The life-ruining stages of a hangover

The Tab gives you its very own step-by-step guide to hangovers

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Crippling Thirst

Mouth is like sandpaper. Tongue is a cheese grater. You could drink anything – ANYTHING. You’re overcome with visions of being plunged into a gushing waterfall of the sweetest Evian nectar.

Good God I feel hydrated!

Short-Term Euphoria

Next you examine your sensations: You’re feeling oddly ecstatic. No headache, no nausea, along with an uncontrollable desire to giggle at everything. “I had a really rough night last night – AND YET I FEEL FINE!”

“C-could this be true? Could it be that I’m not hungover?” Mate, you’re still smashed, a disembodied voice calls from the back of your mind. I know it’s hard, but listen to the voice. You are most definitely still drunk.


Mental Table Tennis

Library/bed? Library/bed?

It comes down to the following equation: what are the chances of you dry retching in your lecture for half an hour and then producing a gob of spit that you have to subtly wipe under your desk?

(Obviously, I’m not speaking from personal experience here. Except that I am.)

Not worth it, you tell yourself wisely. I’ll leave off campus just this once.

Forum hill? Faaaaack offffff


Safe in the knowledge that you can be a vegetative lump for the day, it’s time to eat the world.

You confer with your mates over Whatsapp. “Dominoes!” someone suggests. “No, obviously McDonald’s you FUCKING IDIOT,” another replies. Tensions are running high.

After a brief scuffle, someone (usually the smug twat with the car) wins and you all go into town and eat 3,000 calories of processed chicken feet.

Buy one get one free? We’re basically making a profit

Facebook Mortification

You have been tagged in 8 photos – the notification that leaves you queasy to your stomach and your thumbs sweating in their haste to un-tag.

Cue a selection of images where you recognise no-one, are inexplicably wearing a sombrero and, finally, dry-humping a traffic cone.

Can’t. Un-tag. Fast. Enough.


What was I doing between the hours of 11pm to 3am? What’s this bruise on my shoulder?


The tenner – where’s my tenner?


Memories previously stifled by the blanket of residual alcohol are fighting to the surface.

Did I…have a dance-off with myself? Weep gently on a stranger’s shoulder? Threaten a bouncer in Parseltongue?

Don’t fight it. You can pretend it was a dream, but everyone knows it happened.

No. Surely I didn’t chunder in my friend’s…mouth?


Ahhhh, the age-old process of convincing yourself that everyone else was more fucked than you. This involves a lot of reassurance from your loyal band of followers.

Expect a breathless onslaught of phrases like “Pshhh, you weren’t even that bad!” and “No-one even saw you piss yourself!” or “No, you listen to me. Honestly? You were FINE.”

It’s fine. Nobody even saw me. It’s FINE.

Eternal Drinking Ban

The ban – “I’m never drinking again, I swear.” – usually occurs around 7pm the following day when the nausea should really be passing and it hasn’t.

“Why do I keep doing this to myself?” you ask. You start warming to the idea of a life without alcohol. Never again, you say to yourself. Never. Again.

(Until, that is, at that 21st you promised you’d go to. Tomorrow night.)

Fuck you, Echo Falls. Fuck you.

Unbearable Shame

This is when the depression really sets in. All your mates have fucked off back to their rooms to stew in their own self-loathing. It’s just you and your thoughts now.

There’s nothing left to do but crawl into your duvet, let the shame wash over you and pray for the sweet release of death.

Please. Just let me die.

 This article was originally published in The Tab Exeter.