Intoxicated Encounters

By Kylei Miller

I want you to think about the safest place in the world.

I’ll give you a minute.


Okay. Are you done? 

Now, I’m no psychic, but I’m going to guess you might have been thinking of someplace like a police station, library, or church. Places where there are rules and parameters. Places where social expectations of behavior keep everyone in line, and therefore keep us safe. Well, usually at least.

But maybe I’ve misjudged you. Perhaps you’re more of an abstract thinker. In that case, the safest place in the world might be your childhood bed, specifically the nights when you were tucked in tightly to prevent any monsters from weaseling in. Or instead, maybe you were thinking about the warm embrace of a lover’s arms: the kind of embrace that makes you feel like no task is too big with them by your side. Or, or, or—maybe your safe place resides within the world of books—your peace intertwined with ink on paper. The safest realities are the ones which do not exist, right?

That’s all fine and dandy. I’m glad you were able to get warm and fuzzies for a little while. But, regardless of how you choose to conceptualize the safest place in the world: you’re wrong (unless you agree with me of course. Then you also get to be right. Isn’t that how the world works?). I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but there is only one place that is the safest in the world, and I happen to know its secrets. 

You will never experience true serenity, joy, or unconditional love until you step foot into a bathroom full of intoxicated girls. Yes friends, you are indeed reading that correctly. The safest place on Earth exists within the grimy walls of your favorite dive bar or college party. Why else would girls flock there in droves? The bathroom is an equalizing space where women come together to unite their forces against stuck zippers, lipstick stained teeth, and cheating ex boyfriends. The women’s bathroom in a bar serves as a communication hub of sorts: women of all backgrounds convening to share vital knowledge on the bar’s state of affairs. Conversations span a wide variety of coherent and incoherent topics such as: the people in the bar who are serious about buying you a drink versus the ones who are creeps that think dangling a cocktail over your head is the best way to sleep with you, analysis on which of Taylor Swift’s exes were the most heinous (looking at you John Mayer and Jake Gyllenhaal), and very valid fears over the state of the world and climate change.

In a way, that is the real magic of drunk bathroom girls. For a brief moment, in our socially awkward and anxious culture, the tension dissipates. The bathroom acts as a sort of liminal space–suspending social constructs and allowing for a genuine moment of connection.

I have never received higher compliments than the ones given to me by the giddy, intoxicated girls stumbling into a bar bathroom. I’ve helped a stranger zip herself back into her dress, checked the back of white jeans for a period stain, and comforted countless crying girls for any reason their tears might escape. In hindsight, I’m not sure I ever even ask their names. But I don’t think names are all that important when one is tapping into the collective drunk-girl-in-a-bathroom consciousness. 

I know what you’re thinking: do people really spend this much time in bathrooms? Is it not meant to be a get in and then get out type of situation? To that I say, time is relative and seemingly stops when one is engaged in the bathroom vortex. But in an instant, as the opening chords of the latest “hot girl anthem” blasts through the speakers, muffled by the bathroom walls, the spell is broken. 

We, the drunk bathroom girls, disperse back to our various corners of the bar, but only until the urge for an uninterrupted community of women arises again, and we reunite. The safest place on earth is one of mutual respect, sisterhood, and quite frankly hilarity. Do not underestimate the legion of drunk girls. It has been drilled into most of our heads since childhood: look out for one another. Hence the creation of the very same buddy system that birthed bathroom congregations in the first place.