Thanksgiving Eve. Black Wednesday. Whatever you call it, the night before Thanksgiving happens to be one of the biggest bar nights of the year. Across the country, workers everywhere have the pleasure of a holiday on the last Thursday in November, so they take advantage by hitting the bars with friends and family beforehand. And, while this tradition certainly has its high points, it has lots of drawbacks, too. In fact, I believe that the cons far outweigh the pros on this unofficial drinking holiday. That’s why I suggest you spend your Thanksgiving Eve in this year — and here are eight reasons why.
1. It’s a waste of money.
As drinks start flowing, our inhibitions start disappearing. No matter how hard you’ve budgeted your Thanksgiving weekend spending, enough alcohol could cause you to blow your budget buying shots, rounds of drinks or even enough to keep yourself sated all night long. It’s okay for this to happen from time to time, of course, but Thanksgiving probably isn’t the best time to be shelling out an unexpected sum of money on booze. With the holidays right around the corner, you’re better off pocketing the money and spending it on your gift list instead. You’ll be so happy when you don’t have to penny-pinch down the road.
2. It might inhibit your eating.
Yes, we give thanks on Thanksgiving, but we also eat. A lot. Many people believe that going out on Black Wednesday only serves to increase their appetites, and it’s true that drinking can cause us to overeat. However, you also run the risk of giving yourself a hangover that’s too much to overcome by the time everyone sits down to feast. Feelings of nausea or dizziness would likely prevent you from eating anything, let alone enjoying the meal for which you’ve waited all year.
3. You never know who you’ll run into.
Almost everyone goes home for the holidays. Your hometown is likely still the hometown of some of your best friends from school, but it’s also still the hometown of people you’ve been effectively avoiding since graduation. And, in most hometowns, there are only a handful of bars to choose from when planning an evening on the town. That means that you’re going to see familiar faces, and they might include those of your exes or ex-best buddies. It’s better to avoid the situation than try fumbling through an awkward, alcohol-infused conversation.
4. It will make you grumpy.
After a night of drinking, most of us do not have any intentions of socializing. On Thanksgiving, though, you can’t simply park it in front of your TV for a Netflix marathon: you have to converse with family members and friends all day long. A hangover can cause you to feel irritable, anxious, tired and depressed, which will do nothing to fuel these conversations. If you say “no” to Thanksgiving Eve, though, you will be nothing short of a joy to be around when you’re around the dinner table.
5. The roads aren’t safe.
Unless you’re from a well-connected city with loads of public transit options, a big night for drinking means that a number of people will get behind the wheel despite being unfit to do so. Even if you’re careful, even if you call a taxi or designate a driver, you could still be at risk for an accident with someone who has made the selfish decision to drive under the influence. Holidays and days off from work tend to be more dangerous for drivers, too, so avoid the risk altogether by staying in on Wednesday night.
6. Family time makes you feel great.
Thanksgiving Eve likely reunites you with some friends from your hometown, but it also brings the whole family home, and the benefits of family time are seemingly endless. For example, a simple conversation with your mom can help you lower your stress levels. Sisters make us feel less lonely and happier. You’re even more likely to make good decisions if you maintain a strong bond with your dad. Foster these relationships on the night before Thanksgiving as well as the holiday itself.
7. It will ruin your Thanksgiving glass of wine.
Holidays often inspire us to bust out that fancy bottle of wine or high-end liquor that’s been collecting dust for years. On the other hand, hangovers inspire us to refuse alcohol, as the mere smell of it brings back too many memories of shots taken the night before. By staying in, you’re committing to indulging yourself on one day instead of two. And, on Thanksgiving, you won’t want to have to say “no” to any of the food or drink that’s offered to you. You’ll be happy you waited to sip on the good stuff.
8. You won’t regret it the next day.
There are a million ways that alcohol can cause you to wake up the next morning with regrets. We’ve touched on some — awkward conversations, overspending, a hangover to end all hangovers — but there are many, many more. Thanksgiving is a holiday meant for pure, unadulterated enjoyment of food and family. You absolutely will not regret embarking on the big day with a clear mind, empty stomach and healthy liver.