- Format: Kindle Edition
- File Size: 680 KB
- Print Length: 30 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
- Language: English
- ASIN: B008BMBGKW
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Average Customer Review: 1 customer review
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #480,659 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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In Praise of Hangovers (Kindle Single) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 30 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||
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After reading Evan Rail's essay "In Praise of Hangovers," I have a better notion of what a hangover is and how it affects the sufferer. I'm not sure that I would have been curious enough to spend an hour reading an essay about hangovers, but a few months ago, I read and enjoyed another of the author's essays, "Why Beer Matters," which sold me on his ability to write a fascinating article about a subject I had little interest in.
About the title: You wouldn't think there would be anything about a hangover that's praiseworthy, but the author believes that hangovers do have some redeeming qualities. For one thing, having a hangover greatly simplifies your life, reducing everything to one question - is it essential for your survival, or is it unnecessary. (Time-consuming activities like Facebook and Twitter suddenly don't seem so important.)
To balance the "benefits" of a hangover, the headache, nausea, and other symptoms, plus the guilt and remorse that usually follow a hangover, usually ensure that drinking to excess won't be repeated too often!
What made "In Praise of Hangovers" so readable were the little tidbits, such as the fact that the word "hangover" only dates back about a hundred years. Also, the severity of hangovers depends on what type of booze was consumed, due to some nasty substances called "congeners" that are created during fermentation.
The essay concludes with some practical advice on hangover cures - what helps and what doesn't (for example: take aspirin or ibuprofen, not acetaminophen).
Overall, a very interesting, well written essay about a topic that should interest many people - even teetotalers.
In Praise of Hangovers (Kindle Single) Evan Rail stands somewhere between Steinbeck's acceptance and my sometimes avoidance. I greatly enjoyed Rail paean to beer, Why Beer Matters. (My review appears in a clickable link appears in first Comment.)
He brings the same even-handness, albeit passion, to this short study of the hangover:
"... I was overwhelmed by a sudden need to turn away and find another point of focus, a common manifestation of the chalk-throated, dyspeptic malaise that often arrives after a night on the lash. By contrast, many morning-after observations barely achieve the level of the banal .... But I have also had enough crystalline and meaningful perceptions during hangovers that I have come to appreciate them, even welcome them, if only for the unique clarity of the cloudy, blurry-eyed vision they often provide." Welcome them?
Well, I suspended my disbelief, and read on. But let the record be clear; I never ever welcomed a hangover, and never saw any "unique clarity" on a morning after. I'm very much with Joris Verster who makes a list of over 30 symptoms, starting with Agitation and Anxiety, passing through Guilt and Headache and ending with Vomiting and Weakness -- not to speak of anorexia, chills, fever, and more. They sound contradictory -- agitation and sleepiness?, chills and fever? -- not to me they don't. But Rail speculates that people have many different symptoms and reactions to too much alcohol, and as I've written, I'm suspending my disbelief.
Certainly there are enough "patients" to go around. Over 11.6 million employees report going to work with a hangover during the previous 12 months; the British believe the average worker misses 2.3 work days and spending 2.5 "generally miserable" days at work.
Rail reports on the lack of scientific understanding of hangovers, lists a large number of delicious and not so delicious quotes from history about the condition, and describes in more or less detail how nonsensical much of the conversation and internet traffic is about what to do to moderate the symptoms.
Everything else: ignored.
Water: essential, during drinking, after drinking (at least twice as much as the volume of beer or wine)
Bed: more water, whenever I get up to urinate or whatever.
Everything else: ignored.
Your mileage will vary, of course; Rail proves I think that there are many responses to alcohol. But I certainly enjoyed reading Rail's insights on one of the side effects of one of my life's greatest pleasures -- the enjoyment of beer and wine, often in moderation, but at times, not.
Robert C. Ross
Actually, the more I think about this article and the information gleaned from it, the more I like it. And it was most appreciatively free of charge.
Just for the record: J, not C, Liggett