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Grapevine : July 2011
like Donkey Kong. For the rest of the night, I drank, danced, barfed and cried. I embarrassed my sister and myself, but luckily, nobody teased me about it. My sis was way too cool for anyone to think of me as anything other than a cute, drunken mascot. When I left for college, I felt out of my element, nervous and shy. But that didn't last long, as I quickly found myself a friend, a wild girl from Hawaii who was pretty, fun, ex- otic and chose me to be her roll dog. Together, we drank, fought, partied, and somehow managed to get good grades all four years of college. We were inseparable. We thought we were invincible. So much of college is a blur. I always found myself trying to piece together what happened the night before based on what club logo was stamped on my wrist (or forehead, depending on the night), what mes- sages were on my phone, and who was there the next day. It was a vi- cious cycle, but it all felt part of the college experience. I thought every- one drank like me. My family and hometown friends started distancing themselves from me. I remember thinking that they were just jealous of my raucous lifestyle. I was a wild card. You never knew what you were going to get with me. Sometimes, I was dancing all over the place, happy and bois- terous. Others, I was crying my eyes out in a puddle on the floor. I acted this way in the workplace as well, taking full advantage of the casual- ness around drinking in my industry. I stole alcohol from my employer, manipulating people into supporting my insatiable need to drink. I found other people who liked to drink as much as I did and kept them close. I should have been fired or killed in a car accident more times than I could ever hope to recall. Not only was I a blackout drinker, I was also a liar. I couldn't turn it off. I lied about unimportant things, like what time I got home and what I'd worn the night before. Lying came more naturally to me than the truth. Keeping up the ruse was exhausting. To this day, there are certain things I am not totally clear about. When I was young, a friend died in a car accident. For years, I lied and said I was in the car, too. Sometimes, even today, I have to remind myself that this was not the case. I always found myself trying to piece together what happened the night before based on what club logo was stamped on my wrist (or forehead). 42 July 2011