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Nightlife

St. Patty’s skirmish

Who really wins in a chugging contest?

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Illustration: Terry Colon
Stephanie Weedin

A chugging contest always sounds like a good idea at the time but never the next day. What do you even prove by winning? Pretty much that you can swallow quickly and that you don’t plan to remember what happens the rest of the night. It’s kind of pointless—but also right up my alley.

When the bar’s DJ announced that there would be an all-girl chugging contest, my competitive juices started flowing. I climbed on top of the bar where the contest was held. There were about 20 of us standing shoulder-to-shoulder. The bartender gave each of us a plastic cup filled with beer, which we raced to consume under the close supervision of a very drunk and supportive crowd. I’m pretty sure I won. There was a sea of arms pointing to me the second I brought down my cup. It was a pretty close call between me and one other girl, but the DJ announced the other girl as the winner. She is now my archnemesis. I’ll train harder for next year.

It was St. Patrick’s Day at McFadden’s, and the place was absolutely slammed. I waited in line for about 40 minutes to get in; I have never waited that long to get into anywhere. I probably should have made some effort to get on a guest list. Who could have expected an Irish bar to be filled to capacity on St. Patrick’s Day, though?

When the competition ended, I looked down to see a cell phone at my feet. I was still standing on the bar. I asked everyone within kicking distance if the phone was theirs. No one was claiming it, so I tried to leave it with a bartender. They all were really busy and I figured the phone’s owner couldn’t be far, so I called the last number on the recent call list. The owner’s friend answered, and I was able to return it to the owner. He was so grateful that he insisted on buying me more drinks than I should have accepted. He also insisted on exchanging numbers, which was a much easier thing to decline.

I ended up drinking too much free whiskey and feeling like death the next day. But really, is there such a thing as too much whiskey on St. Patrick’s Day? That’s like saying there is such a thing as too much whiskey on Christmas.

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