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A Guide to Partying for the Non-Drinker

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Not everyone in college likes to drink. In fact, for the majority of our freshman year, one of my roommates refused to go to parties because she doesn’t like the taste of alcohol. Unfortunately, she didn’t immediately tell me this. For the first couple weeks of school, she would find excuses not to come out. For example, come Friday or Saturday night, she had a paper to write or a TV show that she just had to watch.

After about two months of coming back to find that she hadn’t even started the paper or that she hadn’t even watched the show, I realized that there was another reason. When I asked her about it, she admitted that she simply couldn’t bring herself to drink, and she did not want to be the odd one out at parties.

About three weeks before school ended, my friend finally decided that she was going to come to a party with the rest of us roomies. And you know what, she had more fun than we did! Plus, she actually remembered the details of our enjoyable outing (she could recount in detail how we made complete fools of ourselves the following morning).

As a matter of fact, my roommate had such a good time that she came along to every party that we attended for the rest of the year, wishing that she hadn’t wasted so many nights back at the dorm doing nothing.

Now, I’m not saying that parties are the only way to have a good time on the weekends. However, if you do want to go out to parties with your friends but fear that you will be considered a social pariah if you don’t drink, here is some helpful advice:

1. Carry around a cup of soda. If you feel self-conscious because everyone else is holding a cup of alcohol, just grab a non-alcoholic beverage and sip on that during the night. There are bound to be drink mixers around such as Coke or Cranberry Juice. It will boost your confidence because others will assume that you are drinking, and it will allow you to fit in without compromising your decision not to drink.

2. Dance! Just because you aren’t drunk doesn’t mean that you cannot have a good time dancing at the party. You can dance with your girls, dance with a cute boy, or even dance by yourself (this often attracts the cute boy). Dance on the floor, dance on the bar, or even dance on the furniture…depending on the setting of party of course!

3. Strike up a conversation with someone who is drunk. Drunk people often say the darndest things! And only a sober person can truly appreciate them. Try asking your drunk friends simple questions; you will undoubtedly be entertained by their irrelevant or incoherent responses. If you want to hear a funny story ten times or if you want to hear the most intimate details of a person’s life that wouldn’t be revealed otherwise, then you should definitely consider talking to someone who is at their cut-off point.

4. Root Beer Pong. Fact: everyone likes beer pong—it’s a fun game. You don’t have to miss out just because you don’t like to drink. Replace the beer with something that doesn’t contain alcohol, and you are good to go. The same applies to other drinking games. For example, instead of taking shots of vodka, perhaps you could take shots of Red Bull. (Note: Do not do this during a Power Hour….you may not fall asleep until second semester.)

5. Don’t be a wallflower. You are not going to have a good time if you are afraid to meet people. You can be outgoing and interesting without the influence of alcohol. Don’t be afraid to act silly when you are sober because everyone else around you will be just as bad, if not worse.

[Photo courtesy of ballslist.com]

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