I enjoy a drink ... but I never thought I'd be neknominated
A FEW days ago I logged into Facebook to see what witty comments and posts my friends had left.
I was in a good mood, so I didn't get annoyed with any invitations to play silly games, and I wasn't irked by any life affirming messages of the "follow your angel and let the wings of life carry you" variety that normally makes me want to delete someone out of my life.
There at the top of the Facebook entries was my lovely pal Sam. She was visiting me from Scotland and I had only seen her in Dillingers restaurant in Ranelagh three hours previously.
We had had a lovely Sunday brunch, with a cheeky gin cocktail. I had to leave her to come home to do some work while Sam and a pal enjoyed some Sunday afternoon pints.
Anyway, I play the Facebook video, and Sam is talking to me with a pint in her hand.
And she takes the pint and knocks it back in one. Then she nominates me and another girl to do the same. End of video.
I look at my iPhone and wonder three things -- how did she do it and not barf? Why did she want to do it? And really, why the hell are these 'NekNominations' so popular?
Now Sam, and the other person I know who did it, are no spring chickens. I'm talking late 30s here. Yet the idea of skulling a pint and challenging two others to do it, completely tickled their livers.
In their case it was just a bit of fun, and they're grown women.
But then 'NekNomination' has been all fun and games until two two separate deaths of young men at the weekend were linked to the craze.
Skulling drinks is a bizarre part of our alcohol culture. I was out the other night with friends and I said I was a little tired.
The group I was with didn't say -- you should go home to bed, or have a glass of sparking water.
They shouted in unison -- "LET'S HAVE A SHOT". And I shouted back "GREAT IDEA!!!!!!". And so four teeny glasses of some potent liquid were knocked back in three seconds. I slept that night, but I had a bigger hangover the following day.
When I was in my early 20s, many a night would have us all chanting the words "skull it, skull it, skull it" as one of our group had to knock back whatever drink we were having at the time.
Irish people love alcohol. And they love doing weird things with it.
'Neknominations' has nothing to do with young men, or women, losing the run of themselves. It's about us as a nation, and our dysfunctional, damaging relationship with alcohol.
We just don't get it, we just want to skull it.