Champagne December: Live Your Best Life.

Pictured: glass of champagne.

Many of you prefer your champagne in flutes, but I love a good vintage coup. You do you.



2017 has aged like a grease fire.

I’ve taken a notable break from documenting my cocktail and culinary adventures over the past year or so. During this time, I’ve experimented with many things, including, most recently, an extended no junk, no booze diet. When it completed, I came to one conclusion.

Champagne is delicious.

Thus, I decided to dedicate an entire month this year to its deliciousness. Its sumptuousness. For 31 days, I will keep my cabinet stocked with champagne. I’ll reach for champagne like I would a goddamned Bud Light. 

Let’s stick a pin in that thought and rewind a little further, to the beginning of 2017, when I idly stumbled across a profile of Queen Elizabeth II’s drinking habits. They included this snippet:

According to Margaret Rhodes, the Queen’s cousin, HM’s alcohol intake never varies. She takes a gin and Dubonnet before lunch, with a slice of lemon and a lot of ice. She will take wine with lunch and a dry Martini and a glass of champagne in the evening.

The Queen is imbibing a glass of champagne before bed, as a matter of routine. A drink whose connotations largely imply decadence and celebration is treated with the same attention as the ritual of brushing one’s teeth. A titillating factoid at first, this anecdote lodged in my mind as I navigated through the ensuing months, resurfacing in a question that refused to sink:

Why am I not living my best life?

I can see that there’s already someone in the audience raising their hand, ready to decry the economic barriers to living like a damn Queen. You’re reading me wrong. Let’s deep dive into this.

Champagne has, over time, built up a well-deserved role as the designated beverage for celebration. For achievement. To congratulate yourself or others when some great hurdle has been vaulted. It is not only champagne we treat this way. Our human minds, seeking order, rationale, and justification, are constantly divvying up life’s pleasures into separate categories: Guilty pleasure. Secret indulgence. Major holiday. Special occasion. Reward.

Thus, for a large portion of the population, champagne has become the drink to toast a small subset of events in our lives. Got the job, a promotion? Champagne. Wedding, anniversary? Champagne. New house? New baby?! Break out the cigars, the champagne! Let’s celebrate!


We create a moment where it becomes acceptable to indulge in a true indulgence, to celebrate and briefly cherish ourselves. Yet on a regular Wednesday, when your only accomplishment was commuting home in rush hour without leaning on your horn and screaming, when you didn’t break down over the latest news, or burn dinner while juggling literally everything else? You crack open your usual cold one. Pour that glass of red, or white. Your usual martini, rum and coke, gin and tonic, whiskey neat.

A typical day, its colors well-washed and watered out, fades to black and white.

Let’s return to the idea of champagne. Champagne is not a drink so much as it’s an idea of celebration, and permission for self-celebration. Of self-care. By reframing champagne, as the Queen has done, as a treat one deserves on a nightly basis, we too can reframe the extraordinary into the ordinary, and as a side effect, raise our personal standards of self love and self care. Of what we as individuals deserve on a regular basis, without rolling over and performing a trick for it. The goal posts for exceptionalism will keep moving. We can ensure that even if no one else concurs, we dish that loving attention upon ourselves.

Champagne December isn’t just champagne. It’s all those other items or actions squirreled away in your mind for special occasions only. That little black dress, or amazing suit you’d shrug into, if you only had a somewhere to go. That recipe, those flowers you pass in the market everyday (but who buys themselves flowers for no reason?), that restaurant. That vinyl record, that playlist. Those heels, that tube of Givenchy Le Rouge lipstick that’s far too outrageous to wear to just work, and yet sits aging in your makeup box. That project you’ve been waiting to tackle, the book you’ve meant to start, the promotion talk you’ve been stalling with your boss.

For every box you haven’t checked because you’re waiting until you’ve accomplished another box, this is your Champagne December.

If you’re still looking for a reason to justify Champagne December, you’ve got one: it’s the end of 2017. You fucking made it. Live your best life.


As always advised on Distracted Hermit, be sure to hermit safely.