Alcohol messaging in America is confusing. Society teaches us that drinking leads to bad decision making and child support, yet media depicts drunks as a lively and fun bunch, living without fear and surrounding themselves with coeds. One group is irrationally influenced by prohibition, while the other is trying to sell more booze. If we listen too closely, we all be depressed drunks, tormented by the enjoyment alcohol brings believing it will only end in misery anyway. Unfortunately, our parents never taught us the benefits of drinking (not totally there fault, they were probably misinformed. Current research actually suggests drinking holds many positives. We’ve ignored hype and lecturing and instead turned to science to create a list of real-life situations you should prepare for with a drink or two.

Raising a glass for love

When your best friend gets married, you may be looked upon to say something memorable to commemorate the occasion. A toast at a wedding can be a stressful event. Most people admit to a strong aversion towards public speaking, plus weddings carry additional pressure because everything must be “perfect.” It is her day, you know. Equaling the bride’s ridiculousness is alcohol’s clarity and rationality. You see, many believe that drinking calms nerves, though that might not actually be the case. A recent study, though, suggests when we drink, we lose sight of consequences beyond what is immediately happening in front of us. Thus, you exist only in the moment, not concerned about what people will think of your speech tomorrow, essentially ignoring your nervousness. Alcohol enables you to boldly retell that childhood memory of the groom that makes the audience laugh and cry. So before you raise your glass for the toast, make sure you’ve emptied two previously, and knock’em dead.

Rock the mic

Seems like we’re stating the obvious when we say Tequila Tuesday and karaoke go hand in hand. You’d never do that sober, right? Well, why not? A recent New Yorker article attempting to shed light on surprising (to some) alcohol research that explains the images people have of themselves when drinking. Turns out your self-image does not necessarily differ when sober or drunk, unless the perception is out of whack with reality to begin with. For example, if you believe you are a tremendous dancer, yet the bar would unanimously vote otherwise, alcohol amplifies this self-assurance. However, if you truly can move, drinking does make you feel your skills are even greater. Hence, if you secretly know you could win American Idol, given the chance, but even Paula wouldn’t actually say something nice about you, then after a few shots, you are going to prove the audience wrong. Ignorance is bliss.

Own the pub quiz

Generally drinking is associated with memory loss, but you can probably guess what we are going to tell you next. While, it might be true for wasted individuals, moderate (1-3 drinks per day) consumption does not produce the same effects. In fact, a drink a day actually improves cognitive function. Alcohol is great for your brain, as many studies have suggested it aids in warding off or delaying dementia and Alzheimers. In addition to preventing disease, alcohol was shown to improve memory. A well functioning brain is key for Trivia Night, so take care of your head by feeding it pints. Enjoy your favorite and the taste of victory at the same time.

Sink the eight ball

When you are playing pool at the bar, there are lots of distractions – loud music, trash-talking friends, possibly topless girls dancing, etc. As we touched on earlier, alcohol assists the drinker with focus, for better or worse. Its the reason guys take girls home they normally would not; they are honed in on the bedtime prize, unable to consider the morning’s walk of shame or worse a rash that appears after 30 days (hint: if your buddy is trouble, remind him all night Al Capone died of syphilis. That is all he will remember and likely bid the girl a good night.). Alcohol, as anyone who has seen video of a field sobriety test knows, affects motor skills. So how does alcohol help your game? First, you are not considering years of shot advice you’ve received from amateurs, or the dancing ladies. The fact that your muscles are not responding perfectly means you are not so tense, and less likely to pull the cue wide. Your only thought is putting the ball in the pocket, which you will accomplish smoothly. Pool is a game classically paired with pints, do not abstain if you want to win.

Live Forever

This is an activity we at MadeMan are very fond of. Hey, so far, so good. Our secret? Daily boozin‘ (in moderation of course). A critical mass of scientific studies have shown that moderate drinkers live longer, healthier lives than abstainers or binge drinkers. You need to focus on existing in that happy medium. The studies reveal favorable mortality rates in elderly drinkers versus abstainers. Moderate consumers also contribute to less of the total acute hospitalizations. Fact, your heart loves alcohol. Drinking has been shown to lower coronary heart disease (CHD). Also, after suffering a heart attack, patients who increased their weekly consumption to 6 drinks were much less likely to experience another attack. Strokes, Parkinson’s, diabetes, arthritis, the list goes continues. For a lengthy, disease free existence, have a drink. But you probably already knew that. Cheers.

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