"Who are you and why are we f**king?"

My trip to Paris was amazing — until the part I can’t remember at all. An exclusive look at “Blackout”

Published June 12, 2015 10:58PM (EDT)

Photos of the author in boozier times.
Photos of the author in boozier times.

I blacked out the first time I got drunk. Before then, I had no idea what a blackout was, and it didn’t seem possible: You could laugh, cry, run up and down the stairs, but the next day, you wouldn’t remember any of it, like a giant eraser had been dragged across your night. Over the following years, I tried to be careful about the way I drank. I hated waking up to that whiplash of fear: What happened last night? But the more central alcohol became to me, the more frequent my blackouts, and the more bizarre.

The story I tell in the following video is the strangest blackout I ever had. It opens my memoir, “Blackout: Remembering the Things I Drank to Forget” (June 23, Grand Central Publishing), which has been named one of Amazon’s top 10 books of June and People Magazine’s top 12 books of summer. Hard to believe the whole thing started on Salon, four and a half years ago, when I wrote this personal essay. But really, it began long before that, in the hours and days following all those blackouts that rattled me to my core. Here is one of them.



By Sarah Hepola

Sarah Hepola is the author of the New York Times bestselling memoir, "Blackout: Remembering the Things I Drank to Forget."

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