Alcohol. Australia’s way of Life.

As we approach the “festive season” and in the wake of “schoolies week”. I thought it would be interesting to broach the subject of the acceptance of alcohol use (and abuse) and its intrinsic role in “Aussie culture”.

Open post. Feel free to comment.

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53 Responses

  1. Use is OK, abuse is not if the abuser changes their personality for the worse to commit acts of anti social behaviour.

  2. True. However some individuals can cause themselves physiological harm without knowing it – by say drinking six schooners in a session every day of the week. Thereby not passing as an alcoholic, but maybe a “heavy drinker.”

    It is this sort of behaviour that seems to be acceptable in Australian culture as well as celebrating almost any festive occasion by getting ‘trashed’.

  3. Shane, I’m not sure that alcohol abuse does not touch every family in some way…unfortunately my wife is showing these signs, she comes home after drinks at work a mess and gets nasty towards my daughter and myself to a point that we have grown to loathe Friday nights.

    What is worse is she drives home from the railway station in this condition and feels contrition over the rest of the weekend but does exactly the same the following week as a rule.

    Last Friday night was her work xmas party and she lost the gold Faberge watch with a filigree opal dial that cost me over a grand twenty years ago…if it was not for my quick thinking she would have not ever seen it again as I got onto the venue early the next morning before the cleaners got there and now it is back in her possession!

    I love a drink but never get nasty and don’t drink fast enough to get shitfaced and on the occasions that I do I’m happy and usually just go to sleep…that is the way I am.

  4. Scaper,

    I think that scenario is all too common.

    Last Saturday was our company’s Christmas party. I couln’t be effed going.

    On Monday I heard all the office girls laughing and talking about how shitfaced they all got. That being the measure of a good time apparantly.

    I haven’t had a drink since Friday. That’s the longest I’ve gone without a drink for say 20 years.

    It’s not easy, but my health – especially high blood pressure – is really beginning to feel the effects.

    Like your wife, I find it too easy to come home from work and pop the cork on a bottle of red to “relax”. Only thing is I’ve been doing it 6 or 7 nights a week.

    Anyway, one can only try…

  5. “Beer makes you feel the way you ought to feel without beer.”~Henry Lawson

  6. “I love a drink but never get nasty and don’t drink fast enough to get shitfaced and on the occasions that I do I’m happy and usually just go to sleep…that is the way I am.”scaper

    That describes my own inebriations pretty thoroughly; well, all but the not getting shitfaced part. To be honest I don’t get shitfaced very often, maybe 3 or 4 times a year; but I do get drunk with metronomic regularity if it is a (semi)appropriate time to do so.

    I hate nasty, angry & abusive drunks…it kinda defeats the purpose IMHO; if you need liquor to vent your spleen publicly & tell people what you really think then you’re usually just a coward in my experience.

    I think my f@cked up hours of work save me from becoming an overindulger. I have a couple most nights after dayshift, maybe 1 after afternoon shifts & never, ever before nightshift; so out of a month I might have a heavy(ish) fortnight but normally only every few days if I’m not working.
    I may be technically incorrect but I’ve always thought of an “alcoholic” as someone who cannot stop themselves, no matter what they’re doing tommorrow, 12 hrs later or even in the next hr or so.

    Having tried to sound a little sensible above I’ve gotta declare what I’m doing right now…getting sozzled. Work Xmas show was last Fri night & I wrote myself off for 2 days with a sickening hangover…but it WAS undeniably Great Fun!!! Worst episode of drunkeness I’ve participated in for a year at least.

    Good luck with that reb, seems sensible & I guess we know ourselves as individuals better than anyone can know us. It is a sign of intelligence (& self preservation) to know when it’s time for a break.

  7. Tony@5

    Great line.

  8. another “great” line:

    “Alcohol is both at once the cause, and solution to most of life’s problems.”

  9. And thanks Toilet Maestro…

    I’ve never considered myself to be a ‘problem drinker”. I just enjoy wine. It’s nice, it’s relaxing. It helps me get to sleep.

    I’ve never been an angry or abusive drunk. Usually I’ll have a bottle of wine preparing and consuming dinner, and that’ll be about it.

    I guess it’s just time to try a different approach. Especially now that the writing’s on the wall as far as my health is concerned.

  10. reb@8

    Another great line!

    If, like me, you don’t have a God, then your health is the apex of your existence…enjoy it whilst it lasts; getting old doesn’t look like much fun to me.

  11. “getting old doesn’t look like much fun to me.”

    I’m not so sure. Look at Joan Rivers, she uses her age as an excuse to basically tell everyone to ‘get f**ked!”

    And I’ll never forget George Burn’s response when asked what his secret to longevity was – he was about ninety at the time.

    He simply replied “don’t die!”

  12. “I’m not so sure. Look at Joan Rivers”reb

    ….but, conversely look at Cadaver Ruddock!…

    …the undead will feast…

    Uh-oh, I’ve started dismembering sentences, too much of a good thing?

  13. I love the Joan Rivers line:

    “I’ve had so many facelifts I now have a goatee”

    hehe

  14. “You are damned if you do and damned if you don’t!”

    Bart Simpson

  15. “You can’t be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline. It helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer. “~Frank Zappa

  16. Life is too short in so many ways to learn from one’s mistakes, better to learn from other’s mistakes.

  17. Eat drink and be merry, for tomorrow we may die! (Give me proof that, that is untrue and I will change my ways, TB)

    …and I believe in GOG – (TB)! – Grow Old Gracefully!

  18. Ooops! GOU!

    I always get it wrong – something to do with my memory and alcohol destroying my brain cells – I think?

  19. I’ve always loved ‘Aussie’s’ !

    Now, read & remember…………(please),
    My late husband & I drank for 30 yrs socially, with friends, family, workmates the most & neighbours. Never drunk nor this weird bingeing (?). Excellent careers, healthy & sports active. We were hit suddenly in our mid to late 40’s from it, with permanent & severe, Grand-Mal Seizures, nearly destroying everything.
    There are many with this & other afflictions, llike near complete blindness, deafness, rotted livers on waiting for transplant lists, and good old heart attacks. None with any cure’s & many never speak of it to anyone.
    It is the scourge of society !
    We’ve got to warn our youth, otherwise, when all us old farts are in nursing homes, being spoon fed & diaperred, who’s going to take over the many working jobs we’ve all handled ?

    May our dear Lord in heaven, help us all !!

  20. We live in arguably the best time in history so far, in a very wealthy country (some would say the best of the best) and from what I can tell, most here are not struggling at the lowest end of Oz society.

    We are probably in the top 1percentile of combined human history

    Find your pleasure where you can and enjoy it! – it will be over very soon (then the next gen get the best time in history tag)

  21. Oh yeah,- as for cool quotes

    your existence – the universe is divinely indifferent

  22. Scaper, take my advice and respect your wife’s privacy. Blogs are not the best places, or even good places, to discuss these personal issues.

    If you believe that your wife has a ‘problem’ then there is a whole range of professional services available. Use them! You claim to have plenty of money, so spend some on professional assistance.

    Personally, I would be aghast if my ‘other half’ of a thousand years was discussing my/our circumstances on the tubes.

    And if she does seek professional advice, be prepared for the real, but unpleasant, possibility that the problem might be traced to thou.

    It usually takes two to tango.

    Just sayin …

  23. Nature 5

    Perhaps he was sending his daughter a message of understanding and despair( that couldn’t be done another way)

    After all, she regularly reads this blog, amongst others

  24. another girl – another planet

    “Perhaps he was sending …. ”

    Maybe. But the possibilities are endless. Personally, I am decidedly uncomfortable discussing personal circumstances on a blog. FGS, whether we like it or not, this info becomes a permanent electronic record accessible for years to come by anyone who has a yearn to search. Not clever, particularly when he posted his personal Email address a day or two ago.

    To put it simply, give the child and the wife a break.

    But then again, I am already guilty of saying too much.

    And yes; No further correspondence will be entered into regarding this matter. (reb, if you want to ‘censo’r comments then you have my approval and endorsement). Your choice! Think of the child!

  25. Well Nature 5 and AGAP, I really don’t see any problem with workshopping our personal lives in detail on this blog.

    During my discussion last week with my wife’s psychiatrist, I relayed a conversation I had with the surgeon who is to perform my penis enlargement operation, well he thinks my wife would be HOT if she had bigger breasts. Not that they’re particularly small, no.

    Anyway, so guess what she is getting for Christmas?? Yes!! Me with a larger penis.

    Well, I’d like to relay more, but I have to go and have sex with her. She’s had a few drinks…

    I’ll be back in 2 or 3 minutes.

  26. But the possibilities are endless

    Yes, this is what he forgets… what was said last week is still there for all to see this week, next month, next year etc

    I would be troubled if his daughter was to read any of this, even though he’s not. By his own account, it’s a given this will happen.
    Strangely, I’m not worried that this will actually occur 😀

    reb – as N5 says… delete these last few comments, the point has been made. Even if the risk is slight, some of us would prefer it not be taken

    Tom – I think your new penis is a lovely Chrissy present for your wife, what a thoughtful guy you are!. I think most girls would appreciate it if more men would make the effort!

  27. Tom of Melbourne

    I suspect that your comment(s) will go straight through to the keeper. But I love it.

    It seems that you are a historian of some repute..

    Yet caution is advised: “Me with a larger penis.”

    Some might say: “An even bigger dickhead” (But certainly not me.)

  28. Has always confused me that one… lets see, a dick and a head

    Where”s the problem?

  29. another girl – another planet

    “lets see, a dick and a head Where’’s the problem?

    Aha! A linguistic analyst. Or perhaps a cunning linguist? Good to see.

    There are some lines there but I am of an age where any response would be characterised as that of ‘a dirty old man’.

  30. (Tom)tripod of Melbourne
    Afterwards just watch your balance, its tricky.

    # I’ll be back in 2 or 3 minutes
    when drunk i would love the comfort of all that time.

  31. #30 – makes sense to me ! lol

    cheers! – just called the cab. c-u all tomorrow !

  32. 22. Nature 5

    I thought the same thing.

    Scaper, I would be murderous if any of my family posted private and personally embarrassing information about me or my behaviour on a blog. Of course if you have permission from your wife to do so, fair enough, otherwise If she sees this, you are in well deserved, enormous trouble!

    Not cool, no matter how angry you are. You just told everyone that your wife is a habitual, illegal drink driver.

    On the other thread you said you were long time happily married, that post of yours is not the action of a loving, considerate man. What is happening to you? Is your wife’s weekly escape and aggression her way of coping with marital problems and your self righteous recriminations?

    Tom the dickhead, sorry, Tom the huge dickhead – thanks for the laugh!

  33. How typical.

    I start a post about the serious consequences and insidious nature of alcohol in Australian society, and you lot rapidly degenerate into a discussion about getting pissed, shagging the missus, and then returning here “2 or 3 minutes later” to brag about it..!!

    I mean, for Christ’s sake.

    “2 or 3 minutes?” Is that the best you can do Tom….?????

  34. Nature 5 @24.

    On “censoring comments”. Me and joni have kind of agreed that we will only censor comments if they are basically just personal insults and abusive. Fortunately I have only felt the need to do this once since the blog has been going. Which is pretty cool eh?

    By the way, if you sometimes get a message that “your post is awaiting moderation”. It is not because we are moderating comments, it’s just that the spam filter will sometimes pick up comments that have links in them, and hold them til me or joni “unspaminate them”. Which we try to do regularly.

    This will also happen to new contributors with their first post only.

    Now, would you mind all getting back on topic you pack of pissheads!

  35. But if anyone wants to retract a comment (seriously). Just let me know and I can delete it.

  36. Just like the back up reb’s comment. We do not want to be moderating comments, so can we call please keep on topic and not resort to getting personal.

    Let’s keep this a place where it is nice to drop in and chat.

    🙂

  37. reb @ 34

    Thats great news and I have always believed all opinions other than abusive ones deserve being posted. Thats it healthy debate. Unlike Bolt and Akerman who censor their sites more than the Chinese censor the internet.

  38. By the way when I have a couple too many I first become very affectionate so look out those around me and after a few too many more simply curl up and go to sleep.

  39. Well it was a torrid night, between 10.45 and 10.51. Yessiree, it’s great to be a MAN!!

    And I’m thinking of having my enlarged penis put on my penis, instead of my head!!

  40. Back to the topic at hand (and no Tom, I don’t mean your (enlarged) penis):

    This is one of my all time favorite websites.

    This link will taker you to some of the best ever quotes drinking:

    http://www.drunkard.com/md_youre_a_drunk.htm

  41. Bloody IE, it keeps premature posting on me. The above link isn’t the quotes it’s actually the link to the page of tell tale signs of when you’re a drunk.

    My personal fav: You know whehn you’re a drunk when you start referring to grapes as ‘wine eggs’.

    Here is the link to the quotes (which are by common folk like us):

    http://www.drunkard.com/md_wino_wisdom.htm

  42. Deity almight! IE just did it again – that’s it, I’m reverting back to Google Chrome (#@#@’n Microsoft sh!t ). Didn’t get to proof read B4 submitting – reading over my posts above makes me read like I’m drunk already (I’m not BTW but if IE keeps up like this it might drive me to it; probably cheaper than throwing the screen accross the room).

  43. LOL Dave are you sure you’re not drunk.

  44. Pissed (as in angry) but no, not Drunk – this time!

    The links (and the whole “Modern Drunkard Magazine” are well worth a look though.

  45. LOL@ comments from Tom & ABBA.

  46. OK, looks like I’m still catching up on all the new nicknames. Who is (or used to be) ABBA?

  47. The entity formerly known as ABBA is no more. I am just being naughty, noticing similarities in syntax & structure, & imagining the new incarnation (who is not gender ambiguous apparently).

    I was/am an ABBA/??????# fan.

  48. Toilet

    Im an ABBA fan always have been. Funny how they get put down by many yet everyone can sing and remember the words to their songs and dance to them.

    Feet tapping under the desk 🙂

  49. Ok. It looks like it’s been a bit of a running joke here for a while. Silly of me not to pick up on it. :S

  50. As a Canadian, it is our impression that Aussies drink and sport ceaselessly. With maybe short breaks to sleep….or pass out as it were.

    Not unlike us Canadians who merely migrate from one frozen pond to the next in search of another hockey game.

    Eh?

  51. Astute observation there Chaz.

    Although I would draw a distinction between “playing” sport versus “watching” it.

    The first priority for Australians is drinking, which generally precludes “playing” sport.

    So the obsession with sport is generally limited to being a spectator while consuming copious quantities of alcohol.

  52. Shane @ 48, I was an ABBA fan too. and I preferred him when she was a woman.

  53. Playing sport was my intended reference but you would know better than I.

    Aussies I have known avidly play more than watch… then again, ones I have known were wayward enough to emigrate. I know not of the stay-at-homes.

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