Saturday Morning Thoughts: Drunk Dialing

If the CIA and FBI had most wanted lists for serial drunk dialers circa spring 2008 through late 2009, I would be on the top of the worldwide list. It was a bad, bad habit. I even asked Apple why they didn’t have a feature that prevented users from drunk dialing in a Daily Free Press column. I guess at that point I knew I had a problem – and didn’t care too much to fix it.

These days I look back on my drunk dialing and I bang my head into the wall a couple times. I’d say about 95% of the calls were harmless. I’d call an old friend from home, say a few words, listen to his or her inaudible response, and hang up happier for having heard a familiar voice. But the other 5%… well, to be completely honest I can’t remember about 85% of the other 5%, and the other 15% (of the 5%) I have chosen to block from my memory.

Drunk dialing isn't pretty. Ask anyone from Parks and Rec.

Drunk dialing isn’t pretty. Ask anyone from Parks and Rec.

One of my strategies for getting rid of the awful taste that the hazy memory of a bad drunk dial or text was deleting any history of it on the phone. I’d have to guess that most recipients of bad dials did the same.

Perhaps there’s a drunk dial and text hell. Whereas all the funny, charming drunk messages and talks go to heaven and sing with a choir of tipsy angels, the bad drunk dials burn in the eternal inferno with angry and sad messages lamenting lost loves.

The drunk dial hell most likely resembles a dive bar in the forgotten part of whatever city you live in. Toward the front of the dive sit the embarrassing, incoherent, and unflattering texts and voicemails you left lost loves. They cry together as they take back Fireball shots, constantly re-upping the music machine so that it plays Adele’s “Someone Like You.”

In the middle of the bar, you’ve got those weird drunk dials you’ve made to your parents. The ones that essentially say, “I’m not ready to be an adult. How do you do it?” And almost always certainly end with, “No, don’t worry though. I’m okay. Miss you.” By the way, that means you aren’t okay about 175% of the time. But it’s okay to be not okay. Those drunk dials play some old-fashioned drinking games and mumble to one another, never listening to what the other has to say.

No no. You are not okay. But that's okay.

No no. You are not okay. But that’s okay.

At the very back of the bar – outside, puking in the alley – are the angry, mean drunk dials and texts that you’ve made or sent. It’s not pretty back there. Just a bunch of wasted dudes and ladies barfing their brains out. They deserve the agony though. They’re kind of assholes. And frankly, they aren’t a very good representation of who you are as a person. They’re an aberration. But they still exist.

I don’t want to get to deep this morning, but maybe it’d be healthier if we dealt with the hammered text or call puking in the back before he gets to the bar. Talk to him about what he’s upset about. Make him hash it out and say things that he would normally feel uncomfortable talking about.

Tell him that you don’t want to see him end up in drunk text and call hell. Remember a lot of us go through periods of not being okay. The sad thing is that most of the time a bad drunk dial won’t change how you feel. It might just make it worse.

After all, it’s way more fun to be in drunk dial heaven. Those voicemails get played over, and over again. Personally, I’d rather be laughing my ass off than puking in an alley.

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