As I’ve gotten older, my hangovers have changed. It used to be (pre-2007) that I never got hangovers at all. I credited this to my genes and the fact that I was a total badass who remembered to drink a glass of water and take some ibuprofen before bed. Then I turned 25, and my birthday celebration involved a bar that was going out of a business with an owner who was
giving us forcing us to take shot after shot of her tequila stash and ended with a mad dash into my apartment so I could pee like a normal person on the toilet, another friend could pee in the bathtub like some kind of crazy hobo, and Angelica could stand in the doorway hooting with laughter because we were so disgusting. The next morning, I wanted to die. I thought I would die, because any motion at all would cause me to vomit uncontrollably, which is how I ended up watching Rat Race, which is one of the worst movies in the history of film.
After that, I started getting hangovers. Not all the time, just every once in awhile when I drank really heavily and didn’t get enough sleep. They were regular hangovers. Headachy, dry-mouthed, tired, sometimes a little bit nauseous. Nothing spectacular, and nothing some water, Mexican food, and a probably-ulcer-causing-but-whatever-it-worked cocktail of ibuprofen, acetaminophen, and aspirin couldn’t cure. Then I turned 28.
My post-28 hangovers are stealth assholes that not only sneak up on me after I’ve been awake and feeling okay for about an hour, but that completely incapacitate me for at least two hours after that. What I wouldn’t give for some good old fashioned headache, dry mouth, and slight nausea. Now, my hangovers pounce on me without warning – I really have been awake for at least an hour, feeling 100% – and cause such a weird, crippling combination of dizziness, nausea, and anxiety that I can’t do anything except feel awful. I can’t sleep, I can’t read, I can’t watch TV, I can’t even sit quietly by myself. I’m basically reduced to curling up into the fetal position and frantically rocking in the corner. I don’t have any firsthand knowledge of clinical anxiety disorders, but I imagine my post-28 hangovers to be somewhat similar.
My standard period of wakefulness prior to eventual hangover has passed this morning, but that doesn’t mean I’m not nervous. I had some friends over for Hoppin’ John last night, and since it was my house and they are my friends, of course that turned into Hoppin’ John plus booze plus cookies. And brownies, but the cookies were the big deal. I made two and a half sheets and only three are left today, which means I’ll scarf those for breakfast (I’m having breakfast at noon because I’m off today!) and the single leftover container of Hoppin’ John for dinner (although when you eat it the next day, it’s called Skippin’ Jenny). It could be that the stew, rice, greens, and cornbread I consumed last night soaked up the bottle and a half of wine I put down, or it could be the fact that I was able to sleep until I woke up naturally this morning. It could be that a mega asshole of a hangover is still lying in wait, ready to bitchslap me into 2012 with some style.
Carrot Cake Oatmeal Cookies
(served alongside cream cheese frosting last night, which we learned is different from icing because it’s thicker with a butter base, or, according to Graham, “frosting is the stuff you make, icing is the stuff you buy in a can.”)
1 cup carrots, shredded (I first shred an 8-ounce bag of baby carrots in a food processor and then further pulse them into a kind of rough hash consistency, because biting into a cookie and coming away with carrot strings is guh-ROSS)
3/4 cup butter, softened/melted
3/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup packed brown sugar (light or dark, who even cares?)
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla extract (although I once used whiskey when I ran out of vanilla extract and it worked fine)
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground ginger (not required, but I like it)
½ tsp salt teaspoon salt
2 ½ cups rolled oats
1 cup raisins (or whatever’s left in the box, because I wasn’t about to deal with like 2 tablespoons of raisins left in my kitchen)
½ cup chopped walnuts or pecans (I like pecans)
Preheat oven to 350 (or, if you have a haunted oven like ours, to 325 because it’s basically like the temperature of Hell in there no matter what you do).
In one bowl, cream the butter, sugars, vanilla, and eggs together until they resemble a slurry. You’re not supposed to eat this because of raw eggs or something, but it’s really delicious and I do it anyway.
In another bowl, combine dry ingredients (flour, oats, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger). Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix together.
Add shredded carrots, raisins, and pecans. Mix well.
On a greased baking sheet, scoop out dough into whatever size cookies you want. I hate when recipes tell me what size to make my cookies. Get off my ass, middle-aged female user of the Internet.
Bake for probably something like 10 minutes, checking for golden brownness and crispy edges. The cookies should be a little cake-ier, instead of crumbly like regular cookies. To cool them, remove from the cookie sheet and place on parchment paper, folded paper bags, newspaper that isn’t filthy, etc.
Cream cheese frosting recipe here. I can’t do everything for you.