Two old soaks (via Flickr)
Before we begin, here's a quick work from our fastidious in-house medical team here at THUMP:
While getting pissed can be really, really fun, in the right circumstances, at the right time, with the right people, we must stress that knowing one's limits is incredibly important, and that moderation is an absolute necessity when it comes to imbibing alcoholic drinks. We suggest trying the following test next time you're out on the lash: after four drinks, take yourself to the bathroom, and see if you involuntarily start talking out loud about how "you're totally...fine, totally fine." If you do happen to be talking out loud to yourself in a pub toilet while sighing quite a lot and splashing piss all over your Dickies, we suggest that you make a hasty retreat from the establishment and seek solace in a few glasses of tepid tap-water and a restorative bowl of Frosties. We promise that you'll feel like a million bucks when you rise bleary-eyed and dry-mouthed the morning after.
Now, those are undeniably wise words from the bloke who looks after the first aid kit in our office and you'd do well to heed them when you next find yourself eyeing up a third Jägerbomb at the Pheasant and Gentrifier on a Tuesday evening. Prevention, so they say, is the best form of cure. If only someone had told that to the bloke below:
What you're seeing there, if you can believe you're even seeing it in the first place, is the sorry sight of a young man so sozzled on moonshine, so hepped up on cheap spirit and mixer deals, so wildly off his nut on the fizziest of lagers and the sugariest of 4% alcopops that he's literally fallen asleep in a urinal trough. The bacchanalian overture that was his Big Night Out has ended in a dismal whimper, the stench of piss and urinal cakes coagulating in his nostrils, creating what must be some kind of olfactory nightmare you'd never truly wake from.
The image is truly tragic, in the truest sense of the word. His outfit suggests that he's been at some kind of event where the evening's fun stems from the shared sense of irony that comes from wearing naff shirts and deck shoes. What those kind of nights are ironising is never actually made clear, never fully explained. Perhaps it was a "beach party" or a "yacht party" or a "dinghy in the local watersports centre party." Perhaps it was none of these things. Perhaps it was just a regular night out and our befallen Dionysus just happens to enjoy dressing like a Kenny Loggins impersonator with a residency at a working men's club in Scunthorpe. Whatever his motives, whatever his intentions, this is how it ends: nose pressed against the cold metal of a tray, frothing a pool of warm piss into bubbles with every exhalation.
Stuffed in the uncomfortable bed of his own making, the passed-out-partygoer gives us pause to reflect on our own merry misdoings. Looking at it forces us to catalogue every misdemeanor that we memorially attribute to the corrosive effects of a pint or nine. Would you have puked in a kitchen drawer at that house party without drinking your own body-weight first? Probably not. What about the time you threw a remote controller at the telly during an episode of Top of the Pops 2 because you were so irritated by the sight of Steve Wright; would that have happened without the bottle of Glenn's you'd decanted into your wracked and ruined gullet just hours before? Or how about when you knowingly consumed some very, very underdone chicken and spewed all over your housemate's freshly-washed sheets, deciding there and then to blame anyone in the world but yourself? Do you often to that kind of thing? Hopefully not.
Does our sleeping baby make a habit of bedding down in a puddle of lurid piss? Who can say. How did he feel when he awoke to the prodding of a squad of bouncers all desperate to go home? Only he knows. Only he'll ever know. Why? Because most of us can honestly say, hand on heart, that we've never got so pissed we fell asleep in the urinal of a nightclub. Sockless. In a Hawaiian shirt.
So thank you, mate, whoever you are, wherever you are, for letting us tick another thing off the "thank fuck I didn't get caught doing that," list. We owe you a pint. And a shot. And another three shots. And another pint for measure.