Thursday, 31 July 2008

Stupid things while drunk #483

There's a long history of people doing stupid things while drunk, whether it's having sex with a pavement, trying to open an airliner's door midflight or trying to eat a fish supper while drinking a can of pop and texting your mates on the way home. (Which can only lead to a distressed scene when said chipper drops onto the pavement, spilling its golden wares onto the concrete).

Sometimes it can veer away from the relatively "normal" as above into areas that are termed: "criminal" and can lead to questions such as "What they f*@k were they thinking about?"

An Australian sheep-shearer, seemingly full of whisky, broke into a couple's hotel room, held them hostage, put them into a state of what can only be described as fear, hit one of them, before being apprehended by the hotel staff, one of whom he also hit.

The reason? He was refused more drink.

His lawyer told the court "He had far too much to drink. He remembers drinking whisky and that's not normally his drink."

The lawyer did not offer a plea of "That's the swally" and so it looks like he's going down, faster than a tinnie of Four X.

Sunday, 27 July 2008

Open Door Polizei

Stories of air-rage are not difficult to find. Put some people in a metal tube and hurl them through the air miles above the ground and you will eventually get some reactions. In fact I'm amazed there's not more incidents.

The classic is people going on holiday get boozed up on the way, continue on the flight, do something stupid, get restrained by the crew, aircraft diverts and they get arrested.

This week's Act of Stupidity involves two women on a Manchester to Kos flight, who went a bit daft on the swally, one of whom went to open the emergency door to get "some fresh air".

Thursday, 24 July 2008

Not Dead Drunk

Roy Castle for years fronted the Record Breakers show. It showed people who had earned their place in the Guinness Book of Records, for eating so many beans in a minute, jumping so many cars on a tea tray, or running 100 metres in a fast time, that sort of thing.

Roy Castle is now sadly dead but if he was I'm sure he'd have a slot on his show for this man: Stanley Kobierowski. He was arrested by police in Rhode Island, America after his car hit a message board on a highway. He showed signs of being over the legal driving limit but when he was breathalysed they had no idea how over the limit he was: blood alcohol reading 0.491 %.

According to the article in the San Francisco Chronicle they were "
the highest readings state officials could remember for someone who didn't end up dead. "

"If you're the strongest, the drunkest, if you beat them all - you're a Record Breaker!"

Sunday, 13 July 2008

Hard Times, Hard Liquor

When the going gets tough, the tough get drunk.

A story in a Pennsylvania news website shows that swally holds a special and necessary place in many lives. While consumers are turning away from large cars, and expensive coffees, they're turning towards the drink.

The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board reports that sales of alchol have gone up almost 5%.

With the recession approaching Britain, it's safe to bet the mortgage (which may be not such a enormous gamble as it was 10 minutes ago) that similar figures will apply.

Friday, 11 July 2008

Label warning

Doctors at a British Medical Association conference in Edinburgh this week have discussed the possibility of putting pictures of diseased livers on labels on bottles of swally.

As someone who was put off smoking by seeing a graphic public health information film of smokers with gaping holes in their throats caused by lung cancer, I can verify this type of approach can deter potential users.

But maybe when you're older it doesn't work. Those horrible colour pictures of dying people, or bloody just-born babies, in Benetton adverts put me off going into their shops, in case they had these images inside. (Plus their clothes seemed to be in similar colours to those of the post-birth photos - Bright Placenta is not a colour that I suit).

But there must be other possibilities with this preventative image approach.

  • Pizzas - images of fat folk's spare tyres
  • Mountain bikes - pictures of people in A&E with cracked skulls
  • Lonely hearts clubs - pictures of partners cutting their toenails in the living room
  • Nightclub flyers - images of standing in a rainy taxi queue at 3 in the morning
  • Political party election leaflets - pictures of Boris Johnson
These are only blue sky thinking suggestions - anyone can send their's in.

Thursday, 10 July 2008

Smirnoff Mice?

A great source of entertainment for those interested in the swally is to wait for the latest survey to come along telling you to:

1. Stop drinking
2. Moderate your drinking
3. Start drinking.

Well, it's rare that the last one comes up very often. A rarer one is "Keep drinking or you'll get depressed" but that's what a study from the University of North Carolina says. (Or at least, that's what the Daily Telegraph made of their study).

A key quote was " “In mice that voluntarily drank alcohol for 28 days, depression-like behaviour was evident 14 days after termination of alcohol drinking."

There's much to ponder over on this:
  • how much were the mice drinking beforehand?
  • if some are voluntarily drinking swally, are some being force-fed it?
  • how do they get the psychiatrist's couch into the cage to let the mouse lie down and discuss how they're feeling?
  • do they let them back on the swally to get them out of their slump?
This type of study only brings up more questions.

Two mice, possibly discussing whose round it is.

Photo: flickr / Stephen Barnett

Tuesday, 8 July 2008

A Rantin' Rovin' Jimmy Nelson (64)

The Scottish Sunday Mail has printed a story this weekend past of an incident that can be laid at the door of the swally.

New Year in Scotland is a time when if you're not drinking, you're not really there. It was always a holiday in Scotland, from back in the days when people worked Christmas. You could say it's because if you had the choice, there's more boozing to be done at New Year (although it's more to do with the distaste for celebrating a religious holiday stemming from those awfy Catholic rituals, in the staunch presbyterian land up north).

But nowadays, with Christmas starting off the holiday festive season, the swallification begins at least a week before Hogmanay (31st December) and come New Year's Day, quite a few people can feel a bit indifferent to taking any more drink.

Not the people of the Hawick Robert Burns Club.

On 1st January they gathered to celebrate the start of the new year. The catalogue of what happened can be read in the story itself but basically a man was found guilty of sexually assaulting two women: an inexcusable crime.

Though it's hard to get on the moral soapbox when the swally seems to have muddied that high ground.
  • One of the victims had flashed her chest at the accused, and straddled him, hiking up her skirt to do so.
  • The other said they'd been drinking vodka and cokes from midday.
  • One of the witnesses did admit to drinking about 10 pints.
The Mail quoted a club member: "What happened that day was out of character for the man and obviously drink is to blame."

No keich, Sherlock.

Tuesday, 1 July 2008

Full Steaming Ahead

One man who could have done with a magic swally bus was the 78 year old Swede who tried to row his way home. From Denmark.

The septagenarian had seemingly spent all his money on swally, and was left without enough for the ferry. So he did what most would do in that situation - he took a dinghy and attempted to get home that way. His cunning plan crashed on the metaphorical rocks of him falling asleep halfway across, in the middle of a shipping lane.

He was recovered by harbour police, towed back to Denmark, given the fare for the ferry and not prosecuted for stealing the dinghy.

What is Swedish for That's the Swally?