America, we've got a problem.
The first step is admitting it:
More than 38 million of us binge drink about four times a month (only?), having as many as 8 drinks in a sitting (lightweights).
In some nations across the Atlantic -- Germany, England, the Netherlands -- this is called being a pussy.
But in the U.S. of A it's cause for breathless concern:
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control released the figures today with ominous warnings about how binge drinkers "cost the United States $223.5 billion in 2006, or $1.90 a drink, from losses in productivity, health care, crime, and other expenses."
(Not bad, given the $15 drink prices at some Hollywood clubs these days).
This activity is also said to cause "diseases ... car crashes, violence, and sexually transmitted diseases." (We call that last one Coyote's Revenge).
While the rich are said to be champion binge drinkers (remember, they have that top shelf scotch, and only a few will do ya), the poor are really making a charge.
And hell, with this extended Great Recession we're in, almost half the nation is said to be "nearly poor." That's a huge binge demographic. The CDC:
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... The largest number of drinks consumed on an occasion is significantly higher among binge drinkers with household incomes less than $25,000--an average of eight to nine drinks per occasion, far beyond the amount thought to induce intoxication.
So now you know what those solo guys in the 7-Eleven buying 12-packs of Dos Equis are all about.
They're the most interesting bingers in the world.