It’s a sad fact that I’m long past the age when that question should be on my lips. It’s also a sad fact that I asked myself that very question this New Year’s Eve.
I only had three pints. Honest. And I was home by 9 PM.
In my defense, I was fighting a cold, and I didn’t feel much like eating. Many people would consider it unwise to start slugging down beer when one’s entire food consumption for the day has been two slices of toast, an apple, a granola bar, and some guacamole. Apparently, I am not one of those people.
The beer was very tasty. I had good intentions to anchor it with a pizza, but the pub cook dropped my pizza in the kitchen (no, I’m not making that up). So they had to make it again, and by the time it arrived, I’d already downed a pint.
Let’s just say it was a very effective pint. I strive for efficiency in all things, and in this case I outdid myself. By the time the pizza arrived, it was far too late to act as an anchor. All it did was bob like a pathetic dinghy in the rough swells of my second pint.
The third pint was, frankly, unnecessary. But oh, so tasty.
At approximately 1.2 pints, I achieved the correct level of intoxication for shooting eight-ball. Anything under a pint, and I’m trying too hard. At the magical “optimum beer saturation level” (OBSL), pool becomes easy. I can still triangulate with both eyeballs. I effortlessly calculate angles, the cue feels like an extension of my own arm, and I sink balls one after the other, swaggering around the table with only a tiny bit of cockiness to clear the table and sink the eight-ball.
The problem is, it’s impossible to maintain OBSL. Exactly one game after achieving it, it slips away again, at which point I might as well try to guide the cue ball using the Force. ‘Cause I sure as hell can’t guide it with the cue anymore.
We rang in the New Year for St. John’s, Newfoundland at 8:30 local time (thank goodness we live in a multiple-time-zone country), and headed home. Walking, fortunately. At least the cold didn’t bother me.
I went upstairs to change my clothes.
I couldn’t find them.
I stumbled around the bedroom, looking in all the usual places. Closet: Nope. Bathroom: Nuh-uh. Chair in the corner: Not there either. At last, I discovered them cleverly hidden in plain sight, lying on the bed. (It was dark in there. Never mind.)
I’m a little foggy on how that could have happened, because when I know I’m going to put the same clothes on later, I usually leave them where I removed them. The walk-in closet and the ensuite bathroom are the usual locations. If I had actually taken off my clothes beside the bed, I’d have been mooning the neighbours. And that was when I was sober.
I guess I’ll never know for sure. But if the neighbours avert their eyes and snicker the next time they see me, I’ll have a pretty good idea.
Happy New Beer!