Friday, 3 December 2010

Victims of Alcohol (Part One)

It is not my intention to preach here - just to make aware.   I like alcohol - I like the way it makes me feel; it makes me more creative; it is another guest when good friends visit.   It can add a warm glow to life or it can be the stuff of nightmares  You can control it or it can control you.

There are many quotes attributed to Churchill in regard to alcohol, such as "Always remember I have taken more out of alcohol than alcohol has taken out of me" and "My rule of life as an absolutely sacred rite smoking cigars and also the drinking of alcohol before, after and if need be during all meals and the intervals in between them."

There has been debate as to whether Churchill was an alcohol abuser and historians would contend that he was not so, but alcohol dependent.  Alcohol abuser or dependent - he was undoubtedly a great man and a great leader.

Alcohol has been a common feature in those that have occupied Number Ten.  Tony Blair confessed to using alcohol as a prop during his time as prime minister; Nye Bevan and Micheal Foot were hard drinkers; Harold Wilson was a bit more secretive about brandy consumption; Maggie liked her Scotch an HH Asquith - the last Liberal PM was nicknamed "Squiffy."  Other party leaders or deputies such as George Brown, Charles Kennedy and John Smith have/had problems with alcohol; Brown and Kennedy's careers being seriously affected by same.

Handel, Bach, Schubert, Brahms and possibly Mozart were all dogged by alcohol abuse and in most cases it was the death of them.  These were great men and think what more they could have accomplished without alcohol - or maybe, alcohol fired and enhanced their genius?

Other great alcoholics in the field of writing are Dylan Thomas, Ernest Hemingway and Brendan Behan; WC Fields, Richard Burton, Liz Taylor in the world of acting: Elton John, Eric Clapton and Robbie Williams in music and George Best and Paul Gascoigne in football - in both instances, alcohol ruining their careers and in Best's case, taking his life.

All of the above are people of great talent - but they are remote from us.  They may touch our lives with their music, their writing or we may love/hate them as politicians; but they are not part of lives as family, friends or neighbours.

In some of our lives, the effects of alcohol are close enough to touch a raw nerve.  We may be an overt/covert alcoholic ourselves; our partner might be one, our father or mother, our friend or workmate.  In some way, our life might be affected by alcohol abuse, and if so, it will probably be our unwanted little secret.

Alcohol can be a good companion or our worst enemy.  Out there, in that big wide world, there are many hidden victims and following posts will focus on their plight. 

Do you think alcohol can inspire and enhance genius?

Anna :o]


NorthernTeacher said...

I've been researching (good word that) so that I can put some authenticity into a book (I've had on my mind for ages).

Maybe a little drink will get the ideas flowing?




Nope! Doesn't work for me!!

Seriously, half a bottle of wine sends me to sleep. Not that I don't try it quite often to see if I can ever stay awake afterwards :-) But I can't see how numbing the brain can bring out the genius in me (or anyone else).

HyperCRYPTICal said...

Hi NT,

I am not claiming to be a genius - far from it(!), but alcohol definitely brings out the creative side in me; the mind goes into overdrive and all these 'things' whirl round in my head! Alcohol wakes me up!

When the sons were children - I had my Friday night is booze night then and during those Fridays, wrote a book for children, mainly composed in verse - I still have it in the garage! Never did anything with it though....

Maybe a real genius drinks because they are a genius and not the other way round?

Anna :o]

Bothered said...

I do my best work with a glass of wine or two. I just make sure I don't drink too much. I have seen the tragic consequences of alcohol on people I've loved. So I'm very careful with my own drinking.I write my best humor when I'm a little tispy. I guess a little alcohol brings out things I normally don't think about. Your writing is very good.

HyperCRYPTICal said...

Hi Bothered,

Thanks for your comment. Glad I am not alone in being a bit more creative when under the influence!

I love your 'Interests', they brought a great big smile to my face and I chuckled!

Anna :o]

coolblogger said...

As long the creative side doesn't drive, there is no harm in boosting it with the booze...:)
Kool blog u have here...


I dont drink dont want to get into the habit following your blog dont forget to follow mine :D

Major.Mack said...

depends what kind of genius you're trying to acquire. scotch gets me debating and analytical whereas tequila turns me in to a mad genius....well maybe just a mad man.

Manzanita said...

I have no idea what effects alcohol has on people. I guess a lot of people function very well with it. I don't. It throws my timing off when I dance and I've danced all my life so I mostly avoid drinking. I have no objection to anyone drinking as long as they hand the car keys to the non-drinker. Cheers...
Wanna buy a duck

HyperCRYPTICal said...

Thanks for your comments folks.

CB - I don't drive, so okay there!

Living dead - I will follow your blog! :O]

MM - I am sure you're not mad!

Manzanita - If drinking throws your time off, wise not to drink!

Anna :o]