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The Reason Why I Drink: Monday | An I-Land Special

The Reason Why I Drink: A Confession In Seven Parts by Xavier Wayson, One For Every Day Of The Week (Spring 2015 edition)


Monday . . .

Why do writers drink?

I don’t know, but I can tell you why I drink. I drink in order to pass the time when not writing. I don’t drink when I write, I don’t have to, don’t want to. When putting words on screen I feel strong and composed. All I need are my teetotaling skivvies, a keyboard, a chair, and time.

The rest of the time I drink. I drink because life is full of interesting things to do but undignified ways in which to achieve them, forcing incurable idealists like me to adulterate their inner sanctums in order to be part of so-called society. To put water in my wine and thin out my spirits in the name of this is the way we do it. Go on, get in line. Do as others do and don’t think twice about breaking the mold. Get assimilated. Get married. Have kids. Have them after you’re married. Be proper at all times, and behave, damn it! Drink only after the sun goes down, and seldom, if at all. Don’t binge and purge. Don’t live in excess. Don’t exaggerate. Don’t do drugs, they’re bad for you. Just buy what the doctors ordered, legal, sanctified, and taxable. And kids, be a role model for them. Be a role model across the board. Whatever you do echoes in the digital world. You have a responsibility in everything you do. Show people the way forward. Be a family man, a rotary club member, an alumni, a networker. Correspond with your peers and vote with diligence for the good of your country, because your nation is who you are. You are the nation. You have a responsibility to act in ways prescribed by those invested in it. Be part of the community, partake in people’s activities, attend garage sales, raffles, share your free time with everyone, make an enterprise out of it and a good man is what you will become. Find a way to reconcile business and honesty, individuality and submission to the system, because life is a paradox, and be prepared to face the consequences if you fail.

Fuck you! That’s my answer. This is the oldest trick in the book. I see your bollocks and raise them with a big stiff finger, all yours to behold, followed by a stiff drink down the hatch and a kick up the backside. You think you have the lowdown on morality, every corner covered, but the truth is you’re a big fat convenient lie rolled in a bundle and served to all those unfortunate enough to listen. You claim to make them feel warm and comfortable in their scripted and prescribed lives, when all you do is deceive and commandeer, dive-bombing free will. This fairytale you weave about how-to-this and when-to-that, because this is the way everyone does it, the way things need to be, remember that shit? Stick it up your fume pipe, plug yourself dead. I’m not buying it.

I drink, my friends, a lot, and for good reason. My name is Xavier Wayson, a man of many capacities, and I drink to unregister the stench of the ever-present bullshit people throw around like tinsel at New Year’s Eve to validate each other’s journeys and life choices. An artificial rite of passage is what it is, crass and meaningless, and everyone laps it up daily, in loud yesses and long yums, like the good children they are. I can’t stand the charade. The stench. The effluvium.

Effluvium. Such a pleasant term, isn’t it? Straight from living hell. A substitute for ‘proper’ life, and by that I mean life as (re)presented by its eager, everyday champions, rotting in the moisture of its sanctimoniousness.

Look around you. Effluvium everywhere; a world full of discharge for a life drenched in seepage, as in things that seep and effluviate out of something thick with its sour stench and its fatty scum and totally full of its self-righteous self. Wherever you turn, presto, there they are, the regents of society, preaching their way into the future, the way unto a good life, judging, tut-tutting, patting backs when people submit to their call, turning up noses when someone strays from the path, unaware that the only noses needing an upturn are those that register the motherfucking reek in the first place. The ones escaping it, not the ones diving into it.

Exaggerating? Go on, get out the door, walk the streets, turn on the TV, go online, go anywhere, and there it is: a thick, swampy sea of propriety and tut-tut. If you don’t see it, you’re part of the problem. Throwing crap around and calling it morals. The guard of the pretentious, hijacking time, laying sole claim to it. The affliction of the self-righteous and conformist taking over, through which you fabricate a world out of dribble and bull. Can’t be avoided, can’t be denied, wherever you go, whatever one does or says, effluvium everywhere, assaulting eyes and nose, mind and soul.

Unless you drink.

So I drink. Down the hatch the spirits go, making the stench go away. Pushing it into the background with every sip, away it fades, in the beautiful way nasty accumulations disappear when the spirits get hold of them. Dissolved like a ball of snotty uptightness in history’s bloody pool, they become an echo, a memory, then something to laugh at. Life looks good again, fresh, untainted.

Untainted life.

Well worth a liver.

Watch this space for Tuesday . . .

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