I feel so good, I wanna get drunk

Have you ever spent a week eating well, exercising like a Sherpa, drinking your friggin' eight glasses of water a day, stretching, doing all the stuff we're told we're supposed to do, and none of the bad stuff like fried chicken, OxyNorm or durries ... and you feel so fantastic, so damn vibrant and alive ... you just wanna go out and get hammered?

What is that?

I can't be alone in suffering from this compulsion. I know a certain female relative gets it bad. She grows her own veggies and takes long walks in the crystal mountain air with her doggie and feels so bloody healthy and virtuous, when she comes to town she wails into the sav blanc like a sailor on shore leave (in Central Otago).

There's just something about a long cold beer or smoky finger of single malt that improves immeasurably if consumed after hard exercise but, but ... 

I just spent a month off the drink, out of respect for the producers of our pilot for All Men Are Liars TV - so I'd be focused, eh? - and a really funny thing happened.

I felt amazing, I dropped a few kegs but, more than that, life just worked.

I felt ... happy, almost every day, and when I mentioned this on Twitter, someone helpfully reminded me that alcohol is a depressant.

I mean, derr, we all know that, but it's been so long (and I mean years and years and years) since I went a month without boozing, that I didn't realise how significantly even a weekly binge can affect one's brain chemistry.

(Weirdly, during this time, I watched two seasons of the incredible HBO series Boardwalk Empire, which is set during Prohibition in the US, and is as close to booze porn as you'll ever see).


Of course, come the wrap party for our production I drank enough for 10 men and woke up feeling dreadful. I swore off the piss again but, once the hangover was gone ... a few days later, well, what's a cheeky Scotch gonna hurt?

And before I knew it, I was topping myself back up.

Now, I'm not a alcho and I just had my liver tested and the doc said it's like an unspoiled wilderness in there but ... well, I have to say, once I introduced alcohol into the ecosystem once more, I stopped feeling so chipper.

It made me wonder if it could be this simple?

Stop drinking. Be happier. More boring, sure, but happier.

Anyways, the shift in my well-being was so pronounced, I've felt compelled to make a public service announcement and suggest you give Dry July a try or, if you're feeling really frisky, take the pledge at Hello Sunday Morning and see if you can do three months sober.

There's probably plenty of you reading this who are a little more temperate in your drinking than I am, or you're part of that revolting portion of society who just feel SUPER DUPER all the time, even when you're hung over.

If that's you, move along, there's nothing more to read here.

However, for those of you who might suffer from the blues, may I suggest you give abstinence a try and report back with the results.

If you do feel happier after a month, we'll go celebrate on Day 31 ... your shout.

Sam de Brito's latest novel Hello Darkness is in bookstores now. You can follow him on Twitter here. His email address is here.