Before we get to the choose-your-own-adventure portion of the evening, let’s go over the elements common to any successful nocturnal exploit.
Try to say yes more than no. Within the bounds of safety and comfort, that is. Much like the yes, and… rule of improv, assent allows a night’s current to continue unobstructed, whereas “no” brakes your momentum.
Pace your drinking. If you’re stumbling and slurring by 1am, you’ll have already ceded your all-important resolve, and once booze stops (officially) flowing at 4am, ready or not, here comes a hangover. Every bar has a watery, nearly transparent beer on the menu. Often this beer is Mexican. Rarely will you get bombed on it.
Be careful with drugs. So to be clear: legal, illegal -- doesn’t matter, nobody here is advocating taking any drugs, even if they’d help you stay awake. Even nicotine, Dr. Cheng says, “can actually help keep you awake, but I certainly don’t advocate smoking.” If you do happen to partake, consider the following: bring your own, to be surer of what you’re getting. Don’t take depressants (i.e. weed, downers, opiates), a class of drug that slows nervous system function and can make you sleepy. And don’t rely upon any substance. Banking on drugs to facilitate your enjoyment of this night is missing the forest for the trees.
Don’t force it. If you catch yourself falling asleep or you’re simply over it, get outta there. There’s no shame in making what is, on balance, the wise decision to go home and sleep.
Now, to what you actually do in these extra eight hours of darkness! There is, of course, no wrong way to spend your night. But here are some of the right ways: