About Me

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Delta, British Columbia, Canada
I took very early retirement from teaching in '06 and did some traveling in Europe and the UK before settling down to do some private tutoring. As a voracious reader, I have many books waiting in line for me to read. Tell me I shouldn't read something, and I will. I'm a happy, optimistic person and I love to travel and through that believe that life can be a continuous learning experience. I'm looking forward to traveling more some day. I enjoy walking, cycling, water aerobics & and sports like tennis, volleyball, and fastpitch/baseball. I'm just getting into photography as a hobby and I'm enjoying learning all the bits and bobs of my digital camera. My family is everything to me and I'm delighted to be the mother of two girls and the Gramma of a boy and a girl. I may be a Gramma, but I'm at heart just a girl who wants to have fun.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Innate Intelligence Trumps Intoxitated Idiocy


"Do as I say, not as I do!" was the frequent refrain we all heard from our Dad. Like all teenagers, we thought he was a hypocrite as he openly drank his beer and hard liquor from his well-stocked cabinet.

However, as we got a little older, he began to teach us how to drink responsibly. Starting at age 16, we were allowed a glass of wine with dinner. At age 19, Dad was on a course in the city where I was living on campus and he gave me a rye & ginger ale in his hotel room before taking me out to dinner. Although he did mention that I wouldn't be allowed anything like that in the restaurant since the drinking age was still 21 at that time.

So I learned to drink responsibly, right? Yeah, right.

Living in residence on campus, I was like a wild beast suddenly let free from its cage. I loved the parties, the drinking, the carousing, the liberty from all parental restraints.

Drink responsibly? Nah! Par-Tee! Par-Tee! Hey, this was the late 60's!
My friends and I frequented the frat parties that were open to any girls on campus. And I ended up meeting and dating one of the guys for the entire year. Practically every weekend there was a party at the "house" with music, dancing, and making out after drinking ourselves to a sleepy and vulnerable state.

At one of the biggest parties of the year, long tables were laid out for the sumptuous meal and wine poured freely from the bottles that just kept on appearing. When the band started up, we were all ready to "get down." Strains of The Rolling Stones, Jefferson Airplane, The Doors, Jimi Hendrix, Steppenwolf, and Chicago got us even more drunk on the beat and the rhythm. At one point, I remember climbing up on the table and dancing solo while everyone cheered me on. Later, my boyfriend and I found ourselves behind some gigantic draperies working on our virginal lust factories. (No! No! all was still intact as we stumbled out after being discovered

A frequent haunt of the campus crowd was a local hotel bar. I'd go there with groups of friends all the time, but once I went with the president of our student council when my boyfriend was studying. As a joke, we thought we'd see how much beer we could drink that night. Driving back (and yes this was a time when people would drive drunk! How stupid could we be?) he had to stop while I vomited into the bushes at the side of the road.
Another time while hanging out in my boyfriend's room in the frat house, we made so-called "screwdrivers" with orange pop instead of orange juice. Two guys shared a room with bunk beds and two desks. Not much floor space, so a bunch of us climbed onto the top bunk to drink. Comfortably settled, one more guy decided he'd climb up, too. Well, no sooner had he put part of his weight on that bunk than the whole thing collapsed with booze, pop, and students flying. The next morning I experience my first true hangover.

There were other times, too....hanging head in shame.

To this day, I detest beer, red wine, and screwdrivers. I can't believe I didn't get hurt, raped, or killed during that time. And I can't believe I managed to get my teaching degree. Thank God drugs weren't involved because I probably would have given them a try, too.

Although our parents thought they were teaching us responsibility, I do believe that they over- protected us most of the time. They didn't allow us to make mistakes growing up at home. So as soon as I felt that freedom from their control, I became an idiot. Yes, an intoxicated idiot.

So if you ever use that phrase, "Do as I say, not as I do" to your kids, be sure to explain the whys and wherefores of it. Tell your kids that you made mistakes growing up and that they will make mistakes, too. But also explain that drinking to excess is a mistake that can lead to life-long problems of a mental and/or physical nature.

Thank God I was blessed with some innate intelligence that overcame the intoxicated idiocy.

41 comments:

Aileni said...

I used to drink too much but I haven't had any since I was fifty - twenty-two years now.

Jo said...

I think we have all gone through our silly times when we were just learning how to drink responsibly. Now I watch the young kids next door going through the same thing.

My grandson said to me the other day that when he grows up, he is never going to drink in front of his children. Whatta guy!

CrazyCath said...

A clever way to deal with the I post and to get a message across - a sobering message!

I'm working on my I post now. Not the easiest of letters...

Brian said...

good blog and a good message to send.

Thanks for comments on my "I" blog

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

A very honest and wonderful post, Leslie.

Reader Wil said...

Those were the days, but in spite of ddrinking, going out etc, we still were more innocent than the teenagers of today.

Gordon said...

Been there, done that. My mother tried very hard to dissuade me from drinking, as she had seen first hand the effects of abuse; her father was an alcoholic.

me ann my camera said...

A post with a lesson for all young people today; based upon life experience which is the best teacher of reality there is. A fascinating read.

Berthddu Suit said...

Great post, thanks for sharing your stories. I to believe in letting children live for themselves a philosophy I learnt from my father.

Ruth D~ said...

It's scarey some of the things we did, and managed to survive. Which is why we worry about our own kids. I was a "good kid", but still . . . yikes. My kids are "good kids". Yikes!

babooshka said...

Hilarious and yes sobering thoughts. impressive post.

holly said...

i think some lessons you have to learn. and i think sometimes the hard part is being the parent that lets the learning occur. all we can do, as you say, is arm them with information.

Columbo said...

Yes I did drink a 'little' in college. I was in a frat and in Colorado you could dring 3.2% beer back in the 60's. Of course we had our fake ID to get the hard stuff. I survived, but mostly because I watched the others make a fool out of themselves. You do learn by watching. I have a 13 year old so will be trying to set a good example. Nice posting, got us thinking.

Kim from Hiraeth said...

That's some very good advice.

MEDITERRANEAN KIWI said...

i loved this story - excellent teaching value

Island Rambles Blog said...

nice blog with a real message and one that is worth reading also..hi there neighbour...come and see my first ABC...I probably did not do it correctly either...cheers.

antigoni said...

Although my friends in school time pressed me to drink to fit with their company, i never taste it. I don't like beer or whisky and i drink a glass of wine when we go to weddings. Great choise for letter "I".

naturglede said...

So fun to read your story. I enjoyed it:)

ArneA said...

Very intriguing post.
We all learn from previous mistakes, but don´t think too much about the past. Live now and plan for future adventures with a glass of wine when feeling for it.

Fat, frumpy and fifty... said...

....'interesting interpretation of i'

Outhouse Capital of Canada said...

Your story sounds familiar, In England as an apprentice, we would go to the pub and I was just 15 years old but had no car, just the bus.
Hey, could you not find a bottle of Canadian wine for the picture, even better a bottle of wine from Oliver.
I used Imbibe as one of my 'I' words.

Miss_Yves said...

Impressive post...
Thaks for your comment on my blog
have a nice wednesday!
Miss Yves

Maggie May said...

I really thoughtful post. Thank you for the message that you left on mine. I also empathize with you.

Jay said...

An excellent and very creative post for ABC Wednesday!

It's an interesting thing, isn't it? A lot of parents think they're teaching responsibility when all they're doing is shielding the child. When our boys were young, I had the Penelope Leach baby book and she clued me up.

At one point she said 'if one day your toddler decides to eat nothing but chocolate biscuits till he makes himself sick, let him. How else will he know what happens when he over-indulges?' It's not an exact quote, but you get the idea.

You can't do it all the time, of course, but allowing a child to overindulge under supervision, isn't always a bad thing. Makes sense to me, anyway. ;)

VP said...

I laughed so much as this Leslie as it echoed so much my student days in the 70s. I think the excess finally teaches us what our parents were telling us all along. Perhaps we have to learn the lesson for ourselves, by practical learning, not the theoretical way?

'JoAnn's-D-Eyes'NL said...

I What????
Hahaha Leslie your post make me laugh ,
But I will remember the song: "Do as I say, not as I do" to my kids, I make sure to explain the whys and wherefores of it. I explain that drinking to excess is a mistake that can lead to life-long problems, thats so true!!(and Leslie ,How's you back doing?)

thanks fo thi geat post Leslie1

Greeting for JoAnn's D Eyes
www.joannwalraven.blogspot.com

Louis la Vache said...

Great post! Sobering (ahem) thoughts!


"Louis" has added a link to your blog at his.

Deb said...

Good Morning ~ Interesting and Important I Information! I could relate to this post - on many levels. I am thankful that I survived the seventies - and I say a prayer every night that my children survive their youth! Enjoy your day.

RuneE said...

Some very good points here. We seem to have grown up very much the same time. We all made our mistakes, but I never heard that sentence from my parents. They didn't have to. I never saw any of them really drunk and I don't think any of our four children have seen us either.

I suspect that the three of them that is old enough have had there experiences, but they seem to have learned from them.

I think that in many ways it all boils down to the "baggage" that we give them all the time. The little things in life, of right and wrong. That shows that we are human too.

Ellee Seymour said...

I am relieved that neither of my sons seem to want to drink excessively, they are very keen on health and fitness, but lots of their friends are not quite as sensible.

Peggy said...

I never have been a drinker; in fact, I never had an alcoholic drink until after I married! I still don't drink except maybe a mixed drink that I will nurse through an entire evening a couple of times a year. My husband, on the other hand...well, he loves his Jim Beam or vodka! Our daugher likes a wine cooler from time to time, and our son might drink a beer at a party, but neither one is into drinking, and I'm so glad!

Russell said...

Your post certainly brings back memories! To this day the very thought of vokda makes me almost sick - since I got so, so, so very sick drinking screwdrivers one night!!!

I drank a lot (gallons I am sure) of beer in college, but for some reason I can still drink a bottle of beer every so often - though I got sick on that, too, more than once when I was young.

I have never been one for hard liquor but, then again, I have never been around a quality brandy or scotch, etc.

I am usually happy ordering a glass of water!!

Take care!

Bear Naked said...

What a very Interesting and Informative posting for ABC Wednesday letter I.

Bear((( )))

mrsnesbitt said...

Good post leslie. I am with you too, to this day I can not drink pernod following a binge session! We will open a bottle of something when you come over! LOL!

Lilli & Nevada said...

That is funny, i used to drink sometimes not too responsible cause if i did i wouldn't have had those gosh awful hangovers.. LOL Great post

AphotoAday said...

Well, that was interesting reading... My parents were non-drinkers, and they did their best to pass their views on to my brother and me, but of course that just didn't work...

After a six-pack a day for 30+ years I finally quit drinking six or seven years ago, but on rare occasions I'll have one, and although I really enjoy the taste I no longer appreciate the after-effects -- no matter how slight...

Nydia said...

That was a great post, Leslie. We all make mistakes and I guess we all drank too much when younger, seems like this kind of stupidity is in the collective blood system. I went through that phase as well, parties, friends, boozes... Then in my case, it wasn't worthy anymore - too much migraines, specially when I got pregnant. When I knew I was pregnant, I immediately quitted the little I still drank and smoked (weed, yes, i did it for some time), and I never had it again - nothing against a good cup of wine, it's just that I'm too weak for drinking. The last time I drank, half a can of beer, on a Rolling Stone concert at Copacabana beach two years ago, it was enough to get me dizzy!
Rodrigo and I prefer not to have alcohol drinks at home since we have our son, we're so much into natural fruit juices!
I hope we can teach wisely to Lucas the way roads are paved, even knowing that he will probably walk the same ones we did!

Kisses!

starnitesky said...

Brilliant post. A hard way to learn the lessons, typical of most students I guess. I never did drink - still don't except the occasional glass of wine.

Powell River Books said...

I had quite a night once with Harvey Wallbangers. I know first hand how they got their name! Now just the smell of them makes me feel queezy. I invite you to come by and taste some of my homemade ice cream. - Margy

PERBS said...

I started drinking when I was of college age and sure acquired a taste for strawberry daiquiris. I enjoy one now and again but I never learned to really drink to get sick. That reminds me, I bought some rum hmmmm several years ago to make me a daiquiri and its still in the cupboard. lol Guess you might say I really never had a drinking problem.

Glad you made it through that period of your life!

jam said...

Nice write up! I always think that western family is more open minded in educating their children, not like us. I didn't know that there are some restrictions too on what can be done and what cannot be done. Anyway, kids nowadays are very much different than our days. Too much restrictions or inventions in their life does no good.