[NetBehaviour] On Drinking - Guy Debord...

marc marc.garrett at furtherfield.org
Mon Jul 25 16:52:40 CEST 2005

*On Drinking

Guy Debord*

After the circumstances that I have just recalled, it is no doubt the 
quickly acquired habit of drinking that has marked my entire life. 
Wines, spirits and beers: the moments when some of them became essential 
and the moments when they returned have traced out the main course and 
meanders of days, weeks and years. Two or three other passions, which I 
will talk about, have almost continually taken up a lot of space in this 
life. But drinking has been the most constant and the most present. 
Among the small number of things that I have liked and known how to do 
well, what I have assuredly known how to do best is drink. Even though I 
have read a lot, I have drunk even more. I have written much less than 
most people who write; but I have drunk much more than most people who 
drink. I can count myself among those of whom Baltasar Gracian, thinking 
about an elite distinguishable only among the Germans - but here very 
unfair, to the detriment of the French, as I think I have shown - could 
say: 'There are those who have got drunk only once, but it has lasted 
them a lifetime.'

Furthermore, I am a little surprised - I who have had to read so often 
the most extravagant calumnies or unjust criticisms of myself - to see 
that a total of thirty years or more have passed without some malcontent 
ever instancing my drunkenness as an argument, at least implicitly, 
against my scandalous ideas - with the one, belated exception of a piece 
by some drug addicts in England who revealed around 1980 that I was 
destroyed by alcohol and had thus ceased to be harmful. I never dreamed 
for an instant of hiding this perhaps questionable side of my 
personality, and it was there beyond doubt for all those who met me more 
than once or twice. I can even note that it has sufficed me on each 
occasion a rather few days in order to be highly regarded, in Venice as 
in Cadiz, and in Hamburg as in Lisbon, by the people I have met only by 
frequenting certain cafes.

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