Wednesday, November 2, 2011


        (I had intended to get all literary with this piece and introduce it with a quote which, until I tried to find it, I was sure is from Robert Pean Warren in All The King’s Men, which I’ve read at least three times.  Anyway it’s essentially that drinking in excess is the only way that will do a man any good. [The author said “man” I’m sure.] if anybody can point me to the exact quote I'd appreciate it.)
        We recently learned that Amy Winehouse died from alcohol poisoning.  According to the coroner’s report, she had no other drugs in her system, but had a blood alcohol level of .40, the over the limit line for driving both here and in the U.K. being .08.  According to reports, a period of abstinence was followed by the discovery of her body surrounded by empty vodka bottles.
         A friend of mine in the mid 1970's went with her roommate to the roommate’s home in Tennessee.  There they went to visit some of the roommate’s friends.  At the house they visited there was a guy named Moe.  I don’t recall whether Moe did what he did on a dare or from pure exhibitionism, but I think it's safe to assume that Moe was already intoxicated when he opened the fifth of Jack Daniels, turned it up and downed the entire bottle.
      Shortly thereafter Moe passed out and was the subject of ridicule until someone realized he wasn't breathing.
           The punchline of this sad story is that Moe was no mo.
            I found some humor in Ms. Winehouse's demise as well.  It's in the British gift for wry understatement.  Her official cause of death was labeled "misadventure."
      Yes, consuming a gallon of vodka at one sitting is certainly an adventure gone awry.

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