Punishing Nightcaps for Morning After Eternities

Monday, April 8, 2002

By Tom Edwards

Every social drinker has the Inner Idiot in the recesses of their mind that cajoles them to "Have just one more!" Some heed his advice, others brush it aside, and some hug and squeeze their Inner Idiot all night long. Pretty soon 'one more' turns into 'who's counting' and everybody has a jolly time-until the next morning when the full brunt of alcohol's furious wrath is felt throughout the entire vessel. These are the top ten libations that cause the Inner Idiot to crawl back into the dark recesses and refrain from being a persuasive spiritual advisor for a long, long time.

#10 Bargain Brewhaha

Canned Milwaukee's Best makes the list on the merit of its acrid taste. It hangs heavy on the palate-especially if the canned ale was superheated to 178 degrees Fahrenheit in a buddy's trunk. Quaff 16 cans of those suds and your brain might as well be Roy Jones Junior's speed bag. The stuff is so nasty that under the "Born on Date" it says "Sorry".

#9 Dirty Bird

Old Crow is a toxic lacquer in which to coat the gray matter, along with every other whiskey, bourbon, or sour mash that comes in a plastic sports bottle, commonly referred to as a "traveler"-- for the drunk who likes to drink 'n skedaddle. Often found at ankle height in the liquor store bottle hierarchy, this gut rot is tailored for the poor sap that has absolutely, positively smacked rock bottom. A night of drinking Old Crow in lukewarm Vess cola lends to a piquant, intense hangover with subtle overtones of a brain anyeurism.

#8 Poodle Drinks

Foo-foo girl drinks are held in contempt by many a swillbelly, they look at them like punk rockers look at bubble gum pop-like contamination to the greater culture. While umbrella drinks go down the hatch without the burn, they pack a mighty wallop the next morn when the foo-fooer notices that their tongue is purplish brown and the underside of their toilet lid looks like a Jackson Pollack painting.

#7 Oily Brewsky

A stout beer like Guinness is rich, creamy, and utterly delicious. It has always baffled me how something that tastes so delectable could leave a human in such a defeated, crumbled mess the next morning. Tiny, surly, belligerent gnomes appear late at night and proceed to beat primal Celtic drumbeats with their small dwarfish Irish fists on the imbiber's tender temples. This is a truly all-encompassing hangover that lays bitter waste to the mind, the soul, and the lower digestive tract.

#6 Cactus Juice

A night of dancing with Jose Cuervo will put a person down for a mind numbing siesta, provided they don't try to skydive off of a 2 story building with a cocktail napkin as a parachute. When they awake they won't want to sink their teeth into a chalupa, either, provided they still have teeth, because the only one thing that burps like Mr. Cuervo is battery acid. For a simulation of a tequila hangover, go into the countryside some night. Find an angry tied up burro. Position your head directly behind the burro's hooves. Punch the burro's genitals. Repeat until you fade to black.

#5 French Fizz

The champagne hangover is the Frenchman's way of repaying the United States for being the sole reason their national language is French and not German. Panzers rolled over those ungrateful cheese eaters in a weekend. They wept and wrote poetry. We set our industrial wheels in motion to perform the bailout of the century. Despite the Frenchman's dainty backbone, their bubbly is good fare for celebrating New Year's and other International Foods moments, but the carnage the day after is simply hideous-in large part because women drink the stuff like Gatorade and later dunk their hair in violently sprayed chunks and spewed giggle juice. Alas! The Toilet eu Champagne, the Old French Fondue, the Altar of the Bitter Porcelain Frenchman.

#4 Sake Bomb

Sake, the potent rice wine, has a hangover that feels like you've got a fidgety sumo wrestler sitting on top of your head the next day-and that day will be as long as he is fat-and he doesn't wear a loin cloth. Now you know why sake crazed kamikaze pilots were more than willing to do aerial tricks right into the decks of aircraft carriers.

#3 Wine in the Box

Law should prohibit giant juice boxes of what is technically 'wine' from filling any wary traveler's goblet. These cartons of heavily fermented grape reconstitute hang out for years in people's reefers to lobotomize those that tip the cup-- or the box. (I've seen and done both-and I'm not proud of it.) The box, however, is not the sole indicator of ensuing cork flu-or spigot flu-- in this case. If the bottle of vino rings up less than a carton of milk and has a plastic screw top, prepare thee self for cerebral Armageddon.

#2 The Purple Doctor

Nyquil breaks an important ethic espoused by Hippocrates-" As to diseases, make a habit of two things-to help, or at least to do no harm". This member of the medical community doesn't just make a habit of doing the exact opposite of helping and not harming, it's habit forming. The bad doctor is in when the purple little bottle with the shot glass comes out for a late night house call. Congested-stuffy head, sore throat, cough, aching, fever? Who cares when you're boiled to the gills and burnt to the ground? The next day-M.I.A. due to P.B.F.- Purple Bottle Fatigue.

#1 Mountain Dew Classic

There is a reason for towns in this great country with names like Greasy Corner, Arkansas and others like Monkey's Eyebrow, North Carolina. It doesn't have to do as much with good old common sense and judgment as one might think. It probably has more to do with jars of clear unmarked liquid in cellars that are simply referred to as "white mule". It's the stuff of which bad dreams are made, and the morning after, if there is a morning after, will make even the most iron gutted think twice about taking a God forsaken nip of any alcoholic beverage ever again. Don't worry. That night they'll meet the buds to tip back some suds and buy a new one-way ticket to Sauceville.

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