| Quote #4
Mike was a bad drunk. Brett was a good drunk. Bill was a good drunk. Cohn was never drunk. (14.6)
This concise quote sums up the difference between Cohn and the rest of the crowd (Jake included – we might as well add "Jake was a good drunk" to the list). Cohn, unlike everyone else, never surrenders himself to the experience of drunkenness, either because he can’t or he won’t.
| Quote #5
The fiesta was really started. It kept up day and night for seven days. The dancing kept up, the drinking kept up, the noise went on. The things that happened could only have happened during a fiesta. Everything became quite unreal finally and it seemed as though nothing could have any consequences. It seemed out of place to think of consequences during the fiesta. All during the fiesta you had the feeling, even when it was quiet, that you had to shout any remark to make it heard. It was the same feeling about any action. It was a fiesta that went on for seven days. (15.8)
The fiesta and its requisite state of constant drunkenness is a time of "unreal" events and chaos – a time in which our characters let go of any sober sense of right and wrong they might still possess.
| Quote #6
"I’m rather drunk," Mike said. "I think I’ll stay rather drunk. This is all awfully amusing, but it’s not too pleasant for me. It’s not too pleasant for me." (17.42)
Mike finally articulates something we’ve all been wondering about – he’s perfectly aware of his own abuse of alcohol and its psychological reasons, and consciously chooses to continue it.