The Bangover: The Morning-After that Needs No Cure

Love and Sex

The Bangover: The Morning-After that Needs No Cure

Illustration: Sushant Ahire

APopular opinion: Mumbai’s monsoons are basically four months of Netflix-and-Chill weather. Waking up slightly sore to your 9 am alarm and the soundtrack of Mumbai’s morning rain splashing against your window while you’re cosily big-spooning bae. And even though round three was at 4 am, you can’t resist bae coyly rubbing herself against you for some good ’ol morning sex. Somewhere amid groggy spooning and drowsy moans, the tempo of your naked symphony picks up.

You look at each other, exhausted, knowing full well that with this kind of start to your day, it’s not going to be a very productive Tuesday. Thus begins your Bangover.

Great sex has a peculiar way of making you forget about your woes. It helps you elide over the image of Maradona’s coke-fuelled trip at the World Cup, pre-election reminders that the mandir will be constructed there only, and the fact that you’re quite possibly your mom’s least favourite child (despite being an only child). All of this is negated by a good bangover. You’re so engrossed in blushing and replaying the events of the past few hours that even Western Expressway’s horrendous rush-hour traffic can’t dent your spirits or afterglow.

This is how a good bangover usually plays out: Your ride to work turns into a Moods condom commercial. Even the umpteen Facebook statuses you come across that all read “Omgee rains #MonsoonMasti petrichod ke pakodey is bae <3 floods keechad diseases yaas!” can’t harsh your vibe. All you can think about are the intricacies of your partner’s naked body. You cannot stop sniffing your arms, which, despite your morning shower, still smell of them.

For some reason, everything around you becomes sexual. You wonder how the furry seat-cover on the Uber would feel against their bare skin. You wonder why mirror sex hasn’t been a part of your bedroom playbook all along. You trace your fingers across your neck, feeling the soreness from that complex magic mountain position you tried the previous night. Your Uber driver gives you a curious stare but you can’t care less.

Unproductivity and genital soreness aside, a bangover may also cause a pronounced rise in confidence.

As with any new ill-understood concept, literature around the bangover is pretty thin. But a 2011 Glamour magazine article does pose the pertinent question, “Have You Ever Had a Bangover?” The article attempts to explain the phenomenon: “According to the world of Franklin & Bash, a bangover occurs after a particularly fabulous night of hooking up. A person spends the next day walking around in a sex fog, still mooning over the previous night’s events. It’s the same concept as a hangover, only it’s not accompanied by a headache and an upset stomach. A bangover is essentially a sexy afterglow that lasts all night and into the next day.”

For clarity, working with a bangover is quite the opposite of working with a hangover. It doesn’t entail dehydration, nausea or the crippling urge to submerge your head in a bucket of iced water. Instead, you find yourself daydreaming in the middle of meetings or smiling stupidly at sexts from your equally unproductive bae. Someone at work might even point out the perpetual post-coital glow on your face. And no amount of buttoning up or concealing seems to hide your hickeys from sly gazes. Your peskiest coworkers may even try goading you into sharing the spicy deets – but you refuse to kiss and tell because halo frnds, shy feelo.

Unproductivity and genital soreness aside, a bangover may also cause a pronounced rise in confidence. You will throw around frivolous statements like, “Sure, I’ll give it to you two days before the agreed-upon deadline” and “Of course you can pull off a fuchsia shirt, Aakash!” This happens because your bangover-ed brain is so hopped up on dopamine, it morphs your personality into a mix of Donald Trump and DJ Khaled: high on self-confidence but only spewing nonsensical drivel. And the major key entails you just shutting the hell up.

After an entire day of being chirpier than your usual self and accepting work you have no intention of doing, your bangover may begin to subside. At this point, your life begins to feel mundane and meaningless again.

On your ride home, you realise you have a long week ahead and should probably prioritise work over play. “Alcohol and sex-fuelled benders should be a weekend thing,” you tell yourself, swearing to not initiate contact with bae until Friday night. But then an hour later, bae texts you the peach/baingan emoji followed by a question mark.

“This weather’s not going to last forever,” you tell yourself the following morning, waking up in the exact same position as the night before. “You know, it’s called hump day for a reason”, bae says, while rubbing themselves against you. Effectively killing your hopes of a hickey-free Wednesday.