I was given the opportunity recently to attend a summer study abroad program in Europe. It wasn’t because I have good grades or because it is necessary for me to graduate, but because I made friends with the professor who has run the program for the past 30 years. This is paraphrased, but he basically said, “Johnny, you should apply for this program because I will accept you into it. You can galavant around Vienna for two months, drinking and fucking to your heart’s content.” I befriended him in a satire class two semesters ago, where I wrote things similar to the bullshit I shovel all over you heathens every once in a while, and he thought it was wonderful. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again–it’s all about your connections, not your grades. Whatever.
I’ve been here a solid three days, and I’m already more European than most everybody, because Americans run shit pretty much everywhere. Listen up, chumps: I’m spitting the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
The Ins and Outs of International Flights
1: Understand That All Beverages On International Flights Are Free
International flights are their own special kind of hell. When the devil gets bored of lighting people on fire and stabbing them in the ass with his big, red pitchfork, he puts them on an international flight that gets delayed on the runway. Tickets cost a ton, the flights are purposefully scheduled to all be red eyes, and the person you sit next to will snore really loudly, smell bad, and will somehow make you feel guilty for asking him to move so that you can get up to use the bathroom. At one point, a baby will shit itself and start crying while the parents neglect their smelly, screaming child for a solid 15 minutes. Plus, what’s the deal with airline food?
There is one great thing about international flights, though, which is that international flights serve you free booze whenever you want it. Whiskey and Coke 10 minutes after takeoff? You got it. Glass of sweet white wine with your dinner? Coming right up. A beer just because you’re thirsty? You can totally do that, and then you can get a vodka cranberry to wash down the beer, and then another beer to wash down the vodka. As long as you don’t get belligerent and/or throw up during the flight, then those slender, blonde stewardesses will push you drinks to keep you happy.
2: Loudly Flaunt That You Are American
Speaking of getting belligerent, the main difference between the U.S.A. and other countries known for getting belligerently drunk is that Americans have a knack for getting belligerent in situations that very rarely call for belligerence. The Irish and Canadians get lit up and throw down in socially acceptable places, such as pubs and family gatherings, but Americans will become aggressively drunk in parks, cocktail bars, and while aboard various forms of public transportation–including planes. While the number one rule for traveling is to “act like a local,” on a plane, you don’t need to convince anybody that you are anything other than a blue-blooded patriot who trains eagles to do four-part harmonies of “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
Your first job after getting “appropriately drunk” is to identify foreigners in your immediate vicinity. Is that elderly couple two rows in front of you speaking Dutch? Is there a guy on his BlackBerry who looks like he speaks spotty English? Is the guy sitting next to you wearing a French flag pin on his lapel? If so, then you have officially entered a target rich environment, and American ideals must be upheld. Namely, your freedom of speech–loud, obnoxious speech that Europeans will silently suffer through, because they don’t have the stones to stand up to the big dog. To be fair, you don’t need to do this, but when are you going to have a more captive, opposite-minded audience?
3: Embrace Jet Lag
Just give up trying to sleep on this flight, because you aren’t in those angled first class seats, and passing out drunk doesn’t actually count as sleep. If you pass out, then you will only sputter back to life at the end of the flight, jet lagged and hungover. This is a state you 100 percent do not want to be in when, upon landing, you find yourself knee-deep in socialism.
Jet lag is a part of red eye flights just like whiskey dick is a part of formal. You will need a shit ton of various substances that don’t mix particularly well with alcohol to stay up. Right before you land, make sure you get some coffee in you. Then get some espresso after getting off of the plane. You will land at any point between 5 a.m. and 11 a.m., and you have to make it all the way to 9 p.m. so that you can get back onto somewhat of a normal sleep schedule. Luckily, most Europeans have a rich history in brewing espresso, so load up LMFAO’s “Shots” and mainline as much caffeine as your heart can handle. It will make the inevitable crash so much better, and it will help you forget that the European bed you are sleeping on at your hotel sucks dick.