Let's face it: Celebrating the Fourth of July gets rowdy. It's undoubtedly one of the most riveting days of the year. But booze, fireworks and other quirky traditions don't exactly mix.
This year, when you and your friends are drunkenly singing the "Star Spangled Banner" and playing rounds of corn hole, have fun, but not too much.
Here are seven regrettable choices that many people make on the Fourth of July.
1. Eat foods that have been out all day
With all of the hoopla going on, it can be hard to remember when those hotdogs were last served. Was it 1 p.m. or 4 p.m. that your best friend took them out of the fridge? Don't make the silly mistake of wolfing down a few grilled meats that have been lying around all afternoon. Or else you might run the risk of getting food poisoning.
"Unless you've been wanting a portrait of Uncle Sam on your bicep, save the spontaneous tattoo appointment."
2. Drink too much beer and not enough water
Bring a water bottle to the day's festivities because your host might not be handing out water bottles, just mostly beer. While this is never really a bad thing, you shouldn't go without water. Hot weather plus a few mixed drinks yields dehydration.
3. Get a patriotic tattoo
Unless you've been planning on getting a portrait of Uncle Sam on your bicep, save the spontaneous tattoo appointment for a less exhilarating day. The adrenaline of celebrating a holiday combined with peer pressure from your friends might be the perfect storm to push you to actually get a tattoo after a few drinks.
4. Wear an American flag as a dress
When dressing for the event, opt for a fashion choice that won't flop. Before you pull the flag from your front yard, consider a more fashion-forward option. Showing up with a flag wrapped around you isn't just offensive, but it might make you look out of place if the party is for a mixture of people, for example your friend's extended relatives.
5. Buy fireworks from your friends
Wish you'd remembered to buy your own fireworks this year? It's better to stick it out until the subsequent Fourth of July for a purchase. According to Fireworks Safety, unless you obtain your fireworks from a store, there is no way of knowing if they're legal. This puts you at the risk of getting in trouble, but it also puts you in harm's way. Black market fireworks may be dangerous to light or be around, as they aren't regulated.
6. Using electronics at a pool party
Everyone knows that a good playlist is the Holy Grail of a successful party. That's not the problem. Using your iPhone and other devices around your pool or on the beach is where the risk lies. Before the party starts, place your devices in a waterproof container or make arrangements so that they're far away from any water.
7. Not playing enough Lee Greenwood
If you have a modicum of respect for this nation, then you will play Lee Greenwood's "Proud to be an American" in addition to plenty of Bruce Springsteen and other holiday appropriate artists.
Committing these acts means you have to wait an entire year to redeem your poor choice with the exception of a tattoo. In that scenario, you can get laser tattoo removal, and no one will accuse you of being unpatriotic for doing so. There's no need to experience tattoo regret for an entire year.
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