There was a time when Friday meant nothing to me. University life fucked up my days. Having Saturday classes, Friday was little more than Thursday spelled differently. There were lectures to busy me, reports to be drafted, meetings for thesis dissertation to worry about. Friday nights were non-existent too, even before I stepped into college. I had little to no nightlife growing up, and when people exclaimed “thank god it’s Friday” because they could finally dine, drink, and dance, I wasn’t as enthusiastic. I hated parties. I hated dressing up. I hated going to bars and whatnot. In fact, up to this day, I have never stepped foot inside a club. Not to mention, I hated the idea of going home late: worrying about my parents worrying about me, and wondering if I took the wrong turn in the dark, some thief will come out of an unlit corner, steal my money and phone, then stab me to death. I hated the thought of being splattered all over the tabloids.
“Friday,” I thought to myself, “is just a reminder that I can wake up later than the usual on Saturday.”
Since I started working, however, Friday changed. I still don’t go to clubs, mind you. I still hate getting all worked up about what to wear. But the last working day of the week has transformed from just another day into a real day where can I shout “thank God”, all the gods, the higher ones, the lesser ones! After five days of writing, reporting, communicating, promoting and networking with clients and client markets, I could have a drink and stay a little later than my bed time.
I am not quite proud that I’ve developed the habit of a bottle. However, alcohol has really been quite the easy remedy. I’m not a beer person nor am I a wine connoisseur but I do enjoy the headiness and warmth of hard liquor, brandy easily being my favorite antiseptic. I’m not much for taste, or for brand. If it’s clear, pure vodka I don’t mind. If it’s tequila, then all for the best. Let the bottle disinfect my insides, let the spirits take me away. Let it cleanse my professional sorrows; let it bury my personal agonies deep.
But the true reason why Friday changed isn’t only because as an adult, I finally found my liver more receptive to whiskey or a Stella. Yes, the alcohol is soothing, but no, it isn’t sufficient to transform something as big as a day in a week. It’s because Friday, for all its challenges to sobriety, brings me close to him, to someone I love. And for someone like me who has faced quite the wreckage on accounts of proximity, closeness in all its mélange of meanings, is salvation.
It is after the intoxication, when we are reeling from temporary confusion, and finding ourselves in tremendously high-spirits, that I can finally say the words which never come out on the other four days of the working week. They are never rehearsed. They simply spill. And the silence we preserve on the other days is swallowed by comfortableness around one another on Friday. When not even what I’ve written matters. And not a single worry plants itself in my heart. Friday, is the only day, I can concede to this fleeting triumph, when acceptance is not as elusive as I always fear it to be, and friendship is not as hard to maintain as I’ve always faced in life.