Right now I am at home and am pretending to write an essay for my Theorizing the Commons class but the attempt is a failure so far. So, I am reading Medium instead.
This post on women and drinking inspired me to retrospectively look at my time in London – the city of everyone’s dreams – and to make some New Years resolutions.
It is always interesting to notice some habits within a culture. The very first time I came to London, I could not but think that this is such a drunkard culture – all the pubs and clubs around. 5 and a half years later, has my view changed? Yes and no. Most of the people who frequent pubs visit them to socialise. It is usually after work or later in the evening, so it’s a bit too late for coffee, and a bit cheaper than having dinner, and gives you a feeling that you earned it (and after some stressful days at the competitive environment seems to be needed.) Yet, even taking into consideration the fact that it is a common way for chill-out, still, there is a bit too much of casual drinking within the culture (or maybe just my environment).
Here are two examples when I found it to be too much:
After the last class of the Fall semester, which happened to be a museum visit, our tutor invited us to the pub. Well, nothing too wrong here, but the fact that the pub didn’t serve either food nor had any tea & coffee is. It was a pity to see my Asian classmates uncomfortably cornering in the pub with those pints of beer. And frankly, I wasn’t up for any alcohol that afternoon either.
The second example is the company’s Christmas party. We were doing Secret Santa. It cost me perhaps 5 hours of unwanted Christmas gift search to find something good to give to a girl I have never met. (I am new to the company). I chose something a bit boring but equally good to anyone (unless they don’t use smart technologies) and that that I would be happy to receive myself – an external battery. I was not obsessing over what I will get, but I was pleasantly curious to see what my gift will look like. And here you go. A bottle of champagne. To top it up – the company gave a bottle of wine to each employee as a Christmas present. And here I was – heading home with two bottles of alcohol. I was glad I had chosen to take a bus to the venue and not my bike – if I did – I would have probably broken at least one of the bottles. I guess, the gifts themselves are not that bad – I can always regift them to others, but the presupposition that everyone drinks – is.
To add a bit weight to my argument, another observation about the events at uni is that whenever there is a reception following any talk/book presentation/discussion it is either wine, water, juice and some crackers or just wine and water. Which shows that the one constant (with water option of course) is always wine. Where is the health promotion at UNI?
Thus the medium post and my observations prompted me to attempt to be more mindful of my own actions. I will try to:
1. Reduce the alcohol intake (I never really enjoyed booze anyway).
2. Drink less coffee (I am doing it too often and it is way too overpriced).
3. Wear a mask while cycling. (One of the things I noticed when landing in Lithuania, is how fresh the air in Lithuania is, and how polluted it is in London or at least SE London.)
4. Less procrastination.