The Drunk "Lifestyle"

by Stan Mitchell
man-drinking3.jpg“They struck me,” you will say, “but I was not hurt; they beat me but I do not feel it! When shall I awake? I must have another drink!” (Proverbs 23:35, ESV).
Solomon wisely chooses to make gentle fun of the drunk. For some unaccountable reason, young people, wannabe “he-men,” and some empty-headed young women associate getting drunk with being smooth and debonair.
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So how do you puncture this perception? Solomon does it by imagining a drunk rolling with the punches, getting into bar room brawls, substituting booze for bravery, fumes for fearlessness. But as he’s bounced around the room, marveling at the fact that he’s not hurt, the reader senses that tomorrow he will know, the bruises and black eyes will remind him.
Then, most damaging of all is his addiction. Far from learning from his mistake, he wonders: “When can I wake up” so I can begin another round of drinking? When will he wake up, indeed.
Of course, addiction is not funny. The maimed bodies at the crash site, the beaten children when Dad returns home reeling and resentful, the money that should have gone to food and clothes burned up in an alcoholic haze.
But if one young person can see this “hero” for who he really is, then perhaps he can avoid the lifestyle. Because it’s hardly “life,” and it’s certainly not any sort of “style.”

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