DrinkIf You’re Going Out, You Only Need One Totally Unnecessary Drink
Acquaint yourself with the Tuddy (Totally Unnecessary Drink… -dy!), the happy medium between going home too early and staying out too late.
Among life's most satisfying pleasures is convincing friends to get one more drink after a long night out, especially if it is just one more drink. This way you avoid any next-day anxiety about being an enabler, or being enabled, or–and this is a very real fear, people–being stuck in an enabling, codependent friendship that only ends with a personal reenactment of Leaving Las Vegas. Unless you're tight with Nicolas Cage. In which case, send pics!
Sticking to one last drink is incredibly difficult, given how easy it is to get one last drink five times. It's late. You're having fun. Your decision-making skills have regressed to what I call Confident Trump. There are unforeseen consequences to getting so many last drinks, like waking up fifteen subway stops too late. (Coney Island sunrises don’t live up to the hype.)
If you're going for one last drink, you need group buy-in, and nothing gets group buy-in like an acronym. Just ask any management consultant.
Hence the T.U.D., or the Totally Unnecessary Drink.
Pronounced “Tuddy,” it's the one-word question you ask just as everyone has that time-to-head-home look in their eyes, a.k.a. Wistful HBO Go & Pizza eyes. If you go, "Tuddy?" and your friends respond in the affirmative, congrats! You have real friends. If they respond in the negative, just do your best impression of Scarface from Half Baked. Exceptions are only allowed for friends performing surgery in the morning.
You're probably reading this while sober, where much of the Tuddy's particular brilliance is lost. I direct you to the acronym itself. At 1 AM, anything with the words "unnecessary" and "drink" tends to receive immediate approval. The Tuddy means the night's not yet over. In fact you might only now be entering that magic time when things start to get weird and/or memorable, when you start asking questions like, "Why do lemons have seeds and limes don't?"
The Tuddy also solves the issue of going home too early or staying out too late. It’s a happy medium, the Goldilocks solution if Goldilocks swapped porridge for beer. A curious thing happens when your friends agree to just one more drink. You savor that last one, really tasting the booze and being a little more in the present–like a firing-squad cigarette, without the blindfold. Or the shooting.
So we all understand the value of the Tuddy, but beverage selection is important. Here are the drinks to avoid:
The sophisticated person's method of drinking shots in sophisticated company, a martini weakens those aforementioned decision-making skills to the precise point at which another martini sounds like a great idea. This is anathema to the whole spirit of the Tuddy.
Pilsners and Light Beers
To use a word invented by marketers, they're just too drinkable. You'll be holding an empty glass while your friends are halfway into theirs.
This is okay as long as you’re being consistent. Nobody has ever said, "It was a good idea to switch to bordeaux after all those IPAs," just as nobody's ever said, "It was a good idea to invite my ex to the wedding."
After too much research, I’ve found the best Tuddy is bourbon, two rocks. Jack Daniel's or Old Overholt works nicely, as your palate's too worn out to appreciate that Macallan 12-Year. (Unless Nic Cage is buying.) Also every bar in the world has a mid-shelf bourbon.
One last reason for the Tuddy: it attracts people. You have that One Last Drink energy, which is similar to New in Town energy and Stole Josh's Corporate AmEx energy. I once explained the term to an advertising guy who'd just completed a cross-country motorcycle trip. We were drinking at the superb Central Provisions in Portland, Maine. He paid his tab, grabbed his helmet and some European woman he'd just met, and then invited me to get a Tuddy at the next bar. I held up my drink and said, “Ah, but this is my Tuddy. You go enjoy yours.”