While this year revealed that prohibition is alive and kicking in some states, Americans in 2012 carried on last year's mission of finding new, easier, and more dangerous ways in which to get totally hammered. There were brave new methods of getting drunk without actually drinking — and without even moving at all. Not to mention all the revolutionary ways to market booze to kids. Here now, the year in irresponsible drinking:
Sure, people have been working for years on methods of getting drunk without actually drinking, but 2012 saw some glorious new developments. The most epic of these is most certainly the fad that is just SWEEPING college campuses (or at least the fraternity portions): Butt chugging. A University of Tennessee frat member was rumored to have been hospitalized after forcing wine up his butt to get drunk faster. He later held an absurd press conference to deny the accusations.
Liquid Nitrogen Is Trying to Kill You
Nightjar and its whale-infused Moby Dick cocktail. [Photo: Facebook]
Americans weren't the only irresponsible drinkers this year. A whole lot of irresponsible drinking went down in jolly old England, too. Most notably, there was that whole issue of the irresponsible use of liquid nitrogen in England this year as a liquid nitrogen cocktail nearly killed a British teenager, leading to her having her stomach removed and a crackdown from the British government on liquid nitrogen. But no, the UK doesn't have the corner on that: a liquid nitrogen beverage also sent a guest at an Atlanta bar to the hospital this year.
Wine Delivered to Your Door
Run out of wine at home? No problem. Amazon is now delivering wine to your door, making it that much easier to get drunk on wine at home and then buy a whole bunch of other crap on Amazon. If you're in Tokyo, though, you can just move into one of Tokyo's new wine apartments where a sommelier and a 10,000 bottle wine cellar are always at your fingertips.
Getting Hand Sanitipsy
[Screenshot: Colbert Nation]
Stephen Colbert warned the world about the newest drunk in which kids started getting drunk off of hand sanitizer. Parents starting freaking out earlier this year when some Los Angeles-area teens turned up in the hospital after using salt to separate the alcohol from the sanitizer. This was apparently a trend, and definitely not a good idea.
What would a year be without a famous person getting involved in a drunk driving incident? This year it was Iron Chef Cat Cora who was cited for a DUI after causing a minor traffic incident in Santa Barbara this year. She claimed to have had just three beers. Don't worry, there's video of the incident and audio of the 911 call in which the caller told operators Cora was "just driving insane."
Drinking For the Kids With OMG!!! Chardonnay
Wine for the kids. [Photo: TXT Cellars/Facebook]
Just in case there were still kids out there who weren't all that into drinking, alcohol producers came up with some novel new marketing schemes this year. For example, there's a totally real wine producer named TXT Cellars, which seeks to sell wine to tweens — er, kids of legal drinking age — by speaking their text message-y language. That means the youth of America is now getting into wine with OMG!!! Chardonnay and LOL!!! Riesling. Now, of course, the beer industry is pondering branding to Millenials, too. Stay tuned for that one in 2013, no doubt.
[Photo: Franck Fife/AFP]
Sure, why not just go straight to drunk with an alcohol spray? That's what designer Phillipe Starck and scientist David Edwards unleashed upon the world this year. Wahh Quantum Sensations claims to get you momentarily drunk without any side effects. Each dose has 0.075 milliliters of alcohol — too much or not enough?
Hitler Wine Became a Reality
Hitler wine. [Photo: Vini Lunardelli]
Not really sure how any winemaker thought Hitler wine was a good idea this year, but Italy's Vini Lunardelli made it a reality with a line of wines celebrating historical figures such as Che Guevara, Churchill, Francesco Giuseppe, Gramsci, Hitler, Marx, Mussolini, Napoleon and Sissi. You know, just in case you want to be reminded of some of the world's grimmest history while getting drunk. Italian prosecutors are investigating the wine and the Italian integration minister told the press that the wine "offends the memory of millions of people." And how.
Hangovers Go Hardcore With Insane Bloody Marys
Parlor Sports' 'Tailgate in a Glass' Bloody Mary. [Photo: Rachel Leah Blumenthal]
Every bout of irresponsible drinking inevitably ends in a killer hangover, so during this year's Cocktail Week, Eater sites across the country researched everything hangover-related: from hangover cures to hangover-proof drinks and details on the longest hangover in history. But hey, the best cure for irresponsible drinking is maybe more irresponsible drinking? Good thing restaurants across the country have crafted over-the-top Bloody Marys topped with hamburgers or infused with beef jerky.
Irresponsible Drinking Goes Hi-Tech
Why yes, that is a robot bartender. [Photo]
One great thing about 2012 was the development of brand new technologies to make drinking even easier, such as the robot bartender. Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University taught a robot to take drink orders and then get the drinks, which bodes well for more time-efficient binge drinking. Or you could always take a more low-tech page from Conan O'Brien, who showed everyone that squirt guns are a great way to expedite the vodka-drinking process.
Boston's mini-chain Salvatore's unleashed adult-only pizzas earlier this year, involving toppings such as dried cherries soaked in raspberry vodka, Kahlua-marinated braised pork and rum-infused peaches. But don't worry, the kids are safe from this one: Diners have to flash an ID to get one of these pies.
Miscellaneous 2012 Drunk News
· Cat Cora Cited For a DUI (With Video and a 911 Call)
· Costco's Wine Buyer Doesn't Think Wine Is Different Than Toilet Paper
· Rich Americans Forced to Pawn Fancy Wine
· White Castle Tests Beer and Wine Service
· 13 Ways to Get Drunk Without Actually Drinking