Winebibber or Teetotaler?

I came across this photo while scanning family pictures for my mother. She’s planning to move to a smaller place in a retirement center. I agreed to scan or store some of her photo boxes and albums in order to help minimize her belongings.

I recall the circumstances surrounding this photograph. I was maybe 11 years old. My sisters and I were confined to the kitchen while my parents were entertaining in the dining room. We each were allowed a glass of wine. Unbeknownst to me, my sisters were adding more wine to my one allowed glass every time I put the glass down to attend to a pile of mounting dishes. I got a bit tipsy, or as the saying goes now, I was lit. I never finished the glass as I recall as my sisters finally let me in on the gag before I got fully intoxicated.

I have never been a winebibber, or one who drinks to excess. Not in my childhood, nor teen years, nor adult years. Nor have I gone long periods with being a teetotaler. I did abstain during a brief time of fervent fundamentalism, but that was just a phase. I think a major reason that I avoided the extremes is because of the healthy attitude toward drink that was displayed by my parents. They didn’t drink to excess. Mostly, a drink or two was enjoyed at social occasions. It wasn’t a daily habit.

That’s my attitude towards alcohol today. I rarely drink, partaking maybe once or twice a month. I have had the same four pack of single-serve wines in the refrigerator for a couple of months. The same goes for the Abita Springs Strawberry Ale sitting next to the carton of milk. I haven’t felt the need to assuage any feelings of stress during the pandemic with copious or even moderate levels of alcohol. It’s just not part of my psyche, I guess.

I can look back with a grateful heart that I had parents who were rational in their attitude towards drink. We were permitted to drink at celebrations as youngsters. No one overindulged. It was often just a celebratory drink now and then in our house.

The time pictured in the above image is one of the few times in my life when I have been guilty of overindulgence. Of course, it wasn’t my fault. I was being challenged to finish off a glass of wine that I didn’t know was, essentially, bottomless. Only when the gag reached a point where it could have been excessive was the gag revealed. I hope to stay the course the rest of my life as neither a winebibber or a teetotaler.

6 thoughts on “Winebibber or Teetotaler?

  1. Your parents gave alcohol to their very underage children? That is not responsible in the slightest, and likely illegal, but you seem to have come through it okay. Still surprises me.

    I quit drinking entirely in 1996. Before that, I drank booze every day. It is said that a glass of red wine daily is actually healthy.

    Bottoms up!

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    1. Yes my parents let us drink. I think we were better for it, developing healthy attitudes toward alcohol. It wasn’t “just for adults” but something we partook of as a family. I am happy that you are abstaining. Being sober seems to be best for you. Personally, I believe all people are addicts, some to alcohol, some to drugs, some to performance, some to people-pleasing, etc. I happen to be fighting a battle to lose weight. I have an unhealthy relationship to food, especially starchy food and sweets. I am doing my best to get my weight under control. Addiction of any kind is not an easy thing.

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  2. When we where young my dad would let us have a swig of his beer we thought we where living the high life. I went thru a faze when i was younger I thought I was 10 feet tall and bulletproof and I wasn’t, that finally wore off and I’m the better for it.
    I’m still working on my weight loss also, its going slow but sure. Think positive no negativity.

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    1. Losing weight isn’t easy. But I spent a decade or so slowly putting on a lot of weight. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that it’s not gone in a month or so of dieting. But I am making progress.

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