Season to be Jolly…

Maybe not, after alcohol was voted the most dangerous drug in modern society in a research by Doctor Nutt (no joke) recently published in the Lancet medical journal. It is more dangerous than heroin, apparently. Personally, call me old fashioned, I would prefer to see my Mum having a second glass of wine than holding a syringe in one hand and shooting up at the table.

There are lots of reasons for people to overdo it at Christmas; perhaps you need a little something to take the edge off things, if you are heading off to see your family. There is nothing like some unresolved issues with your parents or continuous sibling rivalry to really fuel the emotions over the festive dinner table.

Maybe you need to take the edge off over-bearing parents, who want to spend every spare minute of the holiday with you. Maybe it is dealing with the visit to your in-laws, which pushes you to having a couple of drinks. Maybe it is the financial stresses of Christmas, where there seem to be so many presents to buy and not enough money to stretch.
Maybe it is a problem with time. Not enough time to fit in all you need to do …Christmas Eve with friends, Christmas Day with your family, Boxing Day with the in-laws etc. Maybe you have too much time on your hands! No work for 10 days, as many businesses close during that time. If you drink excessively for any of these reasons, change your thought process and be a little more grateful for all the things that are good in your life. Don’t be so selfish and judgemental of others.

Maybe Christmas is just a good excuse to be excessive (guilty). Too much beer, too much food, too many chocolates, too many late nights, too much time slouched in front of the TV watching greatest TV moments repeated again and again. Christmas is one of those times of the year that it is acceptable (if not expected) for people to drink more. The same reason people drink at 8 o’clock in the morning at the airport when they are going on holiday. Normally you wouldn’t even consider drinking in the morning unless you have a drink problem or unless you were on the way home from the night before (Medinas: wine and hot-pork bocadillo; highly recommended!)

Key indicators that you have had too much will include the fact that you can focus better with one eye closed or you start buying shots like its someone else’s money (my husband), or when you believe you are the best dancer in Almuñécar and dance to the sound of the fruit machine to prove it!

Dr. Nutt’s research that gave alcohol a most-dangerous, top score of 72 out of 100 also scored cocaine at 27, tobacco at 26 and cannabis at 20. The great news for vegetarians is that magic mushrooms only scored 5. That could make an interesting addition to the Christmas menu this year…with Auntie Ethel tripping to the sound of Jingle Bells!

Whatever the motivation, remember to drink responsibly and be careful not to spill any. Red wine is really difficult to get out of your party frock! Take care and Merry (no pun intended) Christmas.

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