Every now and again (and by that I mean about once every few months) I experience a torturous inner conflict about the nature of life, the importance of material goods, and my existence as a catalyst for these forces. In these moments, which are usually booze-related, I am usually ubalanced in some way - not chemically or psychologically so to speak, but maybe emotionally. My sleep is usually poor, my dreams are bizarre and intricate, and I'll usually be worried about something like my hair falling out. In these moments I step back, look at my life and ask "What the heck am I doing?" For example, I might look at my booze collection and say, "My God, why am I so consumed with these bottles?" All the money spent, the focus given, the evenings I've turned into nothing more than a hazy blur - is this what it's all about?
Sometimes, in these depths of metaphysical turmoil, the best thing to do is to reorganize your liquor collection - drink that last drop of Port Ellen you've been saving, give some bottles away to friends or colleagues, and exorcise the ghost from your mind. Many of us find whisk(e)y so appealing because, unlike wine, once you open the bottle the booze won't spoil in the short term, meaning that you can keep numerous open bottles at once. The problem with this phenomenon, however, is that it opens the door for hoarding tendencies - "I can't possibly finish that last bottle of Talisker 30, it's too important to me!" No one wants to arrive at the point where their liquor shelf becomes an object of frustration for a loved-one, or a monsterous calamity in the course of everyday life. The best remedy for any booze collection crisis is purging, and it usually feels terrific when you're done.
This weekend I gave away open bottles to co-workers, brought bottles home to my parents, relaxed with the wee bit of Brora 30 I had left, and cleared out over half of my inventory. I felt so good that I then packed up all that old vinyl that I never listen to and drove to Amoeba for some serious selling. $125 richer than when I arrived, I then bought some cleaning supplies and scrubbed down the apartment. Now, I'm sitting at my dining room table, looking at my spotless surroundings, and feeling like a giant weight has been lifted off my shoulders. All I have left on the bar are some full bottles of Scotch that I bought within the past few weeks, some Campari, and a few other staples like Four Roses bourbon and El Dorado rum.
I feel cleansed, empowered, and proud that I had the ability to put my own emotional well-being over the stack of bottles that was piling up over in the corner of my living room.
I feel so renewed, that I might just use what's left of my vinyl profits to treat myself to a new bottle of Alligator today, or maybe the Auchroisk 20.
Booze tastes so much better when you're guilt free!