A Glass of Wine: A Timeline

This is not my first, and nor will it be my last glass of wine. I have been abstaining for several weeks, and I thought it would be interesting to jot down a timeline of the effects. It may be uneventful, but if nothing else, it will be a solid descriptive writing exercise. Let’s commence. 

Time: 5:50 P.M.

Location: Hollywood, MD

Wine: “Josh” Cabernet Sauvignon

5:50 P.M. (First Sip) I am sitting at my writing desk. Grains of white sand are falling effortlessly through the hourglass which is “set” for approximately thirty minutes. The wine has a rich, bold, and flavorful taste. It would be paired well with a nice, juicy steak. The stereotypical cheese and crackers would be an acceptable addition as well. I must be hungry…

6:00 P.M. The music I am listening to sounds more intense, and I am picking up on notes that would typically go unnoticed. I have a slight tingling sensation in my forehead, and my mouth is producing extra saliva (possibly still from the hunger). I have only taken a few sips. About to take a few more. Ah, dhude…

6:05 P.M. The last few sips brought the smell of the wine into my palette with more force than the initial taste. Music is much more enjoyable. Body is starting to warm slightly. The sensation in my head has amplified. Can only describe it as an enjoyable lightheadedness. 

6:10 P.M. The warming sensation has intensified. I feel more relaxed and have unconsciously taken a few deep breaths. The stress of the day seems to be melting away. My eyes feel slightly heavy, and the taste in my mouth is slightly acidic. I find my mind wandering to thoughts of the absurd trends in the past few years….people eating Tide-pods, killer clowns, Pokemon Go, Kylie Jenner lips etc. Ah, people. My favorite species to study. 

6:15 P.M. Rereading the last entry has made me sigh a few times. The internet has given us an unlimited supply of abstract data. The average person consumes ten and a half hours of media per day. Ten and a half hours of zeros and ones convincingly disguised on a screen. Unreal. Literally. I got a haircut today (went to the people groomer’s shop). Not a single person in the waiting room was doing anything aside from looking at their phone. I was reading a “Wired” magazine part-time (which was fairly interesting), and the rest of the time I was people-watching. It was fascinating. Fascinating and depressing I suppose. 

6:20 P.M. Feeling the effects much more than I expected (probably due to my low tolerance from abstinence). Chipper yet somber feeling with thoughts of humanity’s ineptitude. 

6:25 P.M. Looked for the Puritan word for abstaining from drinking. Stumbled upon an article about “drinking in America.” In 1790 Americans were consuming 5.8 gallons of pure alcohol per year. In 1830 people they were drinking 7.1 gallons per year. Craziness. Have begun to chuckle unexpectedly. Mood is less somber than before (may have been guilt from indulging?). Slow down man, one glass of wine. Party animal. 7.1 gallons of alcohol per year….on average. Comically ridiculous. 

6:30 P.M. The view is called “temperance” and apparently this era brought about social reforms. Until 1862, the United States navy had a ration of a half pint of rum per sailor per day. Thomas Jefferson (author of our D.O.I. was notorious for importing European wines). The average American drinks only 2.3 gallons of pure alcohol per year compared to 7.1 in 1830. Oh, how the times have changed. 

6:35 P.M. Being a “teetotaller” means abstaining from alcohol completely. I don’t think sobriety makes you any “better” than other people, although I must admit it can provide some much-needed clarity and continuity at times. FDR apparently had strong cocktails every day with his staff. The reality, to me at least, is that people are fundamentally animals. We intoxicate ourselves with fermented grapes and fermented hops and grains. How utterly silly of us…yet, how enjoyable. Unfortunately, Nietzsche’s concept of becoming “the over-man” may never come to fruition. At least, not in my lifetime. Would self-sacrifice in terms of temperance save future generations from using and abusing alcohol? 

6:40 P.M. Probably not. If not alcohol, then some other substance. The human consciousness is hard-wired to seek distortion and alteration. Or maybe just the majority of us are? I’m not sure. What I am sure of, is that this glass of wine has made me do some exploring and some thinking at the very least. Overall, I would deem it a positive experience. It was enjoyable. It helped relieve some stress, made me feel more relaxed, brightened my mood, and adjusted my perspective for the better. Two glasses of wine in the past 5 weeks….I can’t even imagine drinking 7.1 gallons of pure alcohol over the course of a year. Really can’t. Any way, I think I’ll have another glass and call it a night. Cheers. 

Roommate Dealbreakers

  1. Not removing or replacing the toilet paper roll. 
  2. Not refilling the filtered water.
  3. Leaving the lights on. 
  4. Eating your individually-purchased food. 
  5. Not taking the trash out once it’s full.
  6. Leaving dirty dishes in the sink. 
  7. Inviting unwanted guests. 
  8. Leaving hair in the sink/shower.
  9. Poor hygiene.
  10. “I’ll pay you back.” without following through. 

A Finite Life in An Infinite Universe

Our lives are finite. The universe is infinite. This premise is an inescapable facet of human life. We have emerged from stardust and earthly matter, and we will return from whence we came. It is inevitable. How do we cope? 

This question has no correct answer. Searching for the answer until we draw our last breath seems to be the best method. Is it the only method? I suppose if you never ponder the meaning, then it makes no difference what you do in your lifetime. Ignorance truly is bliss. Clearly, your higher faculties have led you to this page in search for an answer, so I can only give you my best guidance. 

As you may have already noticed, the search for meaning is an endless journey. The routes stretch out before you in a vast array of possible avenues. Each thought, word, and action will lead you down a slightly altered path. Whether or not you are truly choosing, or being led subconsciously with a mere illusion of choice (free will vs. destiny) is certainly up for debate. For fun, let’s just agree that you are choosing your life’s path. 

Now comes the interesting part. In the classic sense, you are constantly making good or bad/right or wrong decisions. You are essentially becoming the hero or the villain in your mind’s eye. The truly interesting part is that they are both one and the same. All things lie on the same eternal and infinite spectrum. They vary only by degree, and the end at which they lie is only based on our own perception and perspective. Essentially, you are making it up as you go.

That being said, you’re probably saying, “Well, if that’s the case, then how do I know if I’m headed in the right direction?” Well, you won’t. And you never will. The only advice I can give you, is to listen to your heart (subconscious signals), the universal signs and symbols that appear in your life (awareness), and learn from your mistakes and those around you (be a lifelong learner). If you do these three things, your collective consciousness will at least feel as if you are making headway. I suppose that the sensation of living the “life you’re meant to live” is the ultimate goal. 

So what does this feel like? It is as if the entire universe has synchronized itself in order to provide you with exactly what you were looking for. It has provided you with the exact sensations you need to experience, at the exact time that you need to do experience them. Some of you may have experienced this sensation briefly, and some of you may have never had the pleasure of experiencing it at all.

Here’s the kicker. The universe has been doing this for each and every one of us, throughout our entire lives, and it will continue to do so. We are the input, and our subjective experience is the output. We are constantly creating our universe. We are the cause and our reality is the effect. As our thoughts are in constant flux, so is the universe around us. We are the “all” within the “All.”

Your life always has been, and always will be, exactly how you think it is supposed to be. You have always experienced, and will forever experience the places, people, situations, and sensations that will continue your life’s trajectory for your greatest possible benefit. This includes the people, places, situations, and sensations that you have deemed “negative”, “bad”, or “wrong.” The universe doesn’t make mistakes. The sooner you understand this, the better. “Well, then what do we have to do in order to create the life we want?”

Be accountable. You are the creator. You hold the keys. It can be broken down into the well-known philosophy of “what you think, you become.” If we are the conductors of our lives, there is no truer statement that can be made. Take control of your mind and your thoughts. Perform the actions they require of you with vigor and energy and watch as your life becomes exactly what you think it should be. There are no boundaries and no limits to the life you choose to create for yourself. With the proper thoughts and the proper actions, you can transmute your life into whatever you choose. 

The issue becomes time. How long will it take you to achieve and experience the life you dream of? That is mostly subjective, but those who learn more quickly, and apply these concepts more rapidly and consistently, have the best chance of experiencing their desired experience within their lifetime. If not, will they have the chance to try again? OR Is this our only chance? Those are questions for another post. For now, create the life you wish to live in your mind’s eye, take consistent action, adjust as needed, and watch as you transform the world around you into the life you’ve always wanted to live.