Responsible, not-annoying intoxication

When drinking, columnist Sarah Sanders would rather her fellow partygoers keep their hands, beverages and bodily fluids to themselves.

When drinking, columnist Sarah Sanders would rather her fellow partygoers keep their hands, beverages and bodily fluids to themselves.

The first time I got drunk, I had just turned 16. After eight shots of Bacardi, I stumbled across town with my tipsy friends back to the house where my parents thought I’d be. My mom picked me up around midnight in our big tan van, and I was trying my best to stay composed. I wasn’t really sure how the alcohol should be affecting me, so I was afraid to talk too much.

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I didn’t want to give anything away. It’s not like my mom would give me a whoopin’ or anything for getting drunk when I was still a sophomore in high school – but you know you want to get the chance to do it again, so you have to play it cool.

That’s what I want to talk about: playing it cool. You see, a lot of you have no idea how to do this. You’ve been caught by your own parents, your friend’s parents, your roommate’s parents, your girlfriend’s grandparents, the police and even their parents. You are the bumbling, sloppy doofus I don’t really like to drink with. To be honest, there’s not a lot I can tolerate from any drunkie who’s not as happy and restrained as I am.

Intoxication can lead to a variety of different behaviors, only some of which I can handle. I can do talkative or giggly drunks, and a little stumbling or belligerence even makes me laugh. These antics make for safe fun – and great stories.

When I say intolerable, I mean more irresponsible behaviors. And I use the word irresponsible to describe a person who isn’t taking care of themselves to the point that it affects my good time. I don’t really care if you’re underage or even if you’re driving.

First rule: Stay out of my bed. I don’t want you falling asleep in my room because it was the first door at the top of the steps. If you have the spins and need to close your eyes, go outside where you’ll be out of my way. And definitely don’t try to sex anyone up in my bed. When I come home after an out-of-town weekend, I don’t want to find any unfamiliar stains on my sheets left by strangers. If I catch you, I’m not afraid to soak you in cold water.

Secondly, I have absolutely no patience for those who can’t keep their bodily fluids inside until they reach an appropriate outlet for them. Make sure anything that’s going to come out of you hits the toilet bowl. Or just wait until you leave before you pee your pants.

In high school, I knew this girl who always threw up on herself. For example, at the after-prom party, we were all relaxing in a friend’s living room, feeling our buzz. Then suddenly, this girl in the recliner jerks a little bit and spews down the front of her shirt. Come on. Your body tells you when it’s not feeling great. We know if we’re about to throw up in five minutes or five seconds. When you hit five minutes, I’d say hover around the bathroom for a while.

My best story of irresponsibility, however, concerns my significant other. We had just moved into a new house, and he went out for the evening. I wanted to stay and put some things away because at that point, everything was still in a box. And I can’t function like that.

So by 1 a.m., when he strolled in, I had unpacked everything. The house was organized and clean. I didn’t look at him as he started to climb the stairs, but then he stopped. I turned around on the couch to face the staircase, and he was doubled over.

I jumped up to usher him to the bathroom, but he already belched out some veggie-burger-and-fries bits swimming in stomach bile. So then I ran into the kitchen, got him a bowl and put it under the vomit fall. Back in the kitchen to get some soap and water, I hear his bike helmet fall down the stairs.

“Don’t drop that bowl,” I warned him.

“Already did,” he mumbled.

Sure we had wooden stairs, but there was a useless square of carpet in the middle of each step. I watched as the chunky stream soaked into the stupid little carpet squares and trickled down the steps.

Once I finally got him into the shower, I was able to clean most of it up. Then I found him asleep in the tub, the water spraying his face. I was fed up at this point. He couldn’t even get his underwear on after that. “Nuh uh,” I thought, I will not tolerate this. I left him to sleep on the bedroom floor.

Maybe we’ll never have the chance to drink together, so you won’t have to worry about my standards. Just know that even though they might not say it to your face, everyone else still thinks you’re an ass when you’re drunk.

Sarah Sanders can be reached at

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