It was one of those evenings where the weather was bland, much like the food from a certain tribe I dare not name. It lacked imagination, it didn’t have the calmness of a deep blue ocean. The kind of calmness that makes you want to strip to your minimums exposing those skinny legs before taking a dive into the ocean disrupting the peace. It also didn’t have the fierceness of a tornado that would tear apart houses like a man would tear of the lingerie of a voluptuous woman right before he broke his dry spell. It was lack luster and boring. It didn’t have the pizazz, the clouds were stretched out to the horizon with no particular pattern and the wind was calm. It wasn’t hot, it wasn’t cold. It was just there like a complacent wife affirming to the whims of an adolescent husband.
Lying next to me was a six pack of Heineken. The cans were sweating, droplets formed on their brims and slowly trickled down. It was almost as if they were caressing the can readying it for a thorough drink. Reminded me of that cold sweat you break into before delving into something you’ve never done before – like walking into a gay bar. You don’t know if you’ll end up liking it, you don’t know what that would mean. From all the movies you’ve seen you’ve learnt that they are great dancers so maybe you’ll learn a move or two. You may end up getting one of them hit on you and you’ll be torn between feeling flattered or offended. But you’ll go with flattered because if none did that would be more offending. You can’t have ‘the struggle’ with the opposite sex and the same sex as well. I stretched my hand to grab one and threw it across to my friend. Grabbing it he admired the sweat, probably the same thought went through his mind. He stared at the beer intently. Normally you don’t think that much before opening a beer unless you just had one handed to you by your ex-girlfriend and it didn’t do the pshh sound. You have every right to question that beer, it might be laced with some truth serum. I don’t think she’d be particularly happy to find out you dated her to make her friend jealous. She definitely wouldn’t be appeased to find out it worked and that you and her friend had a much more fiery relationship which you might add is still blazing.
He fumbles with his beer before opening it. He takes a pensive sip – this is that sip you take before letting out a deep sigh, putting the can down and asking a question. It cannot be a stupid question, something like; do you iron your underwear. No, it has to be profound. I keenly watched as he took his sip. He put the beer down and looked me straight in the eye before asking:
“Does drinking make your writing better?”
I almost gagged on my mouthful of brew. But any seasoned beer lover know you don’t spit it out, even for dramatic effect. But what movie have you watched where the antagonist walks in and declares they have some dirt on the protagonist and the protagonists spits beer? Any? No! They always spit water or pour a glass of wine (see my distaste?) So I swallowed, slow. I wasn’t going to forget the benefit of having to savor the first sip of beer over a profound question. Why should I waste mine when he clearly enjoyed his? So I had my slow swallow and sighed deeply before putting down the can. He was still staring intently at me trying to read my facial expressions. I’m a blank page if you know me, you can barely tell what I’m thinking. During serious talks I let out short bursts of laughter just to keep people guessing. After a few seconds of pointless staring I cleared my throat. I don’t have a rasp like with seasoned smokers that have been sucking on cigarettes since they were weaned of their mother’s milk. Mine is much like a guy walking in on the best friend watching porn with his girlfriend’s friend type of ahem.
“I don’t know. Has being drunk made anything better?” I shot back sarcastically.
“Certainly not driving” he replied in between chuckles.
The conversation died out as it paved way to politics (read girls) and girls. But later on I thought about it. Has alcohol really made anything better? Do the hazy, steamy and clumsy moments of coitus after a bottle of whiskey count? Those moments you can’t seem to remember much like how over a series of conversations a girl is convinced you said you loved her. You try to recall the said moment without any luck. You’re torn between confronting her and looking like a jerk or accepting it and falling into a trap. You pick the latter because she is sweet and end up in a toxic relationship where she tries to control your every move. You hit the bottle harder only because you can’t hit her and end up knocking her up. Now you’re forever trapped. The family wants you to marry her, you oblige and have two more kids. She’s happy in a weird ‘I have a husband who doesn’t want to be my husband but has kids with me so he has no choice’ kind of way. But you convinced yourself the sex was great and that’s one thing alcohol did make better – whiskey to be exact.
What else does it make better? Conversation? Yes, I think conversation. Because never in the history of has a guy ever taken a sip of water and blurted out “damn I’m high”. That’s a conversation opener and it can lead to a whole plethora of discussable topics not limited to women. What about the fact that you can walk into a bar, alone, like a serial killer and emerge the most popular fella people ever knew since Diego Maradona was a size 10?
I don’t know much about writing though. If it’s anything to go by, I did this piece with a beer (two) in hand. So tell me what you think.