Letters from the Lunar Outpost

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- Emerson, American Poet and Essayist (1803-1882)

Men’s Health has released it’s list of America’s most drunken and least drunken cities.
It's Party Time in Fresno!

  “Drunkenest” cities:

  1. Fresno, Calif.
  2. Reno, Nev.
  3. Billings, Mont.
  4. Riverside, Calif.
  5. Austin
  6. St. Louis
  7. San Antonio
  8. Lubbock, Texas
  9. Tucson
  10. Bakersfield, Calif.
“Least drunk” cities:

  1. Boston
  2. Yonkers, N.Y.
  3. Rochester, N.Y.
  4. Salt Lake City
  5. Miami
  6. Newark
  7. Durham, N.C.
  8. New York City
  9. Fort Wayne, Ind.
  10. Manchester, N.H.

The magazine, which will publish the list of 100 major cities in it’s March edition, drew upon such data as death rates from alcoholic liver disease, booze-fueled car crashes, frequency of binge-drinking in the past month, number of DUI arrests, and severity of DUI penalties.

Source: USA Today

A cool list, great idea for an article, but I do have to question the methodology. With DUIs and car crashes as a gauge, the results can be skewed as some cities have more resources for catching drunk drivers and some cities also have more widely used public transportation. I think an even more interesting list would be to simply look at total amount of alcohol sold per capita, but let’s look at the list Men’s Health has given us.

First off, on the least drunken list . . .

There is something very, very wrong if only one city in Utah makes the least drunken list. My guess is reality would have 8 or 9 of the top ten cities coming out of Utah, unless of course, you don’t see enough signs of civilization there in Utah to call them “cities” so much as “villages” or “hamlets”.

And what’s up with Boston topping the list as least drunken city in America? Thanks for trying to destroy everything the television show Cheers stood for in my memories!

Miami, I can actually understand – it’s hard to put down too much liquor when you’re all hopped up on blow.

Looking at the most drunken list . . .

Fresno representin’ at the top, way to go Fresno! For a city closing in on a million people, you finally have a true claim to fame. I say, put it right under the Welcome to Fresno sign – “America’s Drunkest City!”

Interesting that Reno comes in second, topping Nevada’s two other big casino-filled destinations in Las Vegas and Laughlin. I’ve only been to Reno once, may have to revisit to do some more investigation on my own.

Riverside – yeah, makes perfect sense seeing as how just about every other episode of Cops seems like it was shot there.

A glaring omission though, and again, thanks for trying to destroy my somewhat cherished stereotype in leaving New Orleans off the top ten! Maybe the residents see enough drunken foolery in the visitors to the Big Easy to have some inspiration for moderation, but damn it, New Orleans! – if your city is legendary for a street called Bourbon Street and jazz music is live and in abundance all around like no other city in America, you have got to step it up and represent as the hard drinking city the rest of us view you as!

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