I drink for a living. Seriously. Did that get your attention? Good, because what I do is not just my profession, it’s also my rebellion song! In a country like ours, where prohibition (an archaic order prevalent in 1920’s America) is still a reality in several states, the CM of a state unofficially known as India’s “party central” is aghast at the thought of women drinking beer and people still equate late night parties with drugs – I barhop frequently, imbibe in all spirits without discrimination and run a social media campaign titled #364Drinks.
It wasn’t an easy path, when I started out my parents – who took their own sweet time to accept it as well – suggested I don’t tell the extended family what I do exactly. To this date, my grandmother chooses to glean over the finer details of my job. “Oh she writes for a popular newspaper”, is what she tells everyone who asks. I don’t mind it at all. I’m just happy that an improper girl from a proper Marwari-Baniya lineage was given the option to make this choice in the first place.
Even today, when I’m at a bar and order a whisky on the rocks while my regular drinking buddy chooses a ruby-hued cocktail, 8 out of 10 times the server places the cocktail glass in front of me and the single malt in front of the boy on the table. I scoff on the inside, smile politely on the outside and correct him – all the while hoping his preconceived notions will evolve.
So for Women’s Day, I urge you to go out and order the most masculine spirit you can find on a menu, click a picture of it and claim #everygirlcan because empowerment is not just about causes, it’s also about our right to do (and drink) what we choose!
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