Tuesday, 20 October 2009

The Art of Drinking

Old age and alcohol can be a tricky mix, hangovers become more painful, the recovery period longer and longer, but the need to celebrate to the sound of corks popping, and the desire to curl up on a cold evening with a glass of red, does not diminish. So now I try to think before I drink. The consumption of vast quantities of water is a must and headache pills are popped before bed, a necessity to ward off certain misery in the morning. But, with the passing of the years, like most things that were once fun inebriation holds less and less appeal. However, I did get drunk twice this week, once by accident and once to celebrate a birthday, one resulted in the loss of my reading glasses, the other in buying a Tracey Emin print.

The pale pink lychee martini seemed such a good idea at the time, sat as we were in the winter sunshine on the roof terrace of a fashionable members club. Indeed, what better way to say 'happy birthday', and they were delicious. Then it was off to the Zoo Art Fair, billed as 'a considered introduction the next generation of art professionals' and the Eastend's answer to the Frieze. Now, it just so happened that only last week I was bemoaning the fact that despite going to art college, and being a keen visitor to galleries and exhibitions, I didn't own a piece of original art. I would turn 50 without owning a piece of original art and that was just wrong, and what I'd really like to own was something by Tracey Emin, whom I love, but that could never happen now because it would just by way too expensive. And then I saw it, on the White Cube stand, a Tracey Emin print nestled between an Anthony Gormley and a Gary Hume, we weren't even going to ask the price, safe in the knowledge that whatever it was it would be too much. But, fuelled with the near neat alcohol, we did. '£300' came the reply, at which point I said, 'Really?' and the chap said yes, so I said it again...... and again, and I think he was about to call security when me and my friend whipped out our credit cards and bought one each. Apparently Tracey, top woman that she is, wanted to do something at a price people like me could afford. So, while Damian, Gary, Gavin etc were all on offer with a few extra naughts, there was our Tracey, up for grabs.

So, becareful what you wish, I bought number 50 of 200, a sort of early birthday present to myself and now I carry a postcard of my new purchase, proudly showing it to family and friends. Now if I could just find my glasses.....

Top Tip: Jo Malone's divine bath oils work really well as 'perfume', last for ages and are much cheaper.

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