How I Survived Dry January

William Toblerone, Contributor


Back in December, I quit drinking altogether. By day three, my lips were cracked, my skin shriveled, and my senses began to deteriorate. On the fourth day, when I started to hallucinate that I was physically unattractive, I knew something was horribly wrong. The emergency room doctor explained to me that it is unwise to give up all liquids, and he suggested maybe just quitting alcoholic beverages. That sounded strange to me, so I asked people at my church if they had ever heard of this. Sure enough, several people there told me that, not only did they not have any alcohol on them, but they didn’t drink alcohol at all! I was skeptical, so I waved my flask at them. They didn’t even try to grab it from me! WTF?


On the first morning of the new year, I decided to give no shots a shot. Then the reality of life really started to hit me. My niece’s piano recitals weren’t hilarious anymore. All the poetry I had written about cat food seemed like a tragic waste of time. Driveway naps felt uncomfortable. The preacher came across as preachy.  


Now, for most of the people I know, Dry January is really Shitload of Other Drugs January. But I decided to face it head on, sober as a tap dancing wasp. But just because you’re clean doesn’t mean you can’t alter your mind a little. So I decided to search for a suitable natural high to curb the withdrawals.


The first thing I tried was extreme sadomasochism, provided by Mistress Whiplash in McKinleyville, CA. That shit hurt. I tried to get her to stop, but she kept asking me for the safe word. I can’t remember anything when I’m sober. So the whip kept a-crackin’ and the electrodes kept a-poppin’. Finally, I just shimmied out of the restraints and threw her out of a window. She complained about that for a long time, which made me very anxious and wanting a drink more than ever.


Not ready to quit, I attempted to lighten my brainthinker by engaging in some rooftop meditation. After an hour, I found my mind clear as Sprite and I felt like I had found the key to enlightenment. But then the chimney sweep showed up and started jabbing me with his stupid spikey broom thingy. Ouch! Fuck! Stop! He kept demanding a safe word, but I didn’t know what he was talking about! Had we met before? Was he the same chimney sweep I had met during that lost drunken weekend on my roof? It was hard to know.


To protect my physically attractive face, I folded myself into a protective ball, then rolled off the roof (like a ball). Ouch! Fuck! When I woke up from my coma, the sweet smell of February filled the air and Dry January was over. The doctor brought me champagne to celebrate.

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