• Michael Noctor


One of the people I stumbled across (online) during lockdown was Marisa Peer. She delivers interesting content with humour and one YouTube clip was about the four things people with good self-discipline practice.

I’m not sure how I feel about the concept of self-discipline because I feel that all work and no play make Jack a dull boy, and Jill a dull girl, and when I came across a Facebook post from last year about me being ninety days off the drink I tried to remember what brought an end to that bout of sobriety and I think it was boredom. There’s only so much sobriety a man, or woman, can take. However, the same principle applies to intoxication. I have enjoyed every drop of lockdown liquid alchemy – hold on, I want to see can I remember Hemingway’s quote – that brain-warming, stomach-warming, tongue-numbing, idea-changing (mind-altering, sorry Ernest) liquid alchemy.

Anyway, I decided that last night’s few drinkies would be the last for the next one hundred days.

I haven’t smoked for 248 days. I know the main reason I’ve stayed in non-smoking mode is because I would hate to have to tell my Katiebells that I’m back on them. I know how upsetting it was for her when I nearly died and I think smoking again would be like telling her I didn’t care, but smoking addiction doesn’t necessarily work like that and there’s nobody as shocked as I am that I didn’t restart, especially when I spent ten days in my beloved Málaga in January, a place I associate with lots of smoking with cafe con leche and cheap alcohol. So, it’s going to a be a case of don’t drink, don’t smoke, what do you do, you boring bollox. Maybe I’ll take up Saxophone.

I’ve been doing a lot of walking and sometimes when I do a circle of Corry’s Field beside the lake in Loughrea, I chastise myself (not out loud, well, maybe the odd time). It’s so contradictory; walking so much and then imbibing so much.

The truth is, I love intoxication. The truth is, I love sobriety. It’s a win, win. It’s Yin and Yang. It’s many things, including something to blog about and have a bit of fun with.

I will soon return to my Vagabundo lifestyle, which will make it easier to engage in continuous sobriety, but that doesn’t mean the temptation to pop into a bar for a few beers doesn’t exist. Mind you, I have a feeling pubs are not going to be much fun in the near future, and tbh I haven’t been a pub-goer very much for a few years, but that doesn’t count when I’m in Málaga! I’m not in Málaga now as Day 1 draws to a close.