Alternatives to partying and getting behind the wheel

Shannon Patrick, Showcase Editor

Tragedy struck late last Wednesday night, when 22-year-old Los Angeles Angels right-handed pitcher Nick Adenhart was killed by a drunk driver. Anyone who has ever lost someone at the hands of a drunk driver knows the pain and loss that is left behind. I personally felt that pain when a friend of mine was killed by a driver who was intoxicated on both alcohol and drugs. I felt a lot of anger toward the driver, who survived the horrible crash.

If you must drink, do it in a situation where you won’t be driving right afterwards. You never know—if you do get into a crash, someone might get killed. That person who dies may just be you.

To avoid drunk driving, make plans with a group of friends that whoever the designated driver is gets one alcoholic drink, then only soda or water for the rest of the evening. An even better idea is just bring people who are under 21; that way they can’t buy alcohol and they would be able to safely drive everyone home.

To me, there is nothing worse than having a friend or family member taken away or injured because of a drunk driver. It’s very upsetting to see someone so young  be killed for such a stupid mistake.

Another solution is to go to Las Vegas and either drink at the hotel you’re staying at, or stay at a hotel in the center of the action and simply walk. The majority of Las Vegas casinos will comp your drinks as you gamble.

 I once enjoyed sitting at the bar in Vegas, getting free drinks while I won $100 at video poker. At the end of my session at the bar, I just gave the bartender a tip and left with my winnings. Not once during my Vegas trip did I get behind the wheel, since I was always in the position where I could just walk to another hotel.

The next time you and some friends decide to go to a bar, make sure that the person who is driving everyone home at the end of the night is not drunk. Be sure that everyone in the group is safe even if other people on the road are making idiotic mistakes when they get behind the wheel. Don’t let one night of fun be the last night you and your group of friends spend together alive.

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