Q. “Is it better to try to take back an embarrassing drunk text by writing some sort of apology/excuse the next morning, or is it better to pretend it never happened and/or move to Siberia?”
A. “I think you should leave. I think you should put a hunk of bread and a hunk of cheese in a bandana, tie it to a stick, and start walking. (Important sidenote: why do bread and cheese sound so unreasonably delicious when described as being in “hunks”?) I think you should jump onto a moving train and follow it out west. Do you have overalls? Wear those. At the first stop, jump off the train, rub your hand in some dirt, and then rub that hand on your face and in your hair. Find a piece of hay to chew on. Get back on the train. Share a piece of bread with the tiny orphan boy in the corner of your car. This is really the only way the journey to redemption begins.
Don’t drunk text anyone, ever! I know you’re probably like, “Well, ok! Easier said than done, MOM!” Listen: Just because you’re acting like a child doesn’t mean I’m your mother. Let’s both take a couple of seconds to cool off. OK? OK. Drunk texting is the rightful territory of the very young. Like in The Lion King? You are Scar, and Simba is every 19-year-old. I know you feel all entitled to this land but it is NOT YOURS. If you have reached or passed your twenty-third birthday, you should know better than drunk texting. You are either drinking too much or thinking too little, and it’s probably both. There is always a moment of recognition before you send that 4:00 am, overly capitalized, slur-y text message — ALWAYS. College-age kids can press send and deal with the consequences. Adults can — and must — backspace that mess into extinction. Don’t pretend we don’t have free will.
Now then, if you speak with this person regularly, you should send a second, apologetic text message the next morning. “I drank too much, I’m sorry. That’s embarrassing. I hope I didn’t wake you”: something like that. If you don’t speak with this person much/at all, and he or she hasn’t responded by noon that following day, stay silent. Find a pool of water you can examine your reflection in. Stay there all day.”
- See the other two questions and answers from my Buzzfeed column here.