Mr Biroco is feeling groggy and cannot come in

JULY 05 03

It started in the morning, I think. Biroco rings me at work and asks the question – of course at that time of the day, it sounds like it might be a pleasant little beer or so. Later on during the day, you think more and you know how it will turn out – so I ring him back and cancel it. Later on Jasmine gives me a message '30. Joel rang'. I ask her about the 30 – and it means nothing. I call Biroco – and whilst dialling, I come to realise the thing that dissuaded me earlier is the very thing that's persuading me now. 'Ohhh, OK then – my place – 7:15?'. Done deal.

We usually meet around 4 and I am still thinking – well, we're not going to get very drunk if we meet at 7:15. So we meet. Out comes beer, more beer, some saki (very hot – good for you! [apparently]) – then more saki. It's started. Biroco tells me someone asked him about his drinking habits and if they were real – Hah! They don't know the half of it. 9:15 – the absence of beer and more saki forces us out on to the streets. We go to pubs, act like the big men we are, and do the usual stuff – play spoof for cognac, get talked into writing this and generally degenerate. We both reel back to chez moi sometime in the earlier hours of the morning – a little tipsy – just a tad, honest! Well, he can tell you more about it if he wishes, I'm not!

Fortunately, it wasn't one of those nights when you wake up with the cringe factor. You know, when the recollection of what you said or did the previous evening yawns, wakes up with you and goes for a stroll inside your head. I have had those – when you think – 'bugger! did I say that?' and you end up spending rather more time than you would want to trying to dispel the memory of a large portion of the night before. Sometimes it's the only thing you can do.

I've got a lot of time for Islam! The Qur'an says you shouldn't drink alcohol at all (along with divining arrows [i.e. Al Azlam], it's one of the filthy tricks of Satan – 5:90) and I know why. It's not the alcohol, it's us (well, ok, me!). We're still animals at the end of the day and no matter how much we act civilized, it just takes a little key to open up Satan's little treasury of greed, desire, egocentricity and all that sort of stuff – the stuff that civilized people should either dispel or keep locked up. But – somedays you have a few perfectly innocent beers – and from the inside you may look like the benevolent king of the world – but from everyone else's perspective – you are just another nasty brutal little dictator. Not that I have got 'issues' with any of that, of course – I am just saying – that's all! So, maybe I will cut down on my drinking – a bit – sometimes – you know what I mean.


[Written by S. Hogan]