By contributing writer Lee Camp
Mother nature always seems to come out on top. She consistently finds a way to make everything balance out, and a perfect example is The Hangover. Why can’t we get trashed at night, and then feel great the next morning? Why couldn’t the morning-after consequences of alcohol be something other than sickness, dizziness, and an inability to remember the night before? For example, why couldn’t they be strength, enthusiasm, great hair, and an ability to see the future? Could you imagine that?
Guy #1: We’re gonna have to get the landlord in here to move this broken refrigerator out.
Guy #2: I can lift it. No problem.
Guy #1: Holy crap! That’s like 350 pounds! How’d you do that??
Guy #2: I got completely trashed last night. A good hangover every once in awhile will do wonders for you. By the way, tomorrow night don’t leave that party early because about ten minutes after you leave, a gorgeous girl will walk in who wants to jump you.
Guy #1: Really? Wow, I didn’t know you could tell the future! And your hair looks good too.
Guy #2: Thanks. It’s a good thing I got sloshed last night.
But that doesn’t happen, does it? Momma Nature isn’t that stupid. The hangover is the one thing that makes us think twice about really whacking our brains out because we all know the simple math equation that follows:
Really good times + lots of alcohol = really bad times + lots of regret.
I didn’t have to take advanced calculus to figure that one out. Though I did take advanced calculus and was surprised to learn they teach it there too.
And of course, I personally believe that the worst hangovers are the ones when you have something important to do in the morning. My worst hangover experience was one day when my parents were coming to visit early that morning. It doesn’t matter how cool your parents are, you don’t usually want them to see you hunched over a bathtub with your hair messed up and no pants on. You don’t generally overhear dads bragging about that. “Man, am I proud of my son! Look at him bowing down to the toilet in perfect form! We taught him well.”
So when my parents arrived at my apartment, I took several steps to avoid looking hungover. I put the eye drops in, wore a baseball cap down low, drank a lot of water, brushed my teeth for three straight hours. And I thought I was doing a pretty good job until my parents decided to take me out to a Waffle House for breakfast. A loaded plate of buttery, syrup-filled waffles is about the last thing you want to see five hours after collapsing in a heap on your bed with no feeling in your tongue and the room spinning violently around you.
I got hungover despite trying every anti-hangover trick in the book. (It’s a short book because nobody feels like reading when they’re wrecked.) Every friend of yours seems to have a different fool-proof way to avoid hangovers. Some people say take vitamin C before you go to bed. Some people say drink lots of water. Some people say to eat lots of fiber and make out with a leprechaun just before he sits down for lunch. Everybody has a different technique. I’ve even had friends tell me to drink a beer in the morning. I swear there is honestly always somebody saying, “Man, I know it sounds ridiculous. I know it sounds irrationable, but it weally rorks. When you wake up tomorrow's morning, chug a beer, and you won’t eee hungover atall.” That person is probably right—you won’t be hungover because you’ll be drunk! If you wake up from a night of drinking and then start drinking, there’s no time for a hangover. Avoiding a hangover by getting drunker probably isn’t a tip you’ll find in Healthy Living. Then again, what does Healthy Living know about getting a head start on the next night, right?
I used to do the rhyming thing that everyone learns in college. It goes, “Beer before liquor, never been sicker. Liquor before beer, you’re in the clear.” Apparently we thought that as long as it rhymed, we were gonna be alright. However, after seven long years of extensive, painstaking research on the matter, I’ve learned it’s not true. One time I tried “Tequila plus a Cinnabon equals tons of fun,” but it didn’t work at all! Tequila plus a Cinnabon instead equals Cinnabon all over the back of your friend’s car. I did the math myself. However, I did find one rhyme that is accurate: “Tequila plus Taco Bell, you’re goin’ to hell.” I also eventually learned that it’s going to be a bad party when things stop rhyming. For example, the party’s going downhill fast when you hear a friend yell, “Beer before liquor, never been…so messed up duuuuude!!” A sage maxim such as usually followed by the potted plant getting watered with something other than water.
But I have to wonder, why haven’t scientists gotten to work on this problem yet? I want to see that one day on CNN. “There's been a significant breakthrough at UC-Berkeley today. Researchers there have discovered that beer before liquor does not actually make you sicker, but instead gets you trashed quicker. Supplemental findings show that in order to avoid a hangover, drinkers should consume two glasses of orange juice in the morning, followed by a game of speed chess with a three-legged St. Bernard. In their final finding, Berkeley researchers have revealed that contrary to popular belief, people who can’t dance when they’re sober, still can’t dance when they’re drunk. Researchers say they’re excited by the results and have plans to find a way to reduce the ‘dude’ quotient in test patients high on marijuana. That’s all for now from CNN Headline News.”
I hope I’ve shed some light on the mystery of the hangover. And at this point I can’t help but boast about the resolute journalistic investigative efforts I put forth in order to complete this article. I hope you appreciate just how much “research” I did indeed execute for the sake of this article. That being said, I hear the toilet calling me for another round of spirited hugging. Here's to you, Dad.