How to Stay Classy and Safe While Drinking
After an exhausting week of classes, it’s time to unwind. How do most college students relax on a Friday night? For me, it usually includes hanging out with my friends, a few glasses of wine, and a couple of parties. For others, it’s slamming shots, chugging beers and waking up the next morning not entirely sure of how you got home.
Now, I am not saying that all college students are complete drunkards, but the fact is, most college students drink alcohol. Drinking alcohol is a part of the college experience, but that doesn’t mean that you should drink yourself under the table: it’s just not classy. Here are my tried and true tips for not getting too drunk and maintaining some of your dignity:
Eat something before you drink. You do not need to stuff yourself, but try to eat a little something before you start drinking. Carbohydrates and healthy fats, like mixed nuts or a slice of whole wheat bread with peanut butter, are your best bet. Eating will slow down the rate your body absorbs the alcohol into your blood stream, and will help you better control the amount you consume.
Know Your Limit. If you are making your own drinks, grab a shot glass and pour only one shot per drink. This is called a “standard drink” and is what is used to determine your blood alcohol content (BAC) and makes it easier to track your legal limit. For example, if you drank two standard rum and Cokes in two hours, your BAC would be 0.042 percent. However, if you just poured your alcohol into a cup and mixed it with Coke, you have no way of knowing your limit. Count your drinks and do the math to avoid binge drinking and jail time.
Don’t drink the punch. ‘Trashcan punch’ can be yummy, but it can also be very alcoholic. It is always best to avoid the punch unless you know exactly what and how much is in it. If you didn’t make it, don’t drink it. Things can easily be slipped into communal drinks, and it makes it hard to watch your alcohol intake. Trashcan punch is usually made with a lot of soda or juice, so you might not notice the half gallon of Everclear mixed in.
If you do happen to drink too much, but don’t want to have to live the night down for years to come, here are some ways to avoid making a fool of yourself:
1. Abandon your cell phone. Okay, don’t really abandon it, but put it away or give it to a friend to hold on to for the night. Drunk dialing and drunk texting can become quite humiliating the next morning. Trust me on this one: it’s not fun if your mother asks you the next day if you meant to call her to make a beer run.
2. Abandon your drink. Why would you continue to drink if you are already drunk? Switch out that vodka tonic for a glass of water. Keeping hydrated won’t lessen your drunk that night, but it will help lessen your hangover in the morning.
3. Don’t abandon your friends. When you go to a party or a club, it is always best to leave with the people you came with. You are drunk, which means you aren’t in prime decision making mode. Your friends, and hopefully, a designated driver, will ensure you get home safely.
Drinking alcohol in college can be a lot of fun (assuming you are 21 years old) but, nobody wants to be “That Girl” or “That Guy” the next morning. So, drink slowly, in moderation, follow these tips, and you should avoid any embarrassment or hangover the next morning.
Cheers and stay classy!
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