Academic Probation

Chris Blatch’s guide to the morning after

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So you've woken up from a long night at the Den and cannot remember the past 12 hours. You do not know where you are, maybe not even who you are. This is not uncommon, and by following the simple steps below, you should be able to survive the ordeal.

Step 1: Stay calm
Many students make the mistake of panicking. I cannot think of one situation where crying hysterically helps (aside from your non-academic misconduct trial), so do not revert to crying. Do not resort to defecating in your pants either, as this usually does not help. Also refrain, for the moment at least, from calling your parents, the police or your roommate to come rescue you. I'm sorry to be the one to tell you, but they find your suffering amusing and will therefore be of little help.

Another reason to stay calm is to not disturb your surroundings, or allow your surroundings to disturb you. You never know what Drunk You considered wise. You may be on a limb of a tree, dangerously close to a puddle of miscellaneous human produced liquids, or in some other predicament which will worsen with movement (it is easy to think you are asleep in a really comfy bean bag chair, when in fact it is an obscenely obese biker who bought you a few shots the night before). Stay still and stay calm.

Step 2: Examine your surroundings
Is there anyone sleeping next to you? If so, congratulations! You just had your first one-night stand. Even if you didn't, treat the situation like you did and get out of there ASAP, as nothing good can come from waiting around for the other person to wake up. Even if you're in your own place, get out of there. It is always best to have a friend, roommate or security guard remove the person. Do not attempt to remove the person by yourself. This could lead to the person being able to identify you, which is not good for potential future paternity suits. It will also spare you the horror of seeing who you spent the night with.

Drunk You is not a good judge of picking an attractive mate. Spare yourself the trauma.

If no one else is around you, slowly examine your surroundings. Use all your senses to figure out where you are, and what the hell happened. Don't just use sight. Smell is often a good indicator of the previous nights events. Avoid using taste.

Step 3: Look for clues
Drunk You often tries to communicate with you by leaving clues. Be open to these clues, although they may be obscure and hidden. Check your pockets to see what's inside. Receipts, ticket stubs and empty condom packages are often found. You may find other items which will give insight into the previous night's events, such as $25 of pixie sticks you thought were a good buy.

You will likely find a lot of change as well. This is because with every drink you bought the bartender gave you back change, hoping you would tip more if he gave you change instead of bills. But Drunk You is no fool, and doesn't tip at all. You now have $40 in loose change.

Check your hands for clues. If your hands have stamps on them, that may mean you wandered into one or more nightclubs. Don't worry, you were drunk so you can forgive yourself.

Your hands may also give useful instructions. That pen scribble on your palm may have been an attempt to write "get jacket before you leave." Burnt fingers may mean you ended up in a crack house. Quickly jump out the window and fly away.

Step 4: Look for a friend
One of your friends will often be in the vicinity. It may be a good friend, just a drinking buddy or someone you met the night before and ended up drinking with. Either way, do not abandon this person. It is your duty to wake them up and help them out. They may have information that could give flashbacks to the previous nights events. More importantly, they may have a car nearby.

Step 5: Find out the time
When put in this situation for the first time, many people try and find out where they are, what happened and why they are there. They often forget, however, to find out when they are.

Find a clock, this will indicate the time. Try and find a window to determine if it is a.m. or p.m. Also find the date, this will help determine how long you have been partying for.

Now, stop and think. Do you have work? If you do, call in sick. Do you have a class today? If you do, go to it at all costs. If you skip class you'll feel guilty about missing it. This may lead to questioning your lifestyle. In turn, this can lead to cleaning up your lifestyle which will lead to being 40 and wishing you spent more time having fun when you were younger.

Step 6: Clean up
Try to find a bathroom. You will most likely need to drain your system of as many toxins as possible. Try and fix your hair and appearance. You will not be able to cover up your stench, but wash your face anyway, this will help you wake up a bit.

Look in the mirror and note if you have all/any of your clothes. I recommend layering clothing to cover up your putrid stench. Also, if you can, chew gum or smoke a cigarette to help mask your smell.

Find water. You will most likely be either hungover, dizzy or still drunk. Water will help you out. Alcohol dehydrates the body, that's why you feel like shit. Find food. You may feel sober, but you're probably not. Your body will thank you later if you eat now. Greasy foods are the best, the grease will help your body process the alcohol by forming it into manageable congealed clumps.

If you still feel like crap, have a few more drinks until you feel good again.

Step 7: Get home
At this point the best thing you can do is go home. This will let people know you are alive. Sleep some more. Then wake up and repeat the process.

Precautionary measures:
I could give you generic advice about not getting drunk in the first place, but advice, that no one follows, no matter how good, is bad advice. So I'll try and give you some useful wisdom:

Sweet drinks lead to worse hangovers, so stick to strong ones.

Remember the maxim: Beer before liquor, never been sicker. To avoid this, I recommend mixing all your drinks (liquor and beer) together in a bucket before consumption. If the saying is true, this should rectify the problem quite easily.

Find yourself a Mormon. While Latter Day Saints may seem rational and boring, they do have one redeeming quality: they don't drink. Use this to your advantage, as they are natures designated drivers. Try to find one that likes to party, but stays sober while doing so. This will ensure that they don't take off early or before you are done whatever evil thing you do. Don't worry about being recruited--I guarantee if you're anything like me, they won't want you.

Leave your bank card at home. I can't stress this enough. You will start out saying you're only going to spend such and such an amount, but this never happens. You'll end up waking up with a headache and an empty bank account. A better route is to hang out with a friend you don't really like. Borrow their money, and don't pay it back.

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Comments

I laughed, I cried, I shuddered. This is the Gauntlets best story in the past 5 years I've been here. Why can't the Gauntlet make more stories like this one (at least AP articles anyways). Kudos to the writer and keep him on your payroll.