compiled some tips for how to be really good at senior year:

Call the bouncer/owner at your favorite bar “mom.” Plan to only to it when speaking about her to others, but get drunk enough that you definitely, definitely call her mom to her face at least once a weekend. Get so drunk that you actually start treating her like your mom. Cry in her arms. Hug her a lot. Ask her to take selfies with you. Apologize when you are too drunk “in her home.” Thank her when she has one of her employees make sure you “get home safe.”
I have done all of the above and it definitely pays off on your birthday weekend when the bar is too crowded and she isn’t letting people in but then she sees your face and ushers you past everyone else. It also helps to point at your crown and tell her you’re going to “lose it if I’m not home for my birthday.”

Order champagne at the bar. Nothing says “smiling through tears” like drinking $12 champagne out of the bottle. You’ll also make a ton of friends, if you consider friends to be people who disappear once the bottle is empty, which I do.

Lose your fear of dancing. It helps to embrace one move and do it to every single song no matter what. When in doubt, just spin in circles.

Make a mends. Maybe a rude lax bro made fun of you once sophomore year and you hold a grudge. Maybe a rude lax bro spread rumors about you when you were a freshman, maybe a lax bro loved you on the weekends but then ignored you during the week. Wait, I’m seeing a pattern. Fuck lax bros. Don’t make a mends, ignore them completely (unless they have a bottle of champagne in their hands…then, make a mends.)

Wednesday is the new Thursday. Tuesday is the new Wednesday, and Sunday is the new saturday. Maybe take Monday off.

When your friend asks you to go out, say yes. Literally, always just do it. Even if your friend may be developing an alcohol dependency, go out with her and just hope the habit ends after graduation.

Crying at the bar is no longer a taboo and it will actually get you a ton of free drinks.

If you feel like shit about the way you look, just put on dark lipstick.

Pregame every outing. Even if you’re going to your bar for unlimited beer, definitely pregame. Show up with all your friends way drunker than everyone at the bar. Pregame so much that people are prompted to ask how early you started drinking.

Bring a flask out with you. Add vodka to your vodka. Add vodka to your beer if you wanna remember nothing and tweet weird things when you get home. Yell at your friend who thought it would be a good idea to put vodka in your beer, pray for death when you have a weird beer-ka hangover, bargain with God and tell him you’ll never drink again, curse everything and everyone, but then half seriously suggest you add vodka to your beer every weekend because OMG I think I had so much fun.

Stand near a garbage can at the bar so you can throw up without having to stop dancing.

Cry. Cry a lot. Hug people you have never even liked. Look around the bar and think “I’ll never see a lot of these people again in a few months.” Let that fact terrify you or let it comfort you. Don’t ever let the crying get in the way of the drinking.

During our senior week kickoff party, there was this dumbass sign with that Dr. Suess quote…”Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.” Quite frankly, at the time, it infuriated me. How am I suppose to not cry? Seriously? But now, I get it. Every single moment I spent in my favorite bar was perfection. Maybe you won’t know what a deductible is, maybe you won’t understand how to negotiate a salary, maybe your college education left you feeling utterly unequipped for the real world, but at least you will know how to nurse a hangover from cheap alcohol, and at least you will have friends that you can FaceTime at 7am on Sunday mornings to talk about how drunk you still are before falling back to sleep.

What even is the “real world”?

Allegedly now that I’m in the real world, I’m supposed to “have it all together.” And I think that I put on a good charade. But if we’re being honest, I don’t even know what “having it all together” entails, and I’m extremely disappointed that my “real world” includes about 89% less drinking than the MTV show with the same name. Like, where’s the Danny to my Melinda and why can’t I move out of MY house and then make a living completing arbitrary obstacle courses and having girl fights on tv?

The thing is, college prepared me for nothing except how to be a really good counselor. A few days before I graduated, I was having lunch with my favorite professor. Between her telling me what she really thought about some of my classmates and us discussing our future plans, I still found time to sob over our Indian food. “I’m equipped to do nothing” were my exact words.
And I still feel that way. I still don’t know how to balance a checkbook or my diet. I don’t know how much a house should cost per square foot and I can’t talk to the cable company on the phone without cursing/crying (can anyone?)
I don’t wanna make it sound like I learned nothing in college. I learned a lot of really valuable life lessons like wine makes most things better but wine hangovers make everything worse, or that the rule about alcohol freezing only applies to liquor. (I canNOT believe there was a time in my life when I didn’t know this but I found out the hard way that wine definitely freezes after an unfortunate Franzia situation in which the bag froze and it looked exactly like a placenta.)
I’ve also learned some things unrelated to wine, like the perfect lipstick will make weak men fear you but draw strong men to you and that Bronzer in the right places can change your whole life.
Obviously, college gave me a wealth of knowledge but is it practical? In one sense, no, because I still don’t know what a deductible is, but in a much more real sense….yes, because even though I don’t know how to set up a checking account, I do know to never trust a man with two first names. And, really, what’s going to get me further in the long run?

Drinking in Driscoll

Before you enter college, people tell you all sorts of things about what it’s going to be like. I expected my freshman year to include a 15 pound weight gain, a lot of drinking, a lot of boys, and a lot of hard work. I was 100% right, minus the hard work part.
Despite Counseling being a fabulous major choice for someone who eventually wants to go into Social Work, the 100 level courses mainly consist of talking about your feelings and writing “reflections” about how you felt the class went. I once wrote an entire paper on my BlackBerry on the way to New York. I got an A.
Because school work didn’t take up much of my time, I had a lot of free time to nap, drink, and try to avoid eye contact with the boys who lived in my dorm. It was exhausting. I lived in Driscoll Hall, the greatest place I’ve ever threatened to burn to the ground. With 3 floors of boys and 1 of girls, I was surrounded; it was awful. I blame most of the bad things that happened that year on the boys in that dorm. Once, two of them pulled me out of bed wearing footie pajamas (them, not me) and insisted I chug a mixture of vodka and beer. I was drunk by 3pm. Another time, I went downstairs to find one of them crying and spooning with a bottle of Captain Morgan. I was horrified at the scene and even more horrified that I had kissed this boy on more than six occasions (I hated literally everything about him but he lived right downstairs and it was nice to not have to go outside in the cold).
Driscoll Hall (also known at the “Dirty D” for reasons I learned but can’t repeat) was literally built to steal people’s dignity and ruin lives. Naturally, it’s one of my top three favorite places on Earth.
The first time I got cited was really not my fault. The second time wasn’t either. The third time was definitely my fault. The following is a recount only of what’s been told to me, considering I remember none of it.

Having put me to bed an hour earlier, my friends were all shocked to see me upright and trying to figure out why the water fountain wouldn’t flush. When they tried to put me back to bed, I became violent (this is when I decided to break up with vodka for a few months, as I have been known to overreact and sometimes become physical under the influence. Vodka and I have seen gotten back together and things remain cordial). I was screaming and insisting that one of my friends had “called me out.” This was the night that same friend had either eaten a cherry Chapstick/was throwing up blood (debate continues to this day about which it was). Needless to say, she had also been out for the count for quite some time and was in no shape to “call me out” on anything.
I then decided it would be a good idea to go downstairs and INSIST I sleep in one of the boys’ beds (whom I was by no means friends with) who was away for the weekend. His roommate was still there with his girlfriend. Apparently I caused quite a scene.

The next day I went to the caf in the same clothes I had worn and slept in the night before. I literally had no idea any of this happened until everyone filled me in.
When I met with the Area Coordinator to discuss what had happened, she filled out a slip referring me to a Counselor to discuss my “alcohol induced aggression” and not-so-gently suggested that I quit drinking all together and leave the University for the upcoming Parade Day. Sick joke.

semi-real grown ups know commitment is important

during the last week of college i gained 20 lbs. this is not an exaggeration. people thought i was wearing dresses because i was cute and girly but really it was because none of my shorts fit me. i also don’t think anyone actually thought i was cute and girly, and if they did, that thought was promptly quashed by the sight of me double-fisting cheap wine. speaking of which, my friends and i all became convinced that the University was trying to kill us via wine hangovers. during our “senior week” kick off party, there was an open bar with wine and beer. the wine was laced with rat poison (i’m probably legally required to say that this is a joke but to be honest i wouldn’t be surprised to find out either way). we were all too scarred to drink wine for the rest of the week. i think probably we had PTSD from blacking out and waking up shaking and with fevers. it seemed that the university was trying to turn us off drinking forever so that after graduation we could become functioning members of society (LOL AT THEM). but what happened instead was that we were all turned off from wine so we did shots. on at least 2 occasions during this week i forwent brushing my teeth because i thought Fireball whiskey was just as good (i still maintain this thought process. it freshens your breath and kills germs). Ke$ha was wrong x9103810 when she claimed she brushes her teeth with jack. no one could ever do that except alcoholics. brushing your teeth with FIREBALL is much more likely and also more pleasant because then you smell like cinnamon and not liquor.

i also started insisting that i stay at the bar as late as humanly possible because it was the last week ever i’d be at this bar. I yelled at my friends when they tried to take me home. here is an actual conversation that i’m 98% sure happened:

friend: the bar is closed, let’s go
friend: the owner is kicking people out we have to go

*30 seconds later*
owner of the bar: honey, time to go home its past 2am
me: ok, thanks so much for a great time see ya tomorrow!

or something like that. it was also during this conversation that i sent my OTHER friend the following series of texts:
“please pleae come over by the bathroom eveyone is trying to make me leave please come here i’m crying i need you
“are you at 919 im coming”
“if you go lemme know and i will murder myself and drag my corpse to the late night”

I was (and still am) VERY committed to drinking.
some people may say that this is all very dramatic but i kinda think that if you aren’t willing to die and then resurrect to bring your body out to a party, you’re probably not the type of person i want to go drinking with.