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Thursday, December 23, 2004

Why I don't drink, and other observations

This is why I don't drink: I lack some sort of dehydrogenase protein and drinking even small amounts of alcohol causes my face to flush red and my head to feel like it's going to explode. I derive absolutely no pleasure at all from drinking because of this genetic abberration, and so I generally don't touch the stuff.

While the disadvantages of this affliction are many, there are several advantages that make this condition better than it would otherwise be. First, I am always sober. Now, many people will tell you that being the only sober person at a party full of drunks is boring. Not so! In fact, it is the most entertaining thing in the world. You would be surprised to hear what your drunk colleagues will tell you when they are oblivious to the dangers of their loose lips...muahahahaha. In all seriousness though, drink responsibly because there will always be sober Asians with AFS (Asian Flush Syndrome) who will remeber your follies for posterity.

The second advantage of having AFS is being able to take the moral highground re: the evils of alcohol. However, I must admit that this advantage is essentially nullified be the social stigma attached to holding a Perrier in a room of Stellas, Keats, and Sleemans. It's difficult to mingle when everyone in the room thinks you're a recovering alcoholic and covers their bottles in your presence so as to reduce the temptation (you poor, brave man...which step are you on now?...another Perrier for you?). Next time I work the crowd with my Perrier, I'll lick my lips everytime I see someone with their beer and say something like, "...must be good to drink a nice cool beer like that on a hot day like this...mmmmmmmm...can I lick your bottle when you're done?"

I wish there are more advantages, but I honestly can't think of another one. AFS is a serious affliction that makes life for 50% of Asians in North America more difficult than it has to be. Thankfully, there is ongoing (albeit non-government-approved) research into finding a cure for AFS. I spoke with a Korean pharmacy student over the summer and he told me that in Korean circles, there is currently ongoing (again, this is not approved by the government and even the Mexican FDA is skeptical) trials of using antacids like Pecid-AC to combat the effects of AFS. Initial results seem to indicate that taking two tablets before drinking significantly (statistical correlations are unavailable since there were only 2 Korean subjects in these trials) reduced facial flushing. I am going to adopt a wait-and-see approach to this recent discovery because I don't think it's wise to pop pills before drinking alcohol.

Your Favorite Jerk


At Tuesday, January 18, 2005 7:27:00 PM, Blogger Flami said...

Haha, well.... you saw me at New Year's. ;)

I think my sister was right... there was definitely SOMETHING in those peach wine cooler things! But as you saw, I was prefectly fine the next morning! (actually, at 11 PM even)



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