My sister, shrewd in her devious ways, left me the repulsive Golden Monkeys remaining from her variety pack because she knew there is nothing I will not drink. I managed to avoid their primatial taunts of “ooh ahh wah ooh gulp us down you worthless smelly heathen ooh ahh wahh ooh,” cracking only one open on the day the presidential election results were finally called, for nothing says “a celebration for something debatably not worth celebrating” than a foul, viscous, dark beer with high alcohol content that you probably heavily abused in your late teens.
I’ve always been a “cut the bullshit” kind of girl when it comes to drinking, a tenet that I wish would extend to my love life to overpower my high tolerance for men and their knack for temporization and, you know, bullshit. A recent discovery that a heavy shot of liquor followed by a few light beers gets the job done just as well when dumped into an achingly empty stomach made this occasion rare, but if I commit to downing a heavy beer, despite its excess of empty calories, then I see to it that the process is swift.
Hard ciders may be deliciously refreshing and fun to drink with your homies, but I can gobble down 1500 calories worth of them and still perform brain surgery, so no, but thank you, y’all got any seasonal stouts on the menu? 14% ABV, you say? Great! Can I go ahead and order two? I don’t want my inability to walk in a straight line after chugging the first one inhibit me from getting a second!
Shots, ladies?! No? Well, if I say I am going to the bathroom and take 20 minutes, don’t worry, I’m not crying and I don’t have diarrhea: I’m just gulping a couple back-to-back in a hidden corner of the bar, far away from you losers.
If you aren’t a fucking downer and not only agree to partake in shots, but are polite enough to go order them, do not come back with Fireball: I will be greatly offended that you presumed that to be my preference, and not because of Fireball’s reputation of being a liquor designated for children and general trash because that has never deterred me before, but because it only contains 33% alcohol. If you thought that missing 7% that I am sure this shithole bar’s rail whiskey has wouldn’t matter to me, you thought wrong, just like how I thought we were friends.
In case you are not familiar with a Golden Monkey, let me despoil your ignorance because I am envious of it and can’t be happy for people who are happier than me: It is a “Belgian-style tripel ale with added spice” with an ABV of 9.4%. If that made no sense because you are not a beer douche, let me put it into layman’s terms: It’s a craft version of Steel Reserve 211, the malt liquor flavored like beer instead of the more formidable, fruity varieties, such as Four Lokos.
Through many years of poverty, 211 was my beloved, my rock, my solace, warming my soul with its glory in ways that a $2.99 bottle of wine never could!
One evening, upon noticing me nursing a plastic 40oz of the precious ichor, my best friend said, “Dude, did I ever tell you the story of the first time [this boy who didn’t want a goddamn thing to do with me] ever had a 211?”
“No!” I gasped, my eyes lighting up. My baby also loves my other baby? Is this how a single mother feels when she finally brings home a man who bothers to acknowledge her child?
“You are absolutely not allowed to tell him I told you this.”
I assured her that he was not speaking to me; I had deleted his phone number to eliminate the risk of threatening to put an irreversible curse on his bloodline unless he provided me with a five page, single-spaced essay explaining why he suddenly fell silent, albeit I think it was I who was not speaking to him; and though I blocked and unblocked him on all social media accounts approximately six times a day, his status at the present time was still blocked, and if that changed within the following hour, then it was her fault for reminding me of how pretty he was. I was doing just fine on my own.
“[His best friend, her boyfriend at the time] gave him one before a party, immediately lost him when they walked in, spent the whole time panicking like a mom who misplaced her kid in a fuckin’ department store during holiday season, and finally found him stumbling out of a room, grinning like a total moron with period blood all over his face.”
I shrugged. “Oh, that’s not so bad.”
Granted, I once licked my own period blood off of his dick like it was melted ice cream dripping down my waffle cone on a blazing hot day, and I was sober, so maybe I’m not the best pick for jury duty on this particular case, but he simply fell victim to a more brazen, amateur manifestation of 211’s formidable powers. Almost every teenager has been violated by malt liquor — At 17, I chugged my first lemon Four Loko, gave my party guests permission to use my bedroom for all the coitus their little hearts desired, immediately regretted it upon hearing the distinct squeaking of my rickety-ass bed frame turn violent, started walking in that general direction, and fell.
Determined to not stick my hungover face in a pile of someone else’s blend of semen and cottage cheese later, I crawled to my bedroom, where I slammed on the door, yelling, “NOT ON MY BED! NOT THE BED! THE FLOOR! NO BED!”
Pressing my ear to the door, I heard a few more squeaks, two drunken bodies plopping on the floor, a bit of scurrying, and what I believed to be an aggressive spank, followed by giggling. “Heh, sorry Rose. We don’t mind a little rug burn.”
I couldn’t even smell Four Lokos until a year or so later, when I was taken advantage of by the cotton candy flavor. I locked myself in my friend’s closet and texted Bloody Face, saying, “Look, I can get you alcohol from my connect, anytime, whenever you need it… All you have to do is let me suck your yummy dick.”
(….You see, I was in the closet because after disclosing to her my brilliant plan to make such a gracious offer he could never refuse, the homie, being the good homie that she was, threatened to take my phone from me, but once a plan is set in motion, there is no stopping it….)
She was kicking the closet door, jiggling the doorknob, screaming, “Let me in, you fucking idiot! You’re making yourself too available! We’ve been over this! You’re going to be mad in the morning! We are supposed to be aloof!”
I relented after about ten minutes, with the reason for the delay being that it took me that long to type out a coherent version of my generous proposition. My friend did not confiscate my phone seeing as the damage had already been done, but she did wrestle the Four Loko can from my grubby paws and dumped the remainder down the toilet.
(When reminiscing over it years later, the Pussy Vampire said, “You know, Rose, I have signed plenty of contracts, but I have never been offered a better deal than that one. That is still my proudest moment, and probably your least.”
It barely scrapes the top five, but I kept that to myself.)
By the time Steel Reserve strolled into my life, I was not only an adult, but a professional drunk; I had composure. I considered myself to be far above making amateur errors such as slurring, sending jumbled, messy texts, horniness in general, stumbling, and/or making my long-awaited return to a room full of strangers with period blood all over my face.
Alas, despite my skill level and appearance, I was never immune to the ways in which malt liquor make you look like a fucking asshole. Perniciously.
Profoundly broke at the time (which is precisely how I wound up in a subtly abusive relationship with boozy, fake beer that tastes like transmission fluid), I knew that a 40oz of 211 was $2.37, exactly, for everyday, I would drink half before work and half after.
One desolate evening where I had approximately 60 cents in my bank account, I pilfered the $2.37 in change from random nooks and crannies in my house, somehow lost a dime in transit to the convenience store, and dug around in my car for half an hour until I found it. Shameless, hopeless, and fearing that the gas station across the street would charge $2.42 instead, I marched back in to retrieve my nectar.
“You left before I could tell you, but you didn’t have to worry about the dime. I would have just let you take it,” the cashier said.
I didn’t know whether to cry or blow him, which I wish was an unfamiliar predicament in my life, but it isn’t.
As my financial situation stabilized over the years, I grew up and out from Steel Reserve. As my mental health unstabilized, I took to drinking only hard liquor — chugging, really — which leads us to last night, where I was fresh out of my preferred cheap-but-not-rotgut rum. I gazed into my fridge: there were two tall boys of Miller Lite and two of those fucking derisive Golden Monkeys.
“Do I hate myself today?” I wondered aloud as I reflected on day 267 of unemployment: noting that I wrote one whole essay and even walked downstairs to print it, so I reached for the Miller Lite. Sometime between emptying that and moping my way back to the fridge, I decided that I liked myself a little bit less (probably because my mind was warped enough to consider Miller Lite a reward for good behavior and thought my dog farted on me when the rotten stink was actually my own breath blowing back at me), so I sacrificed one monkey, went back to murder its mate since it was probably set to die of a broken heart, anyway, brought up that story to Menstrual Mouth after deciding that waiting five years to make fun of him about it was long enough, threw up, and went to bed.
Ooh ahh wah ooh, indeed.