In Mexico and in other parts of the world, the Day of the Dead celebration is a nationally observed holiday where people father to pray and remember friends and family members who have died.
Unlike major American holidays, it’s not a one-day event — Day of the Dead starts on Oct. 31 (better known by us as Halloween) and lasts through Nov. 2 (better known by the majority of the world as All Souls’ Day).
The reason I bring this up here in my introduction to an article that’s almost entirely going to be about the pains the human body feels after consuming larger quantities of alcohol is that A) it’s good to know somebody out there is praying for our souls, dead or alive; and B) it’s serendipitous—all this attention and celebration happens every single year on the same day that most bros are experiencing their worst hang-over in months.
Yep, we’ve all been here before and I think we can all agree, without much hesitation, that preparing yourself for the day after Halloween is almost as important as creating a super funny and super cheap makeshift costume.
I’m talking about clearing all appointments for Nov. 1st — whatever day of the week it happens to fall on. I don’t care if it’s a Wednesday — call it in as a “sick day” two weeks in advance and thank me later.
You won’t want to talk to a single person — friend or foe, emergency or not — let alone do anything substantial like school work or, worse, real-life work in your career.
So, as short notice as it is for this year’s Halloween, try to plan out your Saturday to feature as little as possible. You’re going to need the time — yes, the full day — to recover.
Here are the five day-after “holidays” that require you to close the blinds, turn off the phone and stay in bed for 24 hours nursing that ridiculous hangover:
Thanksgiving isn’t known as a drinking holiday because of Blackout Wednesday, the national binge-drinking holiday in the United States where people return home to see old friends and get carried away doing stupid things that not even the 17-year-old version of themselves would do.
But who cares? The calendar perfectly aligns this diabolical evening with a national holiday the next morning (Thanksgiving, for those of you not paying attention). And if that weren’t enough, the day after that is a holiday, too — well, for most people.
Add in the crazy amounts of food, the non-stop couch-inducing football games, and all the napping that comes from those two intertwined factors and you have the perfect recipe for recovering from a brutal hangover — which I’m sure 95% of the people reading this will have four short weeks from now.
New Year’s Day
Thanksgiving isn’t the only holiday that is a designated recovery day for bros around the country. New Year’s Day follows New Year’s Eve, and for most of us, that’s enough to make January 1st almost non-existent year to year.
Besides the bowl games, there really is no reason to get out of bed. You probably were up until 4 or 5 in the morning and, besides being completely sleep deprived, you were more than likely consuming some sort of hard alcohol when the ball dropped.
Seriously, who chugs a beer when the clock strikes midnight on January 1st? I thought so.
This concoction—lack of sleep and chugging champagne—always equates to a mind-splitting hangover so make sure to buy Advil ahead of time and stock up on bottled water (no need to put it in the fridge; put that baby right beside your bed where it belongs).
The Day After the Super Bowl
This one is an outlier for two reasons (well, technically three): it isn’t a holiday anywhere in the world (at least not yet), it doesn’t follow a “holiday,” and it doesn’t have the universality of the two aforementioned days on this list—and by that I mean not everybody is going to be as super hungover as you are on the day after the Super Bowl (and because it always lands on a Monday, there’s going to be less sympathy from everybody that you encounter that day).
“Really, you got super wasted and blacked out for the Super Bowl? You knew you had work Monday, why did you do that?”
This line of questioning, which bros everywhere would like to avoid at all cost, is followed usually by an irritated stare and an abrupt end of the conversation. Nobody said it would be pretty.
But that’s the main point here — because not everybody is hungover as you, it makes it ten times worse. The only redeeming quality about this day — and why it isn’t higher than the previous two — is that you’re more than likely not consuming as much hard alcohol as you would be gathering with your friends back at your old high school hangout or going out to a club in the city on New Year’s Eve. Rather, it’s football and so beer is the preferred beverage of choice.
That means the hangover won’t be as strong, but that doesn’t mean it won’t be easier to recover from.
This might be surprisingly low for some of you hardos that treat Halloween as if it’s like winning a trip to the Playboy Mansion (full disclosure: it’s not; far from it, actually).
Anyways, personal prejudices aside, Halloween hangovers vary year to year because (unlike Thanksgiving and New Year’s) you don’t get the day off from work and (unlike the Super Bowl) it fluctuates depending on the calendar so you can’t always prepare for it; there’s no consistency.
Of course, us being the smart, alcohol consumers that we are, we’ve found a way to circumvent the calendar’s fickleness: we celebrate Halloween when it’s convenient for us to be hungover the day after. So, for example, if Oct. 31, was a Tuesday, then we’d all be celebrating Halloween on Oct. 27.
Funny how that works out.
The good news is that it’s not alone in its dependency on where it falls on the calendar.
The day after the Fourth of July has become a de facto national holiday (hooray for drinkers everywhere!) at many companies. This means that July 5 does have more consistency than Nov. 1 does in terms of feeling the effects of binge drinking; however, it’s lower on this list for two good reasons: it always takes place in the summer when people are away on vacationing and, because of that fact, it’s always warm and nice out.
I simply can’t compare being hungover on a beautiful July afternoon with what it feels like to be crippled with a hangover on January 1st. There is no comparison.
If you feel shitty after drinking heavily on the Fourth, then go find a pool or lay out in the sun. Both will be more than fine anecdotes for your recovery. So much so that you will be drinking by the time the sun sets later in the day.
That’s right, the best way to beat a hangover: keep drinking.