How to Drink in Antarctica

An Antarctic Recipe: Enhanced Sangria:

  1. Accidentally freeze an entire airdrop pallet of wine so that you have enough broken bottles that need to be consumed NOW so that this recipe's portions make sense.

  2. Procure a reasonably clean 5 gallon bucket. At the very least, a bucket free of detritus. Add the booze in the right order and you don't have to worry much about disinfecting things.

  3. Add one 750ml bottle, each, of the following boozes: gin, light rum, tequila, triple sec, vodka.

  4. Add three bags of frozen fruit and several sliced oranges. Fresh fruit won't last forever and you might as well use it here instead of throwing it out.

  5. Fill the remainder of bucket with red wine. Try to strain out the broken glass, chunks of cork, and label before dropping them in.

  6. Let sit for roughly 24 hours. DO NOT PUT THE BUCKET OUTSIDE IN THE SUBZERO TEMPS. Freezing things is why you're making this in the first place.

  7. Hide the sharp implements and serve to the unsuspecting by the pitcher.

NOTE: A single person should not consume an entire pitcher of this.

This recipe can be easily scaled up to for 55gal Rubbermaid wheelie trashcan. I know this because we had more frozen wine left over and repeated the experiment on a more epic scale.

Also, a really interesting longer essay on the culture of drunkenness down there:

Alcoholism in Antarctica:

I once gave a presentation to an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting where I opened, "Hi, I'm Phil Broughton. I'm not an alcoholic but I am a compulsive bartender." From there, I told a tale of alcoholism and enabling from the perspective of a safety professional serving people booze to oblivion. [...]

I recall pouring glass after glass of Crown Royal for a person that, against all odds, was still managing to sit on a stool and semi-coherently ask for another drink. There were three people that individually pulled me aside and said, "Dude. STOP SERVING HIM. He is so far gone it's not even funny." Assuming they remember, as it was a decade ago, they were drinking too, and the ravages of hypothyroidism in Antarctica on memory, they probably still blame me for serving irresponsibly. I had a different perspective. I try to keep in mind and control the most serious danger and deal with the other ones as they come up. The most dire danger in Antarctica is always failure to respect the absolutely lethal environment of Antarctica itself. I was far happier to serve until I could guide him over to a couch to pass out than to see him stagger out into the -85F night. I was doubly happy to be serving him in the bar rather than have him get to this state, or worse, alone where something dumb/wrong might happen and no one would be able to help him until it was far too late.

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10 Responses:

  1. Great article. Fun 55gal idea.

  2. Pavel Lishin says:

    Full of fantastic quotes.

    You are, of course, supposed to be working during the day but if it’s just you in the bar, and no one’s keeping a tab, who’s to say you were even drinking?

  3. Joe says:

    Would've been cheaper to just tie him to the couch, but that can be kind of noisy.

  4. Phil says:

    I'd be lying if I said I wasn't surprised about the busted jaw. Antarctica taught me the valuable lesson that what might normally be a fistfight MAGICALLY MANIFESTS KNIVES the moment you serve tequila.

    I vowed that I wouldn't use tequila in anything but prairie fires after I had to talk a knife out of someone's hand. The burning from the half shot of tabasco tend to distract people from getting too excitable. Rather than bickering leading to violence, everyone just focused on the burning mouth and guts.

  5. You and Phillip Edward Broughton really should meet someday, if you have not already.

  6. Alex says:

    I’m to understand the solution that was implemented the following year was an HR representative from Contractor HQ that stayed for the whole winter to help with problems, by doing such things as sitting in the bar and monitoring drinking habits. When I was told of this plan I predicted the HR representative would be the Most Hated Person At Pole.

    Dilbert. In Antarctica. Also, quite possibly the drunkest person at the Pole, too.

  7. gths says:

    Ooooh yeah I love me some sangria but Antarctica seems like it has completely the wrong climate to appreciate it properly.

  8. Wouldn't hurt my feelings at all. It is possible that it's happened and we didn't know it. The oddballs of the Bay Area is a small yet complicated place full of ships and night.

  9. And decimated livers.

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