But it’s so good.

 

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Hiking in Sandy, UT

Living in Salt Lake City has been awesome so far. The mountains provide endless recreation and beautiful photo opportunities. There are plenty of great people to meet. There are also a few great breweries that make some awfully tasty beverages.

The problem is that it’s just so damn expensive, and that’s an issue for an aspiring early-retiree.

Looking back at Test #2 in October 2015, I initially set my booze budget to $50. I blew past that mugger within about four days. In hindsight I probably shouldn’t have bothered considering I was on vacation from Afghanistan. It was also an impromptu trip to see a lady (which flopped horribly) and therefore I had a ton of extra time on my hands and thoughts in my head. I definitely drank in the same style of my 20’s, i.e. often and a lot.

I turned 30 this year, and I engineered that day so I would be home and done deploying. But mostly, I vowed to change my old drinking habit.

No more drinking alone.

Seems like a great idea. I don’t keep any booze in my apartment, so I’m not tempted to fall into old ways. Therefore, lately I’ve been waking to the bar down the street for a couple beers when the craving comes, because there are people there. This place is a total dive, but it has Spiral Jetty for $6.25. It’s essentially two pints of great IPA for $3.62 per pint, tip included. Anyone who has drank in Utah can see the value in this.

So when I’m at the bar, I’m technically not alone. There are other people there. College kids, riffraff, drug dealers, etc. But lately this has felt like a shitty excuse every time I walk through that door. The last couple times I’ve found myself thinking “What the hell am I doing in here?”

The answer was simple. IPA.

IPA is just so delicious. I really do love the taste, and the slow coat of comfort that 6.6% ABV provides.

But in the end I really was drinking alone. I had no friends with me, and the people there weren’t the type of folks whom I would befriend.

It’s time to revise and improve upon my rule. I shouldn’t be finding loopholes in my own rules. A small leak can sink a big ship, in more ways than one.

New rule: No drinking without friend(s) also partaking.

Or something like that. It’s progress.

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