Monday, October 17, 2005

Responsible Beer Pong

Sunday's New York Times has an article on popular drinking games and their inevitable encouragement of binge drinking. Jeffrey Gettleman, I applaud your journalistic skills. The fact that you were able to get so many ridiculous, unintentionally hysterical quotes and factoids and presented them all with a straight face is commendable. Ones like these (bold & italics mine):

This past summer, Anheuser-Busch unveiled a game it calls Bud Pong. The company, which makes Budweiser, is promoting Bud Pong tournaments and providing Bud Pong tables, balls and glasses to distributors in 47 markets, including college towns like Oswego, N.Y., and Clemson, S.C.

Bud Pong may soon expand into more markets, said Francine Katz, a spokeswoman for Anheuser-Busch Companies Inc.

"It's catching on like wildfire," Ms. Katz said. "We created it as an icebreaker for young adults to meet each other."

Beer companies like Anheuser-Busch have made promoting "responsible drinking" a matter of corporate philosophy, partly as an answer to criticism that they market to youth.

But Ms. Katz said Bud Pong was not intended for underage drinkers because promotions were held in bars, not on campuses. And it does not promote binge drinking, she said, because official rules call for water to be used, not beer. The hope is that those on the sidelines enjoy a Bud.

Oh my god, I'm crying. This is so funny. But wait, there's more:
After he won his game and drifted off to the bars, Mr. Field confided, "The point of drinking games is to get as lit as possible."

But, he added, friends make sure no one drinks too much or chugs alone.

Okay okay okay. Just one more:

While the Miller Brewing Company has no companywide campaign for beer pong, its distributors are getting in on the action. Aimar McQueeney, a sales representative for a Miller distributor in Smyrna, Ga., said Miller supplied her with prizes and "Miller girl" models for a four-day beer pong tournament in Atlanta in May, which drew hundreds of people.

"It's the perfect demographic," Ms. McQueeney said. "It's mostly college kids pounding pitchers of beer."

Aimar, you are so fired.

There's more. Read the article. Unsurprisingly, I didn't even understand the rules of beer pong, as described in the article:
In beer pong, each team stands at the end of a table in front of a triangle of cups partially filled with beer. Players pitch the ball into the other team's cups. When a player sinks the ball, the other team must chug the beer and remove the cup from the table. When a side runs out of cups, it loses.
This game is ludicrous, people! You're asking me to drink a cup of beer that just had a ping-pong ball in it? UGH! I don't know where that ping-pong ball has been! Did it ever touch the floor or another ping-pong paddle? At the very least, the pitcher's fingers have been on it! Doesn't anybody give a damn about sanitation anymore?

Kids these days.

And another thing: I think that it's....oh wait! It's beer-thirty! Gotta run.


At 10/17/2005 2:48 PM, Blogger RabbitGirl said...

It's also amusing that everyone is touting this as if it's a New Game... c'mon, I played this charade (pronouced sha-rod, thank you veddy much) years ago, before I learned of the horrors of unsanitary pingpong balls.

At 10/17/2005 2:56 PM, Blogger Jason said...

Well, I think it's more that the game is now being promoted "officially" by beer companies, as opposed to it just being another random social drinking game.

I already know about the games you played with ping-pong balls in college, let's not discuss it further. :p

At 10/17/2005 5:00 PM, Blogger Brian said...

if you were in Bangkok maybe the ping pong ball was shot with something else...

and there's plenty of drinking games out there already that don't need a "sponsor" from chandeliers to quarters to Hi Bob!....

i guess college kids aren't so imaginative any longer...


Post a Comment

<< Home