Booze

Booze, drink, grog, juice, sauce. Much has been said recently of the ill effects of booze. Indeed binge drinking has reached epidemic levels in the UK.

But to be fair this country has mostly been arse-faced for the best part of a thousand years. The difference (or simply the re-emergence) now is people have so much pent up anger, fear, anxiety at just about everything that the result is the sudden outpouring of those emotions.

1350: per capita consumption of wine in Siena was 5 liters per day.

1830: a major issue with drukedness arose due (in part at least) to the harsh social conditions brought about by the nation’s rapid industrialization.

Circa World War One: Attempts to reduce alcohol consumption were made in Germany, Austria-Hungary, France and Italy. In Britain, David Lloyd George, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, led the campaign against alcohol. In January 1915, Lloyd George claimed that Britain was “fighting German’s, Austrians and Drink, and as far as I can see the greatest of these foes is Drink.

Pretty much at the heart of most cultures booze has (most probably) been one of the driving forces of historical decisions. Makes you wonder what in our history has been decided apon under the influence?

Anyhoo. here are some edited highlights of ’40 things a drunkard should do before they die’

Go on a fishing trip with your pals.
Ensure you bring enough beer and liquor to paralyze the nation of Liechtenstein. Fishing tackle is optional. Drink near a body of water (you don’t actually have to come in contact or even see the water, but it should be nearby), then, when night falls, build a huge campfire. There is nothing more conducive to male bonding and rampant drinking than a campfire. Trust me, strip clubs come in a distant second.

Steal some booze.
Against the law? Sure. A hell of a rush? Absolutely. Of course, not getting caught is very important. Plan well. Nothing tastes quite so sweet.

Try absinthe.
Do the full ritual with the spoon and sugar. Drink enough to feel the full effect. Stroll the path that Hemingway, Van Gogh, Degas, F. Scott, and myriad other geniuses spent their lives pounding flat. Just don’t cut your ear off.

Make your own beer, wine or moonshine.
There are fewer finer feelings in the world than to nurture booze from it’s humble, evil-tasting origins to something you can get hammered on. Just expect to repeat these words over and over again when you go mad on the blood of your creation: “I made this! Me! And now I’m drinking it! Woo-hoo!”

I’ll drink to that

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