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Health 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
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The Lizard of Oz Offline
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Post: #2451
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
(04-19-2019 09:28 PM)etwsake Wrote:  Year four is finished.

Remember being a kid? Four years was a lifetime. That's an entire high school career. But now it goes by in a blink. Scary.

I'm signing up for year five as of April 20th, 2019.

Once again, thank you Lizard of Oz, and everyone else that has encouraged me to keep it up over the years. I appreciate it, gentlemen.

That is wonderful news, etwsake. I know you've had some hard times along the way -- maybe as hard as anyone here -- and I greatly respect and admire your perseverance with the wagon. Four years is not, in fact, a very long time -- but it's not short, either; it's a good thick chunk of time and to have that wagon mileage is like having a deposit in the bank made of solid gold. You may not be able to cash it in just yet, or for a while -- but you know it's there, and every nugget of the time you've put in counts.

Welcome back aboard for year 5 as of April 20, 2019 and I look forward to hearing more from you in this thread as time goes on.

same old shit, sixes and sevens Shaft...
04-21-2019 03:18 PM
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Post: #2452
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
I'm almost at the 4 month mark. I've decided to recommit myself to the wagon and stop fucking around.

This past friday I DD'd for a friend, we hit some bars and I drank club soda. I wasn't tempted to drink, but I was tempted to punch a few people in the face. Being around drunk, obnoxious barflies was hard enough when I was drinking. Sober? Fuggettabouttit.

The rest of the weekend i spent working at my bartending job. Some might think that I'd be tempted to drink there but that's never been an issue for me, even when I was actively drinking. What gets annoying is drunk customers wanting to buy me a shot.

I have had to accept the fact that I need to temper my expectations for this wagon. I won't be in a good mood most of the time and I won't be having fun. But that's the breaks. I'm slowly learning how this works.

As for socializing, going out, ect...I had already seen diminishing returns on that when I was still drinking. I had already grown sick and tired of drunk idiots, barsloots, bullshit conversation, ect. That shit has played itself out. If I'm to have a social life at this point it's going to have to re-invent itself, and the only way out is through. Finding new ways and means and all that. I think I've made things more difficult on myself thus far by having the expectation that this would somehow be 'more fun' or easy, or that I would see immediate results that would reward me for my abstinence. Well nothing in life worth having is easy, why would this be any different?

Changing behaviors and expecting to reap the benefits of the shitty behavior you were engaged in beforehand doesn't make much sense, does it?

This thread has become like my personal AA meeting...I don't go to AA meetings in real life because they're gay as fuck, and full of crybabies.

Thanks everyone, keep up the good work.
(This post was last modified: 04-22-2019 01:56 PM by Rhyme or Reason.)
04-22-2019 01:55 PM
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Post: #2453
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
Hey Rhyme

Way to go, man. Keep it up. A month or so back, you were pretty frustrated. Glad you’re sticking with it. It’ll get easier and you’ll find your stride.

Awesome that you had the willpower to stay the course even with tending bar.

I agree with you about AA meetings. I went to one meeting many years ago and it was a downer. This thread is much better.
04-23-2019 07:20 PM
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flanders Offline
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Post: #2454
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
I set my old quitting date as 4/11/2017 even though in hindsight it was probably a bit earlier since a wakeup call at a doctor's office in that month served as the impetus to quit. I unwisely keep no daily ledger to mark a particular date so its set at 4/11 since its easier to remember.

I didnt go into a lot of details in my one year sobriety post on this thread last year partly because the risk of being "found out" on the internet is always there and my medical diagnosis is not extremely common (it might even be a self doxx) and would likely affect future employment. Some day I may comment in far greater detail but not until I dont care if I get fired or quietly prevented from advancement.

That being said its safe to say I'm glad to have been sober the last two years. Its been an eye opener for sure.

If you suffer from a serious drinking problem you may never know exactly why you drink as heavily as you do until you quit. For me it was partly a coping mechanism for misery, financial problems, medical problems and serious sleep problems. Getting shitwrecked made all those nagging chronic worries and problems go away for a little while and made me feel great for a few hours (and able to "cure" insomnia temporarily by passing out blackout drunk) but it was no lasting fix and always created more problems in the end. Like all chemicals, the party is going to be over some day and you alone have to decide when and how its going to go down.

Since quitting drinking I notice nothing but benefits. Even half assing a gym routine I have gotten stronger and more muscular, like nutrient partitioning works better for no apparent reason. Getting out of bed regularly and actually enjoying a day of labor or leisure happens regularly instead of infrequently.

Sleep quality is better overall. I have less generalized anxiety, theres always a lot of money in my checking account to buy healthy things like nutrient rich food.

The year I quit drinking I made the most amount of money I ever made in my life. Last year I made even more yet, by nearly 25% increase and i may go further this year.

While doing so I dumped nearly all the difference into investment accounts and towards debt, so soon all my serious problems may be completely over and done with. I'm slowly digging myself out of this hole and might get my goal accomplished of being debt free and even prudently invested several years ahead of schedule and on an income some of you guys might think is chicken feed, and quitting drinking is one of the biggest reasons why.

Granted its not all about money as I have regained control of life in other ways but paying off massive sums of debt is what Im most proud of.
(This post was last modified: 04-23-2019 11:52 PM by flanders.)
04-23-2019 11:47 PM
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77market Offline
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Post: #2455
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
Seven months and grateful every day!
05-24-2019 09:33 PM
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Lampwick Offline
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Post: #2456
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
I'm one week away from the four month mark. As I mentioned in the NoFap thread, the hardest part about quitting my vices has been avoiding porn. I think a regular sleep schedule and no alcohol has helped a lot. Otherwise the urges are too hard to resist.

I don't mind not drinking that much. Adapting to new social patterns is a challenge though. A lot of socialization occurs late at night and drinking. I'm going to focus more on doing physical activities during the day and building a social circle that way.
05-27-2019 04:19 PM
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Polniy_Sostav Offline
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Post: #2457
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
Well done Lampwick
a little tip : try to get friends with people not drinking.
05-27-2019 04:37 PM
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Post: #2458
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
I’m a few days shy of 8 months, currently at a resort in Mexico with free drinks but the vibe here is pretty lame (mostly Mexican families) so I’m not overly tempted although I did take a second look at some of the margaritas I saw people drinking at bars in the city. I went on a date with a chica last night and she ordered a cocktail and insisted I try it, after refusing it twice I caved in and took a tiny sip, just enough to wet my whistle, it was sugary and gross. I think this has been covered on here before but I’m pretty sure a minuscule sip doesn’t count as falling off the wagon.

Don’t sweat the petty things, pet the sweaty things.
05-27-2019 05:16 PM
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Post: #2459
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
(05-27-2019 05:16 PM)scotian Wrote:  I’m a few days shy of 8 months, currently at a resort in Mexico with free drinks but the vibe here is pretty lame (mostly Mexican families) so I’m not overly tempted although I did take a second look at some of the margaritas I saw people drinking at bars in the city. I went on a date with a chica last night and she ordered a cocktail and insisted I try it, after refusing it twice I caved in and took a tiny sip, just enough to wet my whistle, it was sugary and gross. I think this has been covered on here before but I’m pretty sure a minuscule sip doesn’t count as falling off the wagon.

We'll let this one slide, but going forward no sips please. They don't do anyone any good, and the chica has to hear a NO sooner or later, as you well know. I predicted earlier in this thread that the warm season would test you, and here it is; but it's still up to you to simply stick to your guns and keep going, no matter if the vibe is lame, glamorous, or anything in between. Some men's resolve is tested more by pain, and others' by pleasure; I think you are in the latter category. But you are more than capable of sustaining it if you just remember to do so in the right moment. That's really all it takes, but it does take that.

same old shit, sixes and sevens Shaft...
05-27-2019 06:22 PM
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Post: #2460
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
I didn't know this thread existed. Quit since 01/01/2018 as a new years resolution. Beer was easy, whiskey, liquor and mixed drinks was tougher. I'm lucky that down here where I am its either 100% raging drunk or 0% abstainers. It would be a lot harder if I lived in Canada or the Midwest where beer goes with everything social.

Why do the heathen rage and the people imagine a vain thing? Psalm 2:1 KJV
05-27-2019 06:27 PM
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Post: #2461
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
Last week, I completed 5 years on the wagon. As The Lizard of Oz would say, "many seasons have passed" since I have had a drink and in that time my resolve to staying sober has only grown stronger.

For guys who might be in their first few months or year of the wagon and have just passed a milestone of experiencing a sober holiday, birthday party, or event which in the past traditionally involved drinking, it may feel like a real accomplishment that you could get through that occasion sober. In fact, this is probably why many think the first year of sobriety is the most difficult.

I remember thinking after I first started getting some momentum following my first year on the wagon, that it would be great if I could just stay sober for the rest of my life. I had a false sense of confidence that comes with inexperience, where my ego was telling me that I can easily stay sober for the rest of life, since I had already completed the first year which was the hardest part. Naturally, while I was entertaining the thought of “easily staying sober forever” I was also having many other moments of doubt about if I could really never have a drink again. Looking back, I wish I could tell myself that it is no good thinking about what my relationship with booze would be in the future, it’s much better to just take it day by day.

While there are whole industries that are centered around self-improvement, most of the information could be whittled down to a simple formula of stop doing X and replace that with Y and then continue with that until it’s a habit. For instance, everyone knows that if you eat clean and just exercise 3-5 times a week the results will start to compound until you have a decent physique. If most people want a decent physique why does the average person look fat and out of shape? This is a rhetorical question obviously, since it’s clear that most people do not have the discipline to commit to healthy eating and exercising over long periods of time. Many give up after a few months of small improvements and never stick with the positive habits long enough to see how much they can change in a year or more.

I think quitting drinking is a much deeper challenge than diet and exercise, certainly for me, but the central principle of the compounding results are the same. The long-term rewards take time. After the first year or two you will notice your health, finances, relationships, and outlook on life improving, often substantially from where you were. But the thing about a past of heavy alcohol use is that you need to let time do the heavy lifting about changing your mindset and relationship with alcohol. Even after the first couple years of sobriety, there will be moments of doubt about the power of alcohol and you may worry if you can really go on staying sober perhaps indefinitely. These moments of doubt go away after enough “seasons” of sobriety, and because you know what you have been through in sobriety you can feel a sense of conviction that your experience on the wagon thus far has prepared you for anything that lies ahead as you take things day by day.

I will be renewing my commitment to another year of sobriety and signing up for year 6.

Finally, I want to say that whatever direction RVF goes in the future it should not affect the members interested in or currently on the wagon. This thread is 100 pages long and is one of the best collective sources of perspective, shared experience and encouragement that exits anywhere on quitting alcohol and what being sober is about.

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"Chicks dig power, men dig beauty, eggs are expensive, sperm is cheap, men are expendable, women are perishable." - Heartiste
05-30-2019 04:49 AM
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The Lizard of Oz Offline
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Post: #2462
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
bacon, thank you for that great post. For once, I have nothing to add.

Welcome back aboard for year 6 (the first time I have the privilege of writing these words in the thread) as of May 24, 2019 and I look forward to hearing more from you here as time goes on.

same old shit, sixes and sevens Shaft...
05-30-2019 07:45 PM
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Post: #2463
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
Officially at 8 months today, LOZ I explained to the chica that I’m doing a year without booze and that’s why I was ordering water instead of beer and she was cool with it, so no more pressure to taste her drink. We’re heading to a remote beach today, should be fun, maybe I’ll taste her vagina instead.

Don’t sweat the petty things, pet the sweaty things.
(This post was last modified: 05-31-2019 10:38 AM by scotian.)
05-31-2019 10:37 AM
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Post: #2464
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
I'm at 75 days without a drink. Also gave up smoking and toking. I used the Catholic Lent season (40 day fast before easter) and then just kept going.

“Where the danger is, so grows the saving element.” ~ German poet Hoelderlin
06-01-2019 12:52 AM
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Post: #2465
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
(05-31-2019 10:37 AM)scotian Wrote:  Officially at 8 months today, LOZ I explained to the chica that I’m doing a year without booze and that’s why I was ordering water instead of beer and she was cool with it, so no more pressure to taste her drink. We’re heading to a remote beach today, should be fun, maybe I’ll taste her vagina instead.

Congratulations. I do this since eternity almost since I ve almost never been drinking . The second step is not to allow drinking to your partner .
My wife ( she wasn't my wife back them ) once took a beer and I told her to change her order . Since we were with friends my decision was challenged but a few years later and 2 kids more she is now thankful and looks down at women drinking .

Tell her " if you want to be with me you have to stop drinking ; I don't want a woman of average quality to be my partner "
06-01-2019 02:48 AM
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Kentemo Offline
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Post: #2466
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
Quote:Tell her " if you want to be with me you have to stop drinking ; I don't want a woman of average quality to be my partner "

Seriously? I can understand if she's an alcoholic. But if she orders a piña colada or a cocktail you'd have a problem with this?

Drinking occasional alcohol isn't the same as ''average quality''.
06-06-2019 03:55 AM
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Post: #2467
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
Speaking of girls who drink in your presence, I remember something Ace Frehley said regarding kicking his old alcohol habit.

Asked if his issues had contributed to the “toxicity” within Kiss, he said, “In the past, yeah. They were right about a lot of things. I mean, today I have no tolerance for being around drunk people. I put those guys through hell – if I do say so myself – but, I mean, I get it. But it took a while for me to understand.”

“I got sober a couple of times over the years… but invariably I’d relapse because I’d get on a bus with a bunch of musicians who were getting high, smoking pot and drinking beer and whatever. How long you gonna last on a bus before you end up saying, ‘Gimme a cold one’? … So, pretty much, my addiction sponsor said to me, ‘The only way you’re gonna get sober, Ace, is if you get rid of all the people around you who get high, and surround yourself with sober people… or at least with musicians who keep it behind closed doors… You don’t want to see it, you don’t want to smell it. And that’s what I’ve been doing.”
(This post was last modified: 06-08-2019 11:25 AM by Soothesayer.)
06-08-2019 11:25 AM
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Post: #2468
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
In three days, my year will be complete. Not a drop. It's been a breeze. I forgot about the wagon a few months in.

I feel no need to now go out and drink in the foreseeable future, nor do I feel compelled to remain on the wagon for another extended period of time.

Good things have come from the wagon.

Of course, the best thing about it is the events that didn't happen.

Sobriety is a psychological barrier to gambling and I have found it impossible to do this whilst on the wagon. I have also largely been able to refrain from porn use- there is no longer that craving to feel better when you get hangovers.

I've lost about 24 lbs of weight. I have not been able to build on this via the gym, due to a shoulder injury caused by drinking.

My side hustle has eclipsed my previous career in finance in terms of money and time left to myself. This leaves me with incredible freedom of movement and with plenty of savings. I am convinced the wagon contributed to this.

After a year of sober thought I find myself no longer in agreement with the fundamentals of this forum.

That is, that 1) almost any man can, with effort and persistence, make himself amicable to women and reach sexual success with them.
2) Happiness is to be found through regularly fornicating with beautiful women.

The combination of these two has wreaked untold misery upon myself and I believe that the deluded short-termist haze of drunkenness maintained this idiocy within me.

To hell with it all I say. Books and nature are what I enjoy, I will get what my accursed biology craves from women through paying for it.

My thanks to TLOZ for his initiating and maintaining this thread.
06-14-2019 07:46 AM
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Post: #2469
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
pirate, thanks for the post -- I look forward to congratulating you on a completed 1 year wagon in a couple of days.

In the meantime, given your own estimation of the benefits of the wagon, I hope you will strongly consider a 1 year extension. It may seem unnecessary now -- you feel no need or desire to go out and drink, so why bother with the formalities? But the truth is that our moods, needs, and desires can change, and change rapidly; you only need to look back on your last year to convince yourself of this. A formal structure in which you make a commitment for a set period of time (one year is best for many reasons) and stake your pride on seeing it through is extremely useful, and gives you something firmer and more definite to lean on than mere moods. In my opinion, the very fact that you were prompted to say that you do not "feel compelled to remain on the wagon for another extended period of time" is all the more reason that you should do precisely that; it shows that you have some resentment, however unconscious, of the constraints imposed by the wagon -- and given all the beneficial changes that you yourself ascribe to the wagon, this chafing against the constraints betrays a more complex and volatile mix of emotions than you may readily like to acknowledge, even to yourself. It is important to continue to chasten these emotions, and no better way to do that than by another orderly wagon extension. Please give it some serious thought.

As far as one's attitude towards women and erotic success and failure, that is a complex subject and one that is probably best not addressed in this thread. I wrote a post about this a few years ago that you may find of some interest (along with subsequent posts in that thread); give it a look sometime.

same old shit, sixes and sevens Shaft...
06-15-2019 10:58 AM
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Post: #2470
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
This thread may be more relevant to this forum now that the older members are leaving the player lifestyle.

Don't spend all your energy on sex and all your money on women; they have destroyed kings. (Proverbs 31:3 GNB)
07-03-2019 11:50 PM
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Post: #2471
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
I want to give this another shot after failing my first wagon after 3 months.
Having a last beer now, and going to jump back on the wagon starting of tomorrow 5th of June 2019.

I had a hangover again yesterday and I feel 1/3th of my life is just partying and making meaningless connections.
I don't feel I am really accomplishing much to be honest.

Then I compare myself with young people like Cori Gauff, who recently beat Venus William in Wimbledon at 15 years (!!!) old, and I am like ''what am I working towards? What are my goals?''. Just getting wasted isn't going to cut it anymore.
(This post was last modified: 07-04-2019 12:35 PM by Kentemo.)
07-04-2019 12:34 PM
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Post: #2472
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
9 months in as of 4 days ago, on the home stretch now boys. I still haven’t had too much temptation to drink as I’ve been busy at work and often in work camps which don’t allow booze but now I’m staying in hotels so I could drink but the desire just isn’t there, especially since I hate working hung over.

I have been thinking “what next” though, I’m not sure if I’ll continue with the wagon or not because I originally decided to do it because I knew I was going to be working as much as possible over the span of about 15 months, which I’m 11 months into, 9 of those on the no booze wagon. Not drinking has definitely made it easier to be working so much, often in really shitty places, it certainly helped in the winter when I was working in Saskatchewan, in a frozen shit hole town of 15,000. Now I’m working in a much nicer area so it isn’t so bad.

Anyway, if I do drink again after my year is up it will be at a much less intense manner; no more pounding 8 beers then doing a half dozen shots. My college age type drinking was catching up with me, it was time to put a brake on it and reassess my booze consumption, so far the wagon has taught me a lot- mainly that I don’t need to drink to have fun, no one really gives a shit if I don’t drink and life without hangovers is great.

Don’t sweat the petty things, pet the sweaty things.
07-04-2019 07:17 PM
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Post: #2473
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
(07-04-2019 07:17 PM)scotian Wrote:  9 months in as of 4 days ago, on the home stretch now boys. I still haven’t had too much temptation to drink as I’ve been busy at work and often in work camps which don’t allow booze but now I’m staying in hotels so I could drink but the desire just isn’t there, especially since I hate working hung over.

I have been thinking “what next” though, I’m not sure if I’ll continue with the wagon or not because I originally decided to do it because I knew I was going to be working as much as possible over the span of about 15 months, which I’m 11 months into, 9 of those on the no booze wagon. Not drinking has definitely made it easier to be working so much, often in really shitty places, it certainly helped in the winter when I was working in Saskatchewan, in a frozen shit hole town of 15,000. Now I’m working in a much nicer area so it isn’t so bad.

Anyway, if I do drink again after my year is up it will be at a much less intense manner; no more pounding 8 beers then doing a half dozen shots. My college age type drinking was catching up with me, it was time to put a brake on it and reassess my booze consumption, so far the wagon has taught me a lot- mainly that I don’t need to drink to have fun, no one really gives a shit if I don’t drink and life without hangovers is great.

My advice, based on my modest experience with this, is to seriously consider a second year without any break. I took a short break at the end of my one year, planning to sign up for another year shortly after, and it was a mistake. The benefits accrued after one year are more fragile than it seems at the time, and although you may begin with measured and responsible drinking, if you have a recent history of drinking eight beers followed by shots, you'll be right back there before you know it. Booze is far too much fun to do anything otherwise.
07-05-2019 01:29 PM
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etwsake Offline
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Post: #2474
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
I was the same way. First time I finished a one year wagon, I went out drinking within a few days of its completion. Within days, I was right back to where I was before getting blackout drunk, as if I'd never taken a break.
07-06-2019 05:02 AM
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DTD309 Offline
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Post: #2475
RE: 1 Year Drinking Wagon Challenge for 2014
(07-06-2019 05:02 AM)etwsake Wrote:  I was the same way. First time I finished a one year wagon, I went out drinking within a few days of its completion. Within days, I was right back to where I was before getting blackout drunk, as if I'd never taken a break.

Ditto.

I'm a little more than halfway though my current wagon (started 1/1). Much easier this time around although had an involuntary slip a few weeks ago. Happy hour at a craft beer place that insisted they had a NA brew (long story, but just know that I asked twice for confirmation and told them I am not to have alcohol). Took down two pints, thought, good flavor, much better than other NA beers I have tried.

Drive home... what's that warm feeling... shit... moderate beer buzz. Felt absolutely deflated. It was not my intent to drink and thought I had done enough due diligence. Lesson learned... if you can't see it on the package, assume it has alcohol in it.

So we can say that my wagon had a technical fault. You might wonder why I didn't taste the alcohol in the supposedly NA beer and stop drinking. Well, my "drinking career" has been mostly at 80 proof and I can't actually taste alcohol burn in most any beverage. More evidence of a heavy drinking past, I suppose.
07-10-2019 05:56 PM
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