Sunday, June 08, 2008

Takin' it for the team; Let's hear it for the DDs!

If you have friends who like to go out and have a good time, you know that sometimes you have to take your turn being the Designated Driver (DD). Not getting to drink is a very small price to pay when the alternative is putting yourself or people you care about at risk of getting a DUI, DWI or something worse. Personally, I believe drunk driving is the dumbest crime anyone can ever commit since it's so unnecessary. There are always alternatives and to ignore them is just selfish and stupid.

Besides, it's not like it's a completely thankless job:
  • You get to take care of your friends and help keep them safe from harm, which feels nice.
  • Unless your friends are complete assholes, they'll sincerely appreciate your sacrifice and let you know about it.
  • While you may only be drinking soft drinks, fruit juice or water, you probably won't have to pay for it.
  • In most cases, you'll probably get dinner out of it too.
  • And there's the added benefit of still getting to spend time with your friends and enjoy their bad behavior with the benefit of an unimpaired view.
For example, I recently served as DD for a group of friends who wanted to enjoy the splendor of Ybor City, a place where you can witness a group of young men marketing their Christian/Hardcore band by walking up and down the street holding up a sign reading "Poop" and it probably won't be the strangest thing you see.
We visited a hookah lounge at the corner of 7th Avenue and 17th Street, underneath a tattoo/piercing parlor and next door to a Subway restaurant. Smoking from a hookah was something they'd never done before and that they were curious to investigate apparently. No problem. Since I wasn't drinking, it was very easy for me to say "no thanks". They got some kind of substance that was supposed to be watermelon flavored and most of the group thought that was what it tasted like. One very vocal member, however, insisted it "tastes like a Strawberry Shortcake doll smells". She also later said it tasted like a blueberry Pop Tart. It didn't exactly smell like watermelon to me, but it also didn't smell like a doll or a Pop Tart to me either. She asked why I didn't want any and I reminded her, "Hi, have we met? I'm Clark and I'm a non-smoker". "So am I!", she responded, as smoke billowed from her mouth and nose like a dragon. Later, on the drive home she made a remark about how interesting looking the guard rail along I-275 looked as we drove by. This was prior to her announcing "I feel weird". No kidding? You're an inebriated non-smoker who's spent the last hour and a half attached to a bong that smelled like somebody set fire to a bag of wet Skittles that you say tasted like either a toy or a toaster pastry who finds guardrails aesthetically intriguing. I don't see how you can even define "weird" at this point, let alone know if you feel that way or not.
The evening was capped off with breakfast at Ihop that took nearly 20 minutes to order due to a nearly fatal case of giggles. I don't know how they do it but waitresses on the graveyard shift must either absolutely love or hate their jobs. There can't be any middle ground there. I think they deserve at least as much love and admiration as the DDs and maybe more in some cases.

Bottom line is just because you're the DD doesn't mean you can't have a good time.


Wildhair said...

If I ever leave my house for a social occasion, I promise I'll share the insanity I view from a sober perspective. It sounds like something worth pursuing. (for sake of the blog, man)

Why, it's Clark! said...

One must always hone their craft, Wildhair

CableGirl said...

I frequently offer myself up as a DD. It's not because I don't like to go out and drink with my friends, it's just that I never really trust that someone else who offers will not drink. More times than one I've seen a DD having a beer and saying, "I'm only having one or two". Um... kind of defeats the point.

Great story about the non-smoker. :)

Thanks for offering up your opinion on my post yesterday. I truly appreciate the feedback.