Yes, yes I know New Year’s Eve is the champagne holiday of the year, but I promise you, it doesn’t have to be as scary as you think.
With a few simple sober life hacks, you will glide through the midnight hour; glass slippers intact.
The first step in taking away the power something has over me, is to first understand it. So before I try to start solving the problem, I’d like to know where the whole thing originated. Why do we celebrate New Year’s with champagne?
In all actuality, the discovery of champagne was an accident and possibly a stroke of genius in the then non-existent marketing world. You see, yeast is activated by heat, and the wine then carried in barrels and fermented with yeast, would go through constant rates of change.
By laying dormant in the cold and then by agitating in the heat, the yeast began to release carbon inside the barrels of wine. Instead of throwing out the now ‘ruined’ wine, the Frenchman who mulled the wine spiked the price, changed the name to champagne, and before long, royalty across Europe was inquiring about the sparkling wine.
So why do we celebrate with it now?
Well, as far back as the 16th century, champagne was considered the drink of the “royal elite” as it wasa lot harder to come by, and therefore a lot more expensive. It soon became the ‘antithesis of wine’ and holidays were divided secularly; using wine for the religious rituals, and champagne for the less religious celebrations. New Year’s Eve fell into the latter of the two categories, and to this day, bottles pop and bubbly flows as we countdown the final moments of the year.
It is said, we use it today as much for the symbolism of abundance, ‘your cup runneth over’ if you will.
Great, so now we have all this knowledge about champagne and we aren’t even drinking, so what now? Good question.
This is where you form a game plan.
We know why everyone drinks it, we know the meaning and the history, and we know that we are trying to avoid it as we approach the annual tradition. Here are some ways you might try to combat what you know about the holiday, with where you want to be when the holiday is over; i.e. sober.
Bring Backup – I’m talking in the form of your own drinks, and since this holiday is about bubbling over, it won’t be hard to find some sparkling water or soda to help you in this.
If you plan on getting too messy, make sure you are shaking up the sugar-free stuff or it will get messy in a hurry. (FYI if you are at a bar, you are already at a disadvantage and I have no further advice until you extract yourself from that situation. If you are trying to stay sober this is the very last place you should be celebrating anything.)
Keep Your Glass Full – save the questions of, ‘what are you having, I’ll grab you one,’ because that will launch a series of other questions about your drinking, why you quit, why you can’t just have one, etc. Make sure to keep your own glass full and if you are worried about sugar intake, again, go for low sugar, sugar-free, or just live a little for a night.
Find A New Crowd – Don’t fall into the same old thing you do every year only this time you will be the only one not drinking. I’m telling you from experience it will mess with your head whether you even want to drink or not. Before long you will be around a bunch of drunk people wondering why the heck you are even there. Find a group of friends that have planned activies, and who aren’t drinking that much if at all.
We are all adults now, and I’m guessing more of your friends work on January 1st than not, so check on some of your nurse friends, some of your mom friends, friends that have responsibilities that will prevent them, as well as you, from being out all night around booze.
The best part is, you don’t have to do anything you don’t want to, so if you just want to have a small pajama party at home you can do it up!
This NYE doesn’t have to be intimidating if you form a game plan and stick to it.
No bubbly -no problem, because you are informed, have a plan, and came with back-up!