While Prohibition may have withered the American drinker’s palate and understanding & sent the most talented drink-slingers into exile, cocktails are back, and better than ever! And who are the people that have brought the all-but-dead art of America’s contribution to world drinks culture (and the profession & craft of the Bartender) back to stunning, exuberant life? Hey Bartender! [more inside]
Washington Post's Wonkblog, leveraging data from the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (NESARC) and economics and public policy professor Philip J. Cook's "Paying the Tab" looks at how much Americans drink. 30% of Americans don't drink at all. Another 30% consume fewer than one drink per week. To be in the top 10% of American, you'd need to drink the equivalent of 74 drinks per week, every week, or a little over 10 drinks per day.
Drunk online shopping regrets. Guardian writers share their stories of accidental bulk buys and bargains that didn’t seem so wise the morning after. [more inside]
This indignant map exposes the seamy underbelly of 1890s Washington, D.C., naming and locating “saloons” and “bawdy-houses” in the so-called Murder Bay neighborhood, located east of the White House. The Library of Congress, which holds the map, tells us that it’s a newspaper clipping from the 1890s, without a known author or publisher. (Slate.com)
Burt Likko is a lawyer who used to handle litigation arising from bar fights. He's learned a bit about how and why they happen.
My elevator pitch for ending sobriety had been “moderate social drinking without ever blacking out again.”
Nightmare in Maryville - The Kansas City Star investigates the backlash against the victims family after rape charges were brought (and dropped) against local atheletes. The pattern of victim blaming and local indiference have brought comparisons to the Steubenville, Ohio case (previously) and anger on the internet. Meanwhile the Grand Jury investigation into Steubenville has brought it's first charges against an adult involved with the cover-up.
Lawyers need bartenders more than bartenders need lawyers. When it comes to cocktails and the names they’re given, a recipe can’t be copyrighted and a name isn’t usually trademarked, and there’s no governing body, no law of the liquor land that stops the duplication of a recipe or a cocktail name. Which makes cocktail naming—shall we call it mixonymics?—special among naming practices in the modern world: It’s the bartender tribe, not the law, that defines prior art."Swizzle Me This," Michael Erard, The Morning News (single link)
"Anything else you want to add? Don't do drugs kids?" "Yeah That's a good one." In a highly (un)scientific experiment, BuzzFeed video producer Andrew Gauthier spent one night drunk and one night stoned while performing identical tasks. He filmed the results for our
England has a drinking problem. Since 1990, teenage alcohol consumption has doubled. Since World War II, alcohol intake for the population as a whole has doubled, with a third of that increase occurring since just 1995. [...] The United States, although no stranger to alcohol abuse problems, is in comparatively better shape. A third of the country does not drink, and teenage drinking is at a historic low.How a vertically integrated alcohol industry is to blame, and why the US could find itself in the same position soon.
Even in the grips of the Great Recession, one industry's profits are bubbling up, pouring forth, and experiencing growth in market share, dollars spent, and profit: craft beer! [more inside]
Q: OK, I'm ready for the long answer now. A: A highly vocal minority of Martini drinkers, the Prescriptivists, insists that the short answer is in fact the only answer...
Ali Spagnola's Synonyms for Drunk is a remarkably catchy song featuring 91 words for "Drunk" in less than one minute. [slyt]
According to research recently published in Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research[DOI: 10.1111/j.1530-0277.2011.01711.x], tattooed people drink significantly more than their peers (as well as other risky behaviours).
Sexual Deprivation Increases Alcohol Intake in Drosophila (the original paper, and a précis, are both behind paywalls; the précis notes "anthropomorphizing the results from flies is difficult to suppress, but the relevance to human behavior is obviously not yet established")
New Year's Eve is fast approaching, and for lots of folks that means... drinking. Plenty of drinking. And since there's no shortage of singers and songwriters who've had a little something to say about that particular topic, maybe some of the following tunes can serve as an appropriate soundtrack to your own joyous (or not?) imbibing of spirits. For example, there's... Jimmy Liggins with his succinct rendition of Drunk, and there's... [more inside]
“When it came to hard liquor . . . Americans preferred bourbon whiskey. Vodka was still mysterious, a drink yet to be discovered.” The story of how a colorless, odorless, tasteless spirit became a billion-dollar business in less than fifty years. (SLWeeklyStandard)
Before his death, Mickey Mantle spoke to Sports Illustrated about the effect that alcoholism had on his life and career. [more inside]
Four is a premium alcoholic beverage that features 12% alcohol and a serious (but undisclosed) dose of caffeine. While the original "energy beer" dropped the caffeine from their formula in 2008, Four Loko has become a hit on college campuses. Now, nine students were sent to the hospital after a party at Central Washington University where the "black out in a can" was on hand. The FDA is mulling a general ban.
Modern drinking games are often crafted around movies or television, leaving dry those with literary ambitions. Now you avid readers can get in on the fun! (via) [more inside]
Vancouver has long struggled with a reputation as a "No Fun City", largely due to draconian BC liquor laws. Many prohibition-era laws were not repealed until 1999 or later. The struggle to bring fun to the city culminated in the 2010 Olympics; but on Saturday, the fun proved too much for city officials, and police ordered all downtown liquor stores to close at 7pm. [more inside]
On 5 December 1933, 75 years ago today, Utah became the 36th state to ratify the Twenty-First Amendment of the United States Constitution, signalling the end of the Prohibition era.
I know what you're thinking: "What if I attached a faucet to a watermelon and filled it with spiked watermelon juice so party guests could serve themselves right from the melon?"
"It is binge drinking. We don't see people who've had just two drinks. People have had 20 shots of vodka." In central London, "Alternative Response Vehicle - or Booze Bus, as it's more commonly known - draw on their reserves of composure, ingenuity and stoicism to treat more than 20 dazed drunks," over the course of a 12-hour shift. [more inside]
MADD has an interesting new ad campaign out that uses something a lot of designers tend to forget about when putting together a poster: the paper it's printed on.
I'm Just Drinking is Paul Kahn's attempt at making a bartending guide to webcomics. Here you'll learn how to make any one of several Penny Arcade themes drinks, a Diesel Sweetie, a VG_Cats and my personal favorite, a Something Positive (whose latest comic is how I came across this project).
Is Cinco De Mayo For Sale By the Alcohol Industry? In the 1960s, Chicano activists in Colorado promoted a boycott of Coors beer in response to employment discrimination against Latinos at Coors breweries. Coors had two problems. They had to fix their image with Latino consumers, and they had to figure out some way to get college students to drink more beer in May. The solution: start sponsoring Cinco de Mayo! Thus, even though Mexicans in Mexico celebrate their independence day on September 15th and 16th, Mexican-Americans are more likely to celebrate the May 5th anniversary of the Battle of the Puebla, which is not even commemorated with a national holiday in Mexico. In fact, the Battle of the Puebla was a skirmish in the Pastry War, a French intervention in Mexico that began because a French chef demanded several thousand pesos to compensate him for Mexican military officers looting his pastry supply.
On-On! I had never heard of the Hash House Harriers ("the drinking club with a running problem") until a friend clued me in. Now I don't know how I had missed them! They're certainly very visible -- and audible. Here's how it works. Their origins are in the British expat community in Kuala Lumpur, but nowadays they are everywhere!
One of their key ingredients is a bit problematic in this post-9/11 world, but they are adaptable.
One of their key ingredients is a bit problematic in this post-9/11 world, but they are adaptable.
NYC man pledges to visit 1000 bars in 2005. That's an average of about three per day, and as of yesterday he was already up to 135. Pray for his liver.
Hello to you, my name is Liquor Control Bee (wav). Meet L.C. Bee -- his songs are sure to keep your kids uncrunked. Part of an elite cabal of juvenile moralizers, L.C. Bee is currently collaborating on an album with Daren the D.A.R.E lion (WAV). These kids today, you know.
Idiotarod. The Iditarod is the famous long-distance race in which yelping dogs tow a sled across Alaska. Our Idiotarod is pretty much the same thing, except that instead of dogs, it's people, instead of sleds, it's shopping carts, and instead of Alaska it's New York City.
"Not My Head!" Drinking games based on movies or television shows are legion, but surely the most epic, erudite, witty, and hangover-inducing is "Not My Head": the "I, Claudius Drinking Game"! Whether or not you've ever seen the 13 part BBC series on which it's based, the rules are quite simple—and since every episode contains plenty of banishments, poisonings, and orgies, you can be sure you'll be working through those bottles of red wine pretty quickly. Dress as your favorite character for extra debauched realness - and remember, you can't tell the players without a scorecard! (Especially when you're drunk.)
Speaking Of weight loss and exercise... Those who like their booze also like their nicotine. People who drink to excess also tend to be chronic smokers, and a new report suggests the combination of the two might prove more toxic than either one alone. a small study found chronic smoking + alcohol dependence = increased severity of brain damage. The frontal lobes (short-term storage sites) turn out to be the most damaged. A separate study used rats to show that alcoholism and excessive food intake may share the same chemical pathways in the brain. Forbes has the HealthDayNews report that focuses mainly on the smokes, MSNBC looks more at the eats. They also have an interesting Addictions Sections. Could it be that some folks are just prone to addictions and everyone settles on something different?
The Dittohead Guide To Adult Beverages can be read in its entirety (abt. 250Kb) on the Web. (For those of you in Rio Linda, a dittohead is a Rush Limbaugh fan.) But Britt Gillette has also self-published his book and wants you to make his dreams come true by buying it on Amazon. It's got hilarious drink names in it, like "Caller Abortion" (a stunt Limbaugh used on his show -- complete with the sound of a vacuum cleaner), "Feminazi Frazzle," and "John F-ing Kerry." The recipes look like they'd make tasty drinks, but I think I'll pass on the purchase. Who really needs a novelty, right-wing drink recipe book?
The AWOL Machine - a new way to party. Just incase you have trouble getting drunk.
It's time to send the team home: "England has bred a contemporary culture of immoderation at every level, with particular reference to drinking and fighting. The recent Panorama programme on weekend binge-drinking in city centres provided a wake-up call, as should the novelist Andrew O'Hagan's admirable essay on current British attitudes to masculinity, reprinted in yesterday's G2." (via The Guardian)
How much alcohol have YOU consumed in your life? Take the "drink-o-meter" test. (Flash) I rated a "Homer Simpson", which means I could fill a few bathtubs, but haven't quite spent the Ferrari money. Something tells me that many of MeFi's finest will bury my score...via the Sporting Press.
"You are What you Drink?" The University of Manitoba has published a study asserting that your choice of tipple could provide insight on your personality. Perhaps we will finally have some answers to the questions posed in this thread.
Poor, Much-Maligned Alcohol Gets A Good Word: It's quarter to three, there's no one in the place/Except you and me,/So set 'em' up Joe, I got a little story/ I think you should know... And the story is something, if you're a drinker, you probably already know. (I was so surprised by this article I wondered if it was sponsored by the booze industry. But then I mixed myself another drink; read the wonderfully-named, probably Guinness - and poteen-fuelled - Dublin Principles and drank its health anyway!)
Of All The Gin Joints In All The Towns In All The World, (You) Walk Into Mine: In Lisbon, it would have to be Lux for fun or The Ritz for serious drinking. But in all the towns in all the world, only Harry's Bar in Venice, despite the carping, would do. Listen to Hemingway! (More inside.)
The Spirits Of The Times: Whatever's Next? In an unstable marketplace, good old spirits have been undergoing an extraordinary renaissance since 1988, with 2003 the best year yet. And growing. With summer over and thoughts turning to the more warming libations, I wonder what the next big drinking craze will be. My bets are on the wonderful, underrated fruit brandies, distilled directly from fruit juices with nothing else added: kirsch, framboise, mirabelle. Mmmm... The best eaux-de-vie, in my experience, are those from G. E. Massenez and above all (though they're quite expensive and alcoholic) from the Swiss Paul Morand distillery. (Flash req.) An ice-cold Williamine, served in a shot glass surrounded by an old-fashioned tumbler full of shaved ice: oh what bliss on an autumn night, after a late dinner with old friends!
mmm, cold beer How to keep your beer nice and cold on a hot summer day.
You've Come A Long Way, Baby: Unfortunately, you picked the wrong one, dear old Old-Fashioned, dean of cocktails. Robert Hess's definitive essay on the ever-changing ways of making one shows just how contentious a cocktail recipe can be. It also bears sad testimony to how the great classics are being fruited up, iced up, fizzed up, shaken till obliteration and generally girlied, dumbed and boozed down. So how do you stand on the cherry, the pineapple and the orange? And don't even bother commenting if you're a seltzer fan! ;)
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