“I’m not the same when I’m drunk” is something we’ve all heard people say, or perhaps even claimed ourselves. Some even believe they have different “drunk personalities”, as if a bottle of wine and 4 shots can suddenly turn you into James McAvoy in Split. But whilst alcohol can certainly alter you, it doesn’t turn you into something you aren’t: it simply limits your inhibitions.
With that in mind, it is always worth keeping an eye on people’s drunk behaviour. Inebriation can expose some pretty ugly personality traits. Now, after years of intense social observance and (un)professional psychological analysis, I am proud to present ‘The Definitive Guide to the Ten Types of Drunk People’. Like it or not, we are all one of the characters on this list, and they reveal more about ourselves than we would like to admit.
1) THE POLITICIAN
This can be split into two further categories:
- The Electioneer, almost always male and either i) a leftist (usually found shouting at some poor girl in the corner about Stalinism; the phrase “you’ve got to break some eggs to make an omelette” is probably being employed) or ii) the rightist (usually found shouting at some poor girl in the corner about Jordan Peterson; “if you actually listened to him you would find he has some really salient points. I’m not racist,” they add hastily with a defensive scowl).
- The Doom-Bringer, who accuses people of not recycling their beer bottles (“do you KNOW that dolphins eat them?? SO irresponsible”) and will later sit on the floor crying about the awful prospect of Brexit, climate change and a second Trump administration to anyone within hearing distance.
2) THE ATHLETE
If there is a wall, they will try to jump it. “Race me!” The Athlete screams. “Race me to the end of the street! I was county-level cross country in year 4!” No one will.
3) THE MAGIC MIKE AUDITIONEE
“Who wants to see me do the WAP dance?” they yell. No one says yes, but they will exhibit regardless. This can be an outgoing person who enjoys showing off, but is often the quiet ones of the group who go surprisingly but determinedly mental on the dancefloor. Best to give them a 2 metre exclusion zone, corona notwithstanding, so you don’t get hit in the face by a flying limb.
4) THE EMOTIONAL ONE
Again, two subcategories:
a) People who claim they’re fine, but really aren’t. “I’m fine,” they sob through the tears as they sit curled up in the bath with the door locked. “Honestly – I’M FINE.” If you offer them a shoulder to cry on, congratulations – you have just become their therapist for the next 3 hours.
b) The “I just love you guys so much” people. “I just love you guys so much!” they wail. You accept their affectionate hugs, not wanting to mention you just met five minutes ago in the Fever toilets.
5) THE ACTUALLY HAPPY ONE
The only person who genuinely seems to be enjoying themselves, has a great crowd of mates, wicked dance moves and sings along to every song. A species close to extinction, rarely seen in the wild.
6) THE “YOU WANT TO SAY THAT AGAIN, PAL?!”
Avoid this person at all costs, as one wrong misstep and they could be threatening you with their year 6 judo qualifications one moment, and rugby tackling you to the ground outside the taxi rank the next. Aggression is their middle name, and poorly fought midnight scraps the game.
7) THE EARLY NIGHTER
The drinks start at 9, the yawning begins at 10. By the time you’ve hit the town, they’re already longingly thinking of their cosy bed. “If I could just find a quiet spot…” they mumble, fumbling their way through the crowd so they can lay down in the corner with their coat as a pillow. This is the person who is now grateful that the pubs close at 10. “Finally, a good night’s sleep!” they cheer, teary with relief.
8) THE FLIRTY ONE
The human embodiment of Joey’s “How you doin?” line. They will hit on anyone; be it fellow students, wine mums, underage sixth formers or the pub staff. “How you doin?”, they smirk. “That’ll be four-fifty please,” says the weary bartender.
9) THE DJ
Once they take over the music queue, there’s no getting it back. Hope you like Tame Impala and long, mansplaining monologues on the genius of Matty Healy.
10) THE OBSERVER
Standing in the corner, smugly detached from the spiralling messes around them, The Observer simply watches, sipping their drink and offering increasingly slurred commentary on the situation around them in the manner of an incomprehensible David Attenborough. “Why do we bother making Planet Earth documentaries,” they muse with a bleary gaze at the technicolour dancefloor. “When the real planet has been right here all along?” These allegedly profound thoughts will later be remembered with embarrassed horror.
In case this article hasn’t been proof enough, this is the type of drunk I am. Now that you’ve figured out which one you are, don’t recoil or shy away from the answer – use it to your advantage.
If you’re The Early Nighter, why not bring one of those travel neck pillows next time you go to the pub. If you’re The Magic Mike Auditionee, consider packing an ice pack in your bag for all those sprained ankles you will inevitably acquire from jumping around to ‘Mr Brightside’. And if you’re The DJ that loves to meddle with everyone else’s song requests, please, please, please – don’t.