New Year’s Eve, the night before New Year’s Day

Yesterday was New Year’s Eve, commemorating the end of one year and the start of another (hence name). Like all celebrations, this holiday is marked with  garish decorations, large parties, and mass quantities of alcohol. No one is more ready to celebrate and raise a glass than your’s truly, however, the excessiveness to this holiday borders on ridiculous and, let’s face it, it’s cliche.

I spent New Year’s Eve sober at a lovely party at my aunt’s in Vienna, VA. Did people drink? Naturally. Did people lose all sense? No.  The reality of the chaos of New Year’s didn’t really hit me until the drive home to the city my uncle so graciously gave me. After speaking with my roommate about her metro trip back to our apartment, I was even more ecstatic and grateful for his generosity to drive me 35 minutes out.

The highway was strewn with the dormant blue and red lights of cops waiting to ticket speeding hooligans and arrest drunk drivers. Upon entering the heart of DC, the streets were decked with scantily clad girls carrying their stilettos and stumbling, inebriated men carrying girls. The more impaired groups negotiated with taxis for rides (unsuccessfully), ignored all forms of traffic laws (getting hit by a car is less painful when drunk anyway), and located the nearest sewer drain or space of sidewalk to vomit. Classy evening.

I feel I sound very hipster/pretentious–I’m too cool to get drunk on New Year’s. I won’t lie, I have been very “out of sorts” on New Year’s, and I’ve been in some precarious situations from overindulgence–everyone has. But with age and maturity, these events are to occur less often. New Year’s seems to be an excuse for reenactment of these mistakes for ages 21 – 99.

My perception on this holiday is that I don’t need an excuse to get drunk and be pressured to have a good time. I could do this on a Monday for cheaper and  accompanied by less annoying people.

Aside from my attitude problem, the other issue is cost. My roommate went to one of those DC shindigs where you pay a set amount of money and get unlimited drink and food. Downsides:

  • $140
  • $140 from 10pm – 2am (roughly $50 an hour)
  • $140 and they stop serving alcohol at 1:30am
  • $140 and apparently there is an 8 drink minimum
  • $140 and the food isn’t good
  • $140 and there is no guarantee of fun

My roommate  informed me that in taking the public transportation back from her event, as we know the DC metro is reliable, she encountered delays and numerous drunk people coloring the floors with vomit. Thank you so much, Uncle Rob, for not having me take the metro back to DC!

Conclusion: All in all, I don’t need an excuse to act like an idiot, that will happen on its own, and I don’t really want to end the old year in a cloud and start the new one with a headache and lost wallet. In saying that, New Year’s can be fun, with or without alcohol. What it comes down to is, regardless of your state of mind, that you are with people you like and care about who help you conclude a year of your life and begin another one. And if you are lucky, you get to kiss a special person you really like, and that’s starting off a year pretty decently, with or without a hangover.

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