What if The World is Leading Us in The Wrong Direction
No, I am not talking about politics, but just the smaller aspects of life
Ok, when it comes to politics, that’s one field where there is no ‘What If’, I am sure we are on the wrong track (Leaning right, Turning wrong, Huh!). But don’t worry this article is about the smaller aspects of life like Coffee, Alcohol and all things beautiful
The other day, I had this strange conversation with my husband wherein he wanted to give up on Alcohol (He is very inspired by Virat Kohli — an Indian cricketer who doesn’t drink or smoke). And I didn’t wish for him to give up on drinking, not yet. Because if he indeed does that, what are we going to do with the thousands of pubs around us and the little mini-bar in our home itself?
Well, after all, we all love to have that one vice which we know isn’t any good but we still do, right — Alcohol, Juul, drugs, Red meat (emits methane, if you didn’t know), chips, chocolate, sugar just something that you know is so bad yet so good. Then I asked him, “Why don’t you give up on coffee in that case — coffee is not proven to be good or bad either, so why risk drinking coffee?”
And I know he won’t, so I kept pushing him. But he won’t give up coffee as he is an ardent lover of caffeine, and he gave me my justification — “Babes If it isn’t proven, why should I give up on it?” Point taken milord. And with Alcohol that’s not the case — it has some serious damaging effect on your brain.
The eco-system that promotes this wild culture
That night when I was thinking about alcohol and how we legitimise bad habits in our generation, it struck upon me that it’s not just a trend or a fad. It’s an entire eco-system that promotes the culture. There are umpteen bars and pubs for your entertainment; the Bar menu is bigger than the food menu, Alcohol shops are open for longer than the pharmacy and social gatherings are pointless without drinks, no one has hearty conversations over chamomile tea.
And a quick google search will tell you why alcohol (even when consumed moderately) is not suitable for your health. But you don’t see the Government showing any ads in the public interest on this. Sure there is a ton of content on drunk driving but not in general around drinking. If anything, there is only more promotion for drinking in our Movies, Netflix Series, Festivals, Social media, social gatherings, etc.
So, are we just following a set pattern?
Hate to bring politics into this topic, but when the world is increasingly leaning right, it is difficult to ignore how that has impacted us so far. An authoritarian regime, shrinking borders, growing outrage, collapsing economies and devastating climate crises. Similar to our incorrect voting decision at times, what if the society got it all wrong and we are just following this course like a mindless herd.
What if the society were entirely against alcohol and you were the only one consuming — would you have thought of it similarly as you do now?
What if alcohol is considered as equally harmful as drugs.
And what if instead of alcohol more people consumed an alternative drink — not sure but something on the lines of Kombucha or Sparkling water with lime may be, how would the world be? What if veganism wasn’t just a trend statement, but a normalised lifestyle by many — and eating meat were more of an unusual thing practised by a few. How would it be living in this parallel world?
Unfortunately, we are all in social prisons of this time and era, and no matter how intellectually sharp we might be, we cannot travel against the wind. Now, I don’t deny some great personalities amongst us do, and I have high regard for them, but it is not for everyone. For the rest of us, we like our coffee at 9 am, and Wine at 9 pm, as that suits the norm. But I would still like to keep the possibility of a distinct reality alive — if we never questioned we would never find out.
So what next?
Apart from my questions above, I have come to realise I am not alone in this mindset and I have a lot of others who feel likewise. I love this meetup in Melbourne that is for anyone who wants to socialise without alcohol and so the group name in itself is Melbourne Alcohol-Free Social group. I have joined them on occasions and we have had a good time playing games, eating and snacking and laughing around. There are a few health-conscious sportspersons cum influencers who are treading the right path and we can follow them for more inspiration. Then reading and spreading awareness would take us a long way in creating a parallel world where the scales aren’t tilting towards alcohol alone. Lastly, the Government also restricts public drinking, for example, doesn't allow bar hopping if you are drunk and has some stringent age restrictions in place — Now, whilst this is good, I definitely think there should be more than that the Government can do to reduce alcohol consumption — to begin with start with social awareness campaigns on the harmful effects of drinking so one can consciously make a decision instead of mindlessly following the herd.