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So I turned 21 on Christmas Day, and my sister and I had planned to go see the movie Les Miserables after I got done with work. After the movie we had Applebees for supper, and then she had surprised me by taking me bar hopping with some of my friends.

Now I am not going to say that I haven’t drank before the legal age, but I’ve been smart about it if that makes any different at all. I do, however, recommend to those who may be turning this age, or will be eventually in the future, to go with people who actually know what they are doing and know the consequences of certain actions.

Last night, i had 5 shots and 2 mixed drinks in 45 minutes. In a little over 2 hours, i had taken 11 shots and 5 mixed drinks. That is not healthy, even if you are someone who says you could do more. It is especially not good since I only had 2 glasses of water while all this was going on.

So from this, I have a couple lessons for those who may not quite know what you are doing yet:

Lesson 1: Pace yourself. There is no need for you to prove yourself to anyone and you need to be aware of alcohol poisoning. I didn’t really realize how much I had been taking until we started counting and started saying “whoops.”

Lesson 2: Drink plenty of water. Especially before you go to bed. After I took shots, I washed down the taste with a mixed drink. Instead of doing that, I should have replaced the mixed drinks with water. I’m sure most of you know this, and I did too, but I didn’t really listen because I was having too much fun drinking some fruity stuff that tasted better than water. But don’t underestimate what water can do for you. Seriously.

Lesson 3: By the time you think you still aren’t drunk, you are probably drunk. Learn what the word actually means, cause apparently my definition was wrong.

Lesson 4: Have someone who has had what they are feeding you so they know how strong something is. If you aren’t sure, don’t be afraid to ask your bartender questions. Know what you are getting yourself into.

Lesson 5: I would have kept going if my sister hadn’t said it was time to go home. Have someone there to watch your back, pull you out the door to go home, and hold your hair when you puke, no matter how much it smells. Make sure it is someone you trust, because when it comes down to taking care of you, you want someone who is actually going to do it all the way through. Surround yourself with people you will have fun with, but also with people who wont do stupid stuff to you. I had a great group with me last night, and even a couple of the guys were telling me a couple of drinks to never let others convince me to take.

Lesson 6: Walk around when you’re drinking. I sat the whole time at the first bar except for getting up to go to the bathroom, but you dont feel how much you have had to drink until you get up to walk around, and if you have too much and dont walk around, you will fall on your ass or fall asleep next to the toilet if you dont walk around. Walking around lets you feel how much you’ve had so you have a better knowledge of when to stop.

There are, of course, more lessons that you will learn yourself, but start with these and go from there. People may expect you to get drunk, but don’t think that you have to. The sucky feeling you get the next day is really not worth it, and I definitely won’t go as far as I did next time. Sometimes the way you have to learn some things is unpleasant. Doesn’t mean you have to make the same mistakes others have.

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