They use the term ‘a perfect storm’ to describe when a number of factors come together to create synergy – where the whole adds up to more than the sum of the parts.
The big game yesterday was my perfect storm. Let’s add up the elements:
• Two teams where I wanted neither to win
• Pre-existing tiredness
• Acuity of the senses
For what was an exciting game from a football perspective – and I am a football junkie – it was not a thrilling personal experience. Note that I am usually overcome with euphoria (or heartbreak) during and after the game. This time, not so much.
Ruminating on the drive home I concluded that emotion was what was missing – the high or low that makes one feel alive. And in our society we use alcohol, often, to amplify feelings.
Now, occasionally people drink to ‘escape’ or decompress, but in a sports setting we are chasing the opposite. Instead of numbness, we get vast outpourings of emotion, for better or worse. In these highly-charged moments, people may be extremely emotionally invested. With inhibitions low due to intoxication, this emotion can lead to very poor choices.
Beyond sport, we use alcohol as a catalyst for celebration, or sometimes, for commiseration – with a tear in our beer, as it were. Either way, we are using alcohol to get to our inner selves and find a fullness of expression.
I didn’t get that yesterday and I felt…stifled. Obviously, I will be looking for a more natural way to ‘feel’ this February, heading to the goal line of the R2BT challenge.