April 12, 2012

The Drinking Games

How old were you the first time you had a beer? I was 8. It was literally an accident, a misunderstanding, but I was 8 years old when I went into the minifridge in the family den and pulled out what I thought was a soda, but one in a silver can, or I guess you'd call it a Silver Bullet. My dad found out, not because he found me drunk, but because he found a half-drunk can of beer back in the fridge. Can you blame a guy, 8 or 38, for not liking Coors Light?

A news story tonight talks about actors Josh Hutcherson and Alexander Ludwig, apparently from a movie based on a book aimed at the 21- demographic called The Hunger Games. But the story focused not on being hungry, but on their, well, drinking games. Both actors are 19, and both are alleged to have imbibed alcohol. Hutcherson went on record (OK, he went on TMZ) and said, "I think the age to go to war is 18, so I think the drinking age should be 18 as well."

I agree. Do you?

I'm not saying I think Americans age 18-20 should break the law. I'm saying the law should be changed to allow them to drink legally. I'm not going to say I think they already do drink; we all KNOW they do. Dollars to d'oh, nut brown ales, we all had some beers in that age range ourselves. And not very good craft ones at that. (Although, in my defense, I got bit by the better-beer-bug when I was studying abroad where I was well above any legal drinking age, so it was hard to come back to school and A: not drink beer and B: not splurge on better beer even when my friends thought I was mental for spending more on bombers than they spent on 40s!

My son's 17 3/4 years away from turning 18. I seriously hope I don't have to wait 3 years longer to take him to a bar for his "first" real beer.

10 comments:

Derrick Peterman said...

I was probably five when I had my first beer. I walked right up to a keg and poured a beer in a stryofoam cup because all the adults were doing it. Everyone turned to my dad and I remember him saying "Well, if he wants to try a beer, he can try a beer." I assume he kept his eye on me but he never went around saying "You can't have this, you're not old enough." He didn't want to create some mystique with alcohol that would cause me to abuse it later. While I did my share of binge drinking when I turned the legal age of 21, I appreciate my father's "benign neglect" method of parenting, and wish it was more common in our society.

Brian Yaeger said...

Agreed. A big reason kids drink is because they're always told they can't. If only they realized they're plenty weird enough without the effects of alcohol.

admin said...

People drink underage all the freakin' time. Society likes to put these celebrites on pedastals, thinking that its a travesty that they are resorting to the type of behavior of common folk. Get real - they broke the law but they didn't do anything bad.

And if anyone is interested, here is the hunger games drinking game rules.

Kris said...

I don't remember the exact age I had my first taste of beer. 8? 12? But I do remember that it was a day I was fishing with my dad and some of his buddies and their kids. It was late in the afternoon and I was getting cranky that I was thirsty. My dad was tired of my whining and told me if I was that thirsty I could drink "this" - his can of crappy beer. One sip and I decided to keep my trap shut.
I agree that the drinking age needs to be lowered.

Brian Yaeger said...

Kris, Ha, I love it. I definitely think that if kids are encouraged to try those cheap bad beers, they'd actually have the sense enough to stay away from them rather than pound them. The other side of that coin is to offer them and walk them through good/craft beer and explain that it's best when sipped, and hopefully they won't want to pound those either.

hollywood bistro said...

Underage are prohibited. Parents must guide their kids in drinking.

Brewmance said...

90% of American laws should be abolished. Those regarding drinking, distribution, and other various business related laws apply.

I would visit with my Dad and he would always (at the time) have a can of Hamms laying around, and I would always sneak up to it, and just about down the entire thing. I was about 8 as well when I did that.

Parents, as with education, play the ultimate role in a young persons ideology regarding their individual safety, thought, and action in life. Laws are designed by people who are getting paid to constantly create laws.. a never ending cycle.

I thank my Mom for sharing some wine for dinner when I was about 12, and explaining its creation, taste, and stigma.

Brewmance said...

What I meant to say, is that there shouldn't be ANY law regarding a drinking age.

Brian Yaeger said...

90% is probably far too Libertarian for me. But I could see wiping 50% of the laws off (like anything that prohibits me from going through a red light at 3am when there is no cross traffic, or making a U-turn when I'm positive it's safe). I'd say "somewhere in Germany a parent is laughing at our age restrictions on drinking beer," but really, it's every parent across Europe and most of the world. I think parents offering their kids sips of beer at age 12 (+/-) is common among responsible parents, if only to show those kids, Hey, you probably don't like this beverage.

Iva Mae said...
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