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Going dry

Had this flash up tonight when doing my daily inventory:

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Both myself and the long haired OC have stopped drinking during the week. We are saving money at last.

I bought a few beers for the weekend, but didn't kick the arse out of it. Its quite nice just looking forwards to having 3 or 4 beers on a Friday evening, rather than doing it every night.
 
Very well done mate, keep going. I bet when you were on the grog you'd have viewed this as an absolute impossibility - and here you are!!!

It is sometimes rather mind boggling! Just a case of putting a number of days together, just glad at the current moment I have the choice not to drink. I've found myself a couple of times over the last week shaking my head in wonderment & thinking, "f*ck me, I'm sober!"
 
Just worked out, that today is day 133, and I reckon I've saved £1995.00 so far.
I worked it out.
Bottle of wine for her £7.
Beers for me £6.

£51 Monday to Thursday.

The weekend.
Beers at least £20, bottle of Gin and a bottle of Rum minimum of 40 quid. Plus mixers, let's say a tenner.

70quid.
So £70 +£51 =£121 a week on booze alone.
We have now budgeted to live on £250 a week for Everything. No booze between Monday and Thursday, 1 bottle of spirits, she has two bottles of wine for the weekend and I buy 12 beers. This week we came in at £25 under our budget.

Eta. All the money we save is going to be going into a savings account. I'm going to clear the credit card and some other small debts. Once that is done we've calculated that we can potentially save over £1200 a month.
 
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Tried a new alcohol free beer today: Lucky Saint. Slightly disappointed with the flavour and I'd put it in tier 2. Drinkable, but wouldn't choose to serve it...
 

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Fishsoxs

Old-Salt
I have tried the Ghost Ship by I think Samuel Adams and did not enjoy it. Personally out of the few non alcoholic beers I've tried I think that the Punk AF by Brew Dog is the better one.
 
I tried Old Speckled Hen 0.5% this evening and it was quite palatable. Not the best but needs must when the devil (or in this case the Devex) drives.
 
Well, I genuinely thought I was never going to post this. Two 0.5% beers that I can't tell from full strength! Quite extraordinary.

Drum roll for:

Big Drop Brewing Co for their Pine Trail pale ale and Galactic milk stout.

Right now I honestly don't see myself buying or serving anything else (unless to try).
 
Well, I made it:

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Now to keep my spiritual condition such that I add another day to the total...

An interesting contrast to yesterday in 2018. Then I collected a bike I’d had fixed after it had sat for 12 years in my parents’ garage; struggled to ride if a couple of miles home; and crashed twice ending up in a hedge once; & ended up breaking one of the bits that had been mended.

Yesterday I could do this:

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Not the longest of rides, & pretty slow because of hills (I’m still too fat for them) & stopping for navigation & photos. However two years ago even trying wouldn’t have been an option...
 
Well, I made it:

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Now to keep my spiritual condition such that I add another day to the total...

An interesting contrast to yesterday in 2018. Then I collected a bike I’d had fixed after it had sat for 12 years in my parents’ garage; struggled to ride if a couple of miles home; and crashed twice ending up in a hedge once; & ended up breaking one of the bits that had been mended.

Yesterday I could do this:

View attachment 497539View attachment 497538

Not the longest of rides, & pretty slow because of hills (I’m still too fat for them) & stopping for navigation & photos. However two years ago even trying wouldn’t have been an option...
Right.
No going out on the piss to celebrate!

All joking aside, seriously well done mate.
From what you have posted on here, you're definitely on the way up. Good skills.
 
Right.
No going out on the piss to celebrate!

All joking aside, seriously well done mate.
From what you have posted on here, you're definitely on the way up. Good skills.

Cheers! I’ve heard of people who did drink to celebrate a “birthday” or thought that a certain amount of time off the sauce meant they were cured. It doesn’t tend to end well.

I celebrated with a Stand Up Paddleboarding lesson. Not something I’d have wanted to do when wobbly ;)
 

DieHard

LE
Book Reviewer
Giving up the drink. Who’s done it?

Like most on here I’m a borderline alcoholic as per the NHS’s official definition. I joined the mob just after my 16th birthday and was encouraged to get smashed pretty much every night. Getting pissed was as much a part of Navy life as eating. Things obviously progressed from there.

By the age of 18, I’d gained a reputation as someone with solid pub fitness. I fondly recall my cousin being amazed when we went out one night and I sank 15 pints quite happily. I had a reputation to live upto and I found myself drinking more and more almost as a challenge to impress my civvy mates.

Of course there were some spectacular **** ups; various opportunities with hot girls ruined because I was smashed, many mattresses rendered unserviceable and a new car wrapped round an oak tree.

The problem is there was no shame in doing this. The lads on my ship found it funny and I just joined the growing ranks of people onboard who’d been done for drink driving or other alcohol related offences. It was pretty much expected. There was an alcohol related fall from grace almost every night down the mess.

By the time I’d left the RN in my early twenties I’d developed a solid habit of getting smashed whenever the opportunity presented itself. I’d convinced myself that I wasn’t an alcoholic because I didn’t drink every day and I wasn’t addicted to booze as such. There are proper full blown alcoholics in my family and I was not like them, booze didn’t control my life, I didn’t have to have it, there was no physical dependence on it. It was just an activity that I enjoyed, but I enjoyed it a lot. I was the classic binge drinker, working through the week then going to parties or the pub at weekends and getting absolutely blotto.

Civvy street in the UK was just as bad as the mob. I found drinking to be such a normal part of society, in this country you need booze to have fun. Or so I thought. The idea of going to a wedding and not getting smashed was a completely alien concept to me. Weekends are for getting drunk.

I’d go out for a few drinks but it would always turn into a full blown, get home at 4am, sesh. It never occurred to me that I was smashing in twice as much as my mates on a typical night out, but I was.

I dabbled with drugs, all my mates were doing them, but this was short lived. I had some fun and don’t regret it but I found it all a bit seedy. Sneaking around, doing something illegal wasn’t really for me and the paranoia of getting caught worried me. A couple of spectacularly bad come downs also put paid to any long term aspirations I may have had as a casual cocaine or ecstasy user.

So back to the booze. I just drank more and as I started to make more money, I started to drink a better class of booze. Champagne, single malt whisky and premium German lagers. I’d convinced myself that more expensive booze was better for me and would give me less of a hangover. Utter bollox of course but I wasn’t drinking cider or cheap lager anymore.

Marriage and kids came and I found myself going out less. There were less parties, less weekend trips to the pub. My drinking became an evening hobby, wine with dinner, a whisky before bed. Of course wine with dinner invariably meant an entire bottle and whisky before bed meant knocking myself out. I built a bar in my house, it’s what people with big country houses do don’t they?

Again I never thought I had a drink problem. Everyone has wine with dinner right? It’s normal to have a few beers in front of a movie on a Friday night isn’t it? It just became a ritual. I even smashed in dry January a couple of times just to prove that I wasn’t an alcoholic.

And so to the present.

My job means I live away from home during the week. I’ve got a swanky harbourside bachelor pad where I crash 3 nights a week by myself. Best of both worlds, spend a 3 day weekend on the farm with the wife and smalls, doing the Lord of the Manor / family thing. Get a bit of respite during the week and sit in my pants watching Netflix, eating steak and drinking beer.

Lots of beer.

Again it just became a ritual, get home from work, crack open a few cans or a bottle of wine to relax.

At this point I should mention that I’ve always suffered from really bad hangovers. I mean really really ******* bad. The sort of hangover where I’d gladly shoot myself in the head to alleviate the headache, if only I could drag myself to the gun cabinet. It never stopped me though. I was a hard drinking sailor, I can always man up and fight through it.

Of course some of you will note that I was diagnosed with a brain tumour a couple of years back. No doubt this didn’t help the situation. When you’re hungover your brain swells up creating pressure inside your skull. Now imagine there is a golf ball in there too. Anyway the brain tumour is gone (save for 5% they couldn’t scoop out) but the hangovers remain.

And it was a hangover that brought me to where I am now.

After another weekend sesh (3 bottles of wine in the hot tub), I woke up the following day to find a scene of utter carnage, purple vomit blocking the sink and a headache that would kill a member of the RAF. It was finally time to do something about this shit. No half measures, cutting down wasn’t going to work. I can’t go out and have a couple of drinks. It’s all or nothing. Once I’ve got the taste for it I need to just keep drinking.

And so just like that I gave up booze. Forever.

That was in May, it’s nearly August.

Of course I’ve had a few cravings for a drink, but never to the extent where I’ve actually considered having one. Non alcoholic beer has been a god send. Ive been out on drinking sesh’s with the lads and just drank Becks blue or something similar. Of course I don’t get pissed but I’m still able to have fun and I can kind of con myself into thinking I’m getting pissed because it tastes the same. Also I’m not that weirdo with a coke. People still think I’m drinking beer. Above all though, the smugness of knowing I won’t be hungover the following day makes up for the lack of drunkenness. The important thing is my social life has not been affected which was my biggest worry.

The hardest part has been trying to explain to people that I don’t drink. I find myself having to justify to people why I’m not getting pissed. Again, British culture in full swing. It seems that every leisure activity in the UK involves drinking. However my trump card is a giant zip like scar on the back of my head from the brain surgery. I just tell people I can’t drink because of the surgery. It’s partly true, I get worse hangovers and headaches now. Once they see that they don’t ask anymore questions.

I’ve replaced my midweek evening drinking with the gym. I’ve lost a stone, I’m saving a good few hundred quid a month. Interestingly my missus says I’ve stopped snoring. I have more energy and I find myself more motivated to go out exploring. I got on my pushbike for the first time in years, I’m playing the guitar again. Things I couldn’t really be arsed with before because they got in the way of drinking.

So who else is teetotal? Let’s hear your stories and tips for living a booze free life. Maybe we can encourage some other people to jump on this wagon and most importantly, help each other stay on it.
Whilst not quite teetotal so far this year I have downed a bottle of desperados and had my yearly intake of spirits in a bottle of woods rum and next year's intake in a bottle of stay and nephew rum. Both Xmas presents, since cutting back from an average 3 pints a night to zero I feel ok and don't even miss it, people at reunions don't take the piss either because we're all getting to the stage where past actions and lifestyles are catching up. I do however have a massive problem with prescription pain killers is, oxycodone. I've reduced from an elephant knocking out dose of 400mg daily 3 years ago to 50mg today. Now is the hard part, Ive changed GP twice due to lack of help and done reductions myself, I had a triple bypass a few months ago and apart from two days in itu on iv meds I carried on with my dose, and it still helped me. My problem is I abuse the medicine by snorting it and because things have been stressful I've been spanking my supply, I asked for it weekly to stop this which helped but now that's going after 4 days, I've asked for help by changing to subutex but got nowhere.
However I've found a place that can help called path 2 recovery, it will take a few weeks to be having a medical and changing and dropping subutex doses I'm aiming for, but it will help.

Back to alcohol, one of my son's had a promising football career pulled from him last month with his knee getting fckd, now he is downing 8 cans a night with spirits, which have now been locked away. After a long chat he has got to a couple of beers a day. I asked did he like waking up at 14:00 feeling like shit which seems to have helped
 
Couple more alchohol free beers to add to the list. One hit, one miss:
Tiny rebel hits the top third. Very pleasant.

Doom bar zero tastes like one of those continental malt drinks (see also St Peter's Without). Didn't taste anything like a pale ale. Can't recommend.
 

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Heartbreaklane

War Hero
More and more alcohol free and 0.5% (which is virtually alcohol free) beers cropping up all the time.

Some of my recent faves. These were all off the shelf in Morrisons.

All are good enough to be indistinguishable from a 4 - 5% full fat beer.
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Have tried the Brewdog Hazy AF, very nice agree. You still on the wagon now you are mixing it with matelots again? How's that work out on runs ashore?
 

Fishsoxs

Old-Salt
Anyone here tried any of the Carlsberg Nordic alcohol free (well 0.5%), or the Tuborg Nul pilsner (0.0%)? Not sure if they're available outside of Denmark yet?
Not sure if anyone else has replied but yes I've tried the Carlsberg Nordic and thought it was very nice. It was in my local Tesco who at the moment have the better choice for alcohol free.
 

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