I saw spiked seltzer at Whole Foods last week: yes, water with booze in it. It reminded me for some reason of those online alcoholism self-assessments. Imagine if one of the questions were “Do you buy alcoholic water?” If you answered yes, you’d skip all the remaining questions and go straight to a page that said “YOU IN DANGER, GIRL.”I don’t know about you, but I always found those quizzes pretty easy to game because they were so focused on big external consequences: jail, divorce, job loss. My drinking never led to those things–just, you know, a blunted heart and shrinking life, which in certain circles just look like adulthood.
My own Cosmo Quiz for Progressive, Life-Ruining Addiction would have looked something more like this:
Do you drink every day? Y/N
Do you frequently have more than 1 drink in a day? Y/N
“One drink” is a) 5 liquid ounces; b) 5 liquid ounces plus unlimited top-ups made when no one else is looking; c) it depends on how victimized I feel that day; d) I drink to escape bourgeois concepts like ‘ounces’ and ‘measurement.’ God.
Has your drinking led to anyone seeing you naked who maybe kind of shouldn’t have?
When I say ‘the five a.m. fear’ do you know what I mean?
Did you have the five a.m. fear today?
Will you have it tomorrow?
Are you overly proud of times you don’t drink?
Before five, at business dinners, when you have the flu?
Do you feel pretty special about having this one limit?
How tired are you? Not in numbers. In words.
Do you lie to your doctor about how much you drink? Your trainer? Your hairdresser? Select one:
The sexual choices I make while drinking are more/less dubious than the already arguably dubious sexual choices I make while sober.
Has anyone ever suggested you cut down on drinking? a) Yes; b) Yes but only assholes; c) No, because I’m lying to everyone; d) Why? What have you heard? Who is talking about me?
I seek out cinemas with bar service to relieve the terrible stress of watching a movie in a comfortable seat in an air-conditioned room.
I feel angry when people leave wine in their glasses.How scared are you? Not in words. In numbers.
T/F: Drinking as much as I want whenever I want is the primary way I express my feminism.
T/F: I tried to quit drinking once and failed.
Did you fall down the first time you ever tried to walk? Y/N If yes, are you still lying on the floor in your little overalls and saddle shoes, or did you eventually haul your ass up and try again?
Fill in the blank: One year from today _____________.
Fill in the blank: Five years from today ____________.
Cat got your tongue? It’s okay. This quiz is not timed. Those blanks aren’t going anywhere.