Wednesday, January 11, 2006

I'm Not As Think As You Drunk I Am

The NYTimes on the Brits and their booze:

For Britons, alcohol is a relaxant, an emollient, a crutch, an excuse. In
her book "Watching the English," the social anthropologist Kate Fox argues that
drinking does not turn English people into unattractive louts, but rather allows
them to express the unattractive loutishness latent in their character: in other
words, they drink so that they will have license to behave badly.

"By blaming the booze, we sidestep the uncomfortable question of why
the English, so widely admired for their courtesy, reserve and restraint, should
also be renowned for their oafishness, crudeness and violence," Ms. Fox writes.
Their antics have earned them a notoriety across Europe, from northern cities
where boozed-up Britons go on bachelor weekends to southern resorts where young
people on cheap package tours disgust the local residents by their fighting,
vandalism and public displays of vomiting and al fresco sex.