I was recently listening to one of my favorite Drive-By Trucker’s songs, ‘Women Without Whiskey’ and pondered the following line:
If morning's a bitch with open arms
and night's a girl who's gone too far
Whiskey is harder to keep than a woman
and it's half as sweet
but women without whiskey, women without whiskey
Whiskey is hard to beat.
And goddamn if the ol Stroker Ace, Mike Cooley, isn’t on to something there. The whiskey bottle ain’t half as sweet as a woman, but goddamn if it’ll ever walk out the door, either. And I’ve yet to meet a man who hasn’t been driven to the bottle by a woman – without her even picking up the cab fare. So I’m going to do a lil pro’s and con’s on two of life’s sweetest treats.
Let’s start with women. I love ya, girls. There are a whole helluva lotta things women can do that a whiskey bottle can’t – and I’m not just talking about the stuff with your pants off. I think all guys can admit they need a woman around now and then. Dirty jeans and busted knuckles aside, when the nights get long there is no comfort like a good woman. Not to mention, as independent as guys want to be, we can barely get ourselves out the door without a woman telling us to match our belt to our shoes and ask us if we “are really going to wear that shirt?” And of course, when the lights go out there are a few things a woman’s touch can do that make a bottle a poor substitute (not that I’ve tried).
But goddamn if ya don’t have to get all crazy on us, girls. You get mad at us for being jealous, for not being jealous; for not standing up for you, for not letting you stand up for yourself; for not listening and for not ever telling you how we feel. I’ll tell ya how we feel – lost as hell and in need of a drink. And so comes the whiskey. The whiskey bottle is there on the nights you’ve had a few too many and are dancing awful close to another man, the nights you are crying and screaming and it’s “all our fault”, the nights we can’t do anything right, the nights you do us wrong, the nights you walk out the door and the nights you don’t come back. The whiskey bottle is there and only a few shots away from giving me that warm, fuzzy, numb feeling. “What? You’re going home with him? Alright, me and Jack Daniels are in the middle of a conversation anyways.”
But whiskey ain’t perfect. And the bottle can numb the feeling of a bad situation, or plant the seeds to a new one. Sober, these hands are steady as can be, and haven’t done anything I regret – but with that Crown Royal starts tickling my throat and making the corners of my lips curl into a shit grin – well we won’t go there (I SWEAR she was skinny last night). And fact of the matter is that when your eyes creep open that next morning to see who has a pipe clamp on your temples – the whiskey will have left you as well. Waking up with a cold bottle in your hand is no substitute for waking up with a good woman.
So ladies, you win. You might drive us to drink – but you don’t have to give us directions on how to get back. And while guys may never compare to shoes in the minds of women – just realize your monopoly isn’t quite as strong as you’d like to think.
I feel that I should clarify this was written after a 4 hours southern rock / country music bender. Please read with a grain a salt and realizing that I was trying to sound like an old Hank Williams song.