Rules for Drinking (all day and all night)

Now, there inevitably comes a time in one’s life when one finds it necessary to drink all night and all day.  (For me, that pretty much means every family get-together.)  If one finds oneself in this situation there are some very simple rules to follow to navigate through the experience enjoyably and not find oneself passed out on the couch flashing a beaver to whomever might happen to walk by (which, invariably happens to my sister because she doesn’t follow one of the most important rules—I will elucidate later.)

Let me take you though a day, shall I?


Drinks in the morning vary according to the season and occasion so we’ll have to break this one down a bit:

CHRISTMAS:  Christmas, of course, is mimosas.  Our typical Christmas morning starts bright and early (and I mean early, early when our kids were young.  6ish?  Now that they’re teenagers we’re lucky to get them out of bed by the crack of noon) with cappuccini all around, which segues into drip coffee and then when we are all assembled:  mimosas.  These are enjoyed with our traditional breakfast strada and Grandma’s caramel- pecan rolls.  The mimosas get us through the arduous present opening hours and last roughly until the champagne runs out, which is usually around 4 hours later.  Now, at this time, there is absolutely no shame in taking a mid-morning nap.  (Or in my husband’s and my case, our traditional Xmas Boink—followed by a nap.)

EASTER:  Beer.  Not sure why but I seem to have numerous pictures in my mind of the adults watching the kiddies scramble around looking for eggs that are literally right at eye level and all of us seem to be clutching a beer.  Perhaps it’s the warm weather.

JULY 4:  Beer.

ANY OTHER MORNING:  Beer.  Since we’re usually, shall we say, a little the worse for wear when we’re together, a breakfast beer is always welcome.  Your typical breakfast beer is on the light side.  Say, your Coronas or your Lucky Lagers or your Canned Budweiser (not for me, thank you, I do have some standards and I draw the line at canned Budweiser.  My father was quite fond of Budweiser as a breakfast beer as I recall; especially while traveling.  But, I digress…)  We’re not really the hard alcohol/Raymos Fizz/Bloody Mary drinkers unless, of course , we’re on vacation and happen to be at a bar/restaurant and are in DESPERATE need of one.  I myself am not a fan of the Bloody Mary as it tends to bring up the previous night’s indulgences rather than quell them.  I must give a shout-out to Kristofer Brekke; however, who makes the best Raymos Fizzes.  If you happen to be at the Brekkes on a (too) bright and sunny morning make sure to ask for one.  He’ll whip on that white apron and be happy to oblige. 

THANKSGIVING:  Mimosas.  As of late, they’ve been a rather smaller family affair so I try to get a little more inventive with them; adding some cranberry juice or spiced cranberries or bitters.


Afternoons are the trickiest part of drinking all day and all night, so, please, pay close attention.  Here’s where many of you may stumble and fall.  Afternoons are most often reserved for white wine (cheap, therefore, plentiful.)  Most people (my brother-in-law excepted) simply can not drink beer all afternoon and stay awake and not get completely bloated.  White wine, admittedly tends to make one sleepy as well but at least one doesn’t get so full!  One needs room in the stomach for more white wine.  AND, now here’s the really important part:  It is imperative that one eats all throughout the afternoon to counter the effects of the alcohol.  This is where, the aforementioned sister falters.  She simply doesn’t eat enough while imbibing.  Very, very important.  Chips and clam dip, soppressata and pecorino, all the various odds and ends and left-overs from Jordon’s fridge, served right from their Tupperware containers fresh out of the microwave.  Eat, people, Eat!  If you follow this rule you and your family should be able to knock off about half a case or so while whiling away the hours playing countless games of gin, decorating Easter Eggs, watching old movies and cooking and baking.  On the rare occasion, we may throw in a shot of limoncello if we have one around but we usually stick with the white stuff.  Also, again, no shame at all in an afternoon nap.  It will revive you for:

COCKTAIL HOUR:  Now, this is an extremely important rule in my bourbon drinking family.  Yes, we are bourbon drinkers (also).  No bourbon before 5:00.  That is the rule and there is no getting past it!  My sister, Jordon, used to have a clock that would make a different bird sound when it chimed the hour.  I believe 5:00 was the goose.  When we heard that we would perk up like dogs hearing the car keys and go, “Oooh.  It’s Bourbon O’Clock” and head for the ice.  You hear that Amy Vaughan?  No bourbon before 5:00.  Well, maybe 4:30 if it’s winter and cold and dark out…or 4:00.

DINNER:  Wine of course.  It’s a no-brainer.  Here’s what we save the good stuff for.  Jordon will break into her cellar of mostly very nice local Zinfandels or my mom will haul out some of her good stuff from over the years.  Well, most of the time it’s good.  The really dusty ones that still have my dad’s notes on them are sometimes a little scary.  Let’s just say when the cork crumbles when touched with the corkscrew it’s usually not so good.

NIGHT:  After dinner can get a little tricky also; especially if someone pulls out a bottle of port.  If that happens it’s usually the end of all of us and time for bed.  However, if it’s still fairly early and there’s, say, a movie to watch then it’s back to bourbon and sodas to be enjoyed with homemade popcorn.

So, there, fellow drinkers, you have it.  A quick guideline to drinking all day and night, a few simple rules to follow and your family get-togethers can be pleasant and beaver free.

One last rule.  Before retiring, one must make sure there’s a very large glass of water next to one’s bed and plenty of cold beer in the cooler for breakfast.


4 Responses to “Rules for Drinking (all day and all night)”

  1. jordon Says:

    I believe ti was “goose” oclock. I agree with your rules compeletely.

  2. Amy Says:


    I am REELING from the amount of alcohol consumed! How can anyone possibly handle that much, and still speak coherently? And still function? And still be witty, charming, and gay?
    Am aghast. Simply aghast.
    Daintily Yours,

    Miss January Wagon’
    AKA Sitting-on-the-but-just-wait-till-next-Tuesday-Wagon!

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