With parties, kickbacks, shindigs, cocktail hours and box socials going on seven nights a week in I.V., it’s pathetically easy to string together an epic bender of intervention-worthy proportions, and that’s a major reason why I absolutely love this place. However, drinking every night among casual acquaintances gets dangerously close to alcoholic hockey mom territory. If you want to bust the slump, throw some competition into the party. I’m not talking about Russian “drink as much as you can and then die” drinking competitions; instead, I’m suggesting you create competitive events that happen to involve getting straight lagonzo.
I was recently invited to compete in Kruzer $kid Nation’s annual beach cruiser race. The format was simple: Show up in stupid clothes and ride a multi-lap race around I.V. with a beer chug after every lap. With bike crashes, car crashes, man thong-cape combos and a two-time champion senior puking all over the winner’s circle, it was a thoroughly impressive event. Best of all, none of the competitors felt any need to explain their distinct lack of sobriety. After all, getting shit-faced was a requirement.
As awesome as the beach cruiser race is, without a doubt, the greatest booze sport of all time is sloshball. Traditional sloshball is a kickball game with a keg at second base and all participants required to have beer in their hand at all times. Runners rounding second base must kill and fill before heading off to third, and all arguments are settled over pound-offs. Even if kickball isn’t your style, the sloshball format translates brilliantly to softball, baseketball (yes, baseketball, like the movie), four square, hockey, and even cholo ball or “Balls Be Danglin.”
If you’re too out of shape to play a booze sport, drinking game-based competitions are your best bet. From beerlays to the Taaka Challenge, game competitions offer the most flexibility in both team-size and event format, plus they are a great way to challenge your neighbors to a day of boozing rivalry that isn’t nearly as awkward as having them come over to partake in pre-party shots and lame conversation. Beerlays pit teams against each other with each player competing in an individual event, and the first team to finish the course wins. For example, a quick course would start off with a monkey chug, followed by flip cup and finished with a guy or gal pounding a beer, spinning 10 laps around a keg and running an obstacle course to the finish line.
For a slower pace, beer olympics use points awarded from individual events to determine an overall winning team. Yeah, like “Beerfest.” The allure of holding beer olympics is that you can make an event out of absolutely any drinking game you can think of. Ever played tequila Jenga with your house’s reputation on the line?
Finally, the most dastardly and diabolical of all drinking competitions are gauntlets. To win a gauntlet, an individual or team must simply finish whatever the contests’ organizers decide to put forth. For single players, Edward Fortyhands is by far the most famous, but having everyone drink an 18-pack in a case race turns things into an all day booze-a-thon. If you have pairs in mind, a grab-a-date night, where a guy and girl are zip-tied together and only released upon splitting a fifth, will get anyone sloppy and sexual. With more experienced players or larger teams, mixing in multiple items to finish is the most effective way to blitzkrieg sobriety. The most deadly gauntlet in the universe is the Great American Challenge. It requires that two players drink a 30-pack, smoke an eighth of chrondo and eat a large pizza. Just try not to die.
When I am casually told that “three to six beers before bed is the only way to have a good night’s sleep,” I really start to wonder if anyone at this school is ever sober. But when your monthly alcohol bill outpaces your food bill – and whose doesn’t – it’s not hard to start feeling like you resemble a middle-aged divorced dad who drinks cheap whiskey in the dark because he’d rather buy booze than pay the electric bill. If this describes you, and I sincerely hope it does, you don’t have to worry. There’s a major difference between a collegiate hooch-pounder and Mel Gibson. We can actually do shit when we drink.