Few people would believe me if I told them that I was a teetotaler. Maybe it is because of my looks- not that I resemble the Bollywood villain’s sidekicks who keep laughing for no reason and get the leftover of the girl the villain rapes-but I ain’t no chocolate boy either; I can pass for bad-ass if I want to. Or maybe it is because of the general trend these days- alcohol consumption is a common thing among guys of my age. I like to believe it’s the latter reason. Moving on, I hereby declare that I am a teetotaler. And as pure as they come. I haven’t tasted a drop of alcohol or smoked a cigarette ever(here I am taking the liberty of excluding the passive smoking I’ve been doing). And this trait has brought me its fair share of roses and brickbats.
As I already mentioned, guys like me are a minority these days. And a teetotaler in an engineering college is a rarer site than a dinosaur taking poo in your backyard. That being said, the fact that I am writing this blog, can pretty much assure you that,unlike T-Rex, my species is not extinct. But we are endangered indeed.
The worst part about being a teetotaler is that almost all your friends think you are a
moron nerd retard sinner! The most common reaction I get is “What? You don’t drink?” accompanied by a dropping of the jaw to ‘-3’ level and followed by a contemptuous round of laughter. As if I had just said that I had a crush on Poonam Pandey. I have been called a ‘pussy’, compared to girls (though I couldn’t figure out the difference between the two), my potency has been called into questioning and I’ve even been declared ‘socially dead’ in many of my friend’s circles. I have been coaxed, compelled, criticized and I see no reason not to believe that I might actually be the first guy to be ostracized for being too civilized!
Why, after all these years, am I writing this post now? Well, it is because now I have started feeling the pinch the most. It’s placement season in my college and there are endless reasons to celebrate. Celebrations invariably include booze and joints. So my condition is pretty much like a thirsty man on an island surrounded by an ocean full of saline water. I can’t refuse to go on a treat because then I’ll be a party pooper. And if I go, well, even then I am a party pooper! So much for choices, right?!!
I find myself out of place in a bar. Like a burqah clad girl at a nude beach. Especially the part when the waiter walks up to us and takes our orders. Amidst the calls for BP, Signature and Bacardi, suddenly there’s an order for a 7Up! The waiter gives me such dirty looks as if I had tried to rape his sister. I swear to God that in the last booze treat that I attended, the bartender intentionally didn’t respond to my calls for chakna thrice, before finally sliding a plate across the table with utmost ruthlessness! I felt like the guy with the smallest dick in the room who had just asked for a one-night stand with Megan Fox. I can’t blame him, for my own friends behave in a similar fashion. I felt awkward in the beginning but now I’ve started taking it in my stride. I have gotten accustomed to seeing perfectly sane people transform into complete lunatics after a few pegs of their favourite poisons. Everyone knows the drill right? Drink → laugh → drink → shout → drink → curse→ drink→ vomit→ drink → attain nirvana → drink → pass out.
It’s sort of an entertainment, with people talking nonsense and behaving in ways you would never get to see them normally. But after a point it becomes boring. Irritating even. I mean, except the fact that I don’t understand why people resort to something as useless and harmful as drinking, it’s a big time waste of money. Especially when it’s the hard-earned money of your parents. Anyway, I don’t care what my friends do with their parents money as much as I care for my own health. That is why I dislike smoking more than drinking. Scientifically speaking, in a bar I am the guy who’s smoking the most joints. And I’m not even getting the much hyped, completely over rated ‘high’! Yes, I do cough a lot. Yes, my eyes burn like hot coals and turn red.And I do get a headache. So, is that the ‘high’ I’ve been hearing about?
And drinking ain’t no holy cow either. I have been strictly advised by a doctor not to consume cold-drinks because of my bronchitis. Still, just for the sake of giving company to my friends and being a sport, I drink it. The next few days, I keep coughing like hell. And then I had to graduate to mock-tails, partly to fulfill my friends’ demands and partly to save myself from further embarrassment in front of waiters and bartenders. Sadly, demands never cease. I couldn’t post-graduate to ‘the real stuff’ ( as my buddies tell me) and so I’m pretty much doomed to live with a healthy liver for the rest of my life! Plus I’ve to occasionally drag dead bodies all the way back to the hostel and assist the critically injured too.
So you see, it ain’t easy being a teetotaler. Anyway, there’s another booze party coming up day after tomorrow. Maybe, this time the bartender would behave nicely. Maybe, this time not too many guys would puke on my jacket. Maybe, this time my friends would respect my choice of living too. Maybe, this time I would say no and save myself all the troubles. Maybe…