Sunday, September 16, 2007

"Gin is the reason we can't have nice things" - Emily Lynch

I broke my roomates sunglasses the other night in a drunken stupor. Which prompted the above quote. So I went to wikipedia and found this little interesting tidbit.

"Gin became very popular in England after the government allowed unlicensed gin production and at the same time imposed a heavy duty on all imported spirits. This created a market for poor-quality grain that was unfit for brewing beer, and thousands of gin-shops sprang up all over England. By 1740 the production of gin had increased to six times that of beer, and because of its cheapness it became extremely popular with the poor[citation needed]. Of the 15,000 drinking establishments in London, over half were gin-shops. Beer maintained a healthy reputation as it was often safer to drink the brewed ale than unclean plain water. Gin, though, was blamed for various social and medical problems, and it may have been a factor in the high death rate that caused London's previously increasing population to remain stable. The reputation of the two drinks was illustrated by William Hogarth in his engravings Beer Street and Gin Lane (1751). This negative reputation survives today in the English language, in terms like "gin-mills" to describe disreputable bars or "gin-soaked" to refer to drunks, and in the phrase "Mother's Ruin," a common British name for gin."

No wonder that irish woman I met at the bug jar was concerned that I only drink gin.

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