August 22, 2006

America's Drunkest City

Today Forbes posted a special report on America's drunkest cities and according to their research Milwaukee is the drunkest city in America. I am not surprised. We have like eight bars for every one corner in Milwaukee. The first thing people ask me when I tell them I live in the Milwaukee area is, "So, is that like the beer capital or what" When I found out that The Husband's company was moving us from San Diego to Milwaukee nine years ago the first thing I thought of was Laverne and Shirley. And lots of beer bottle caps.

I've never seen a city have more bars. I've seen ten bars on the same side of the street and only like six blocks separating them. I think Wisconsin invented tailgating which is another occasion to knock a few back. What goes better with deep fried turkey and cheese curds? Beer.

Every time I go to the Milwaukee Zoo I see at least five people who are intoxicated. I'm not sure I can blame them. I often want to get drunk after a family trip to the zoo.

Wisconsinites love their food and their beer, not to mention every other kind of alcoholic beverage. And if the food is fried or on the stick. Well that's just a little piece of heaven. One thing I've noticed since moving here is that Milwaukeeans find any possible reason to celebrate with a plethora of edible delights, the least of which are cheeses, meats, and pastries. Then there's the booze. You can't forget the booze. How else is one going to cook their brats and make cheese soup?

When it comes to getting drunk at a kids birthday party-or baptism-Milwaukee leads the way. You're having a hang nail removed? That's call for a party and three kegs. You adopted a new dog? I'll order six cases of wine and four twelve packs of Leinenkugels. And for those of you who hate the taste or smell of beer, you'll really gag at the smell of it being brewed. I avoided driving to downtown Milwaukee while pregnant with LiL' J because the smell was enough to make me puke. It took me four years to get used to that smell. The stench wafts through the air and assaults the nose. It's nasty stuff. And for some, that smell is GOOD. Almost nostalgic.

I've had a few people tell me that smell brings back memories of childhood in Milwaukee. I grew up with smog. Lots of smog. Tourists were told it was the "marine layer". Um, no. It was smog.

And it smelled a lot better than the scent of fermenting yeast.

I'll give Milwaukeeans this though. They sure know how to have fun. And make a kick-ass danish.