The bar was more impressive--which is to say, more pretty bottles to demonstrate my refined taste in getting warm/numb/sloppy/hung over/regretful. Though, full disclosure, I get drunk a lot less since I discovered weed.
But there's one trick from my old flame I won't quit: Irish coffee*. Caffeine to energize, heat to nurture, liquor to disinhibit--it has long been a tool in my writing armamentarium and fueled the first draft of my first novel (publication date: 2023, maybe).
*My standard Irish coffee is coffee, Irish whiskey, Baileys. In Dublin this offended bartenders, who say Baileys makes it ugly--whipped cream and maybe a green drizzle instead (apparently in rebellion against the potatoes they turn coffee into TGIFriday's). And sugar to balance it out, obviously.
And my choice offended them. Good thing I didn't order an Irish car bomb.
But as I toured the liquor store post-The Decision to take my talents to Southeast (Asia) I realized I shouldn't buy whiskey when I have lots of whisky. Months passed and I slow burned through Crown Royal and Rittenhouse Rye (Bottled-In-Bond, y'all). I saw my little flask of JW Black and my big bougie bottle of Gold Label Reserve. And I could wax how this Gold Label isn't the same as the Gold Label 18 that I loved, that the new version tastes targeted to pretentious bottle-service d-bags who wouldn't know good scotch but then I'd have to cockpunch myself. Now I can just drink the asshole away (much harder for my ex-wife--she had to divorce him).
So how is it?
In coffee you can't tell the difference. And the Godiva liqueur? Can't take it with me either and it puts a lovely bow on the experience. Spend extra money as an Aspirational to appreciate the finer-enough things in life. Then blow it all up before its expiration date and drink it like Bushmills white.
Life can surprise. But it's just stuff.