Alcohol Myth?

“Cooking removes alcohol.”

Mostly true. The rate by which alcohol is burned off depends on the method of cooking.

Studies show not all the alcohol is burned off: if a dish is left to simmer for hours, most of the alcohol will go away; but after 20 minutes of simmering, up to 50 percent of it can stick around. Flambéing leaves even more alcohol behind, and even less of it escapes during baking, because the alcohol has to work its way out of the batter.

See other: Mythconceptions?

Why did Agriculture Happen?

‘So why did agriculture happen? […]

Historians don’t know for sure, of course, because there are no written records. But, they love to make guesses. Maybe population pressure necessitated agriculture even though it was more work, or abundance gave people leisure to experiment with domestication, or planting originated as a fertility rite – or as some historians have argued – people needed to domesticate grains in order to produce more alcohol.

Charles Darwin, like most 19th century scientists, believed agriculture was an accident, saying, “a wild and unusually good variety of native plant might attract the attention of some wise old savage.”‘

– Green. J. (2012, January 26) The Agricultural Revolution: Crash Course World History #1

Alcohol and the Ragdoll Effect

If you have an accident or serious injury while drunk you are more likely to recover than if you are sober. In fact, there is a thing called the ragdoll effect, where if you fall while drunk or do not brace during a crash, you are more likely to survive.

“I drink to make other people more interesting.” – Ernest Hemingway

Researchers of the University of Chicago have spent 14 years examining the ragdoll effect, analysing the blood alcohol of 190,000 trauma patients. With the exception of burns death rates from all traumatic injury fell as blood alcohol levels rose. Amongst the extremely drunk mortality rates fell by nearly 50%. Gunshot and stab victims had the greatest benefit. Amongst drivers however, you are between two-to-four times more likely to die in a car crash.

Elaine: So what you are saying is that 90 to 95 percent of the population is undateable?
Jerry: Undateable!
Elaine: Then how are all these people getting together?
Jerry: Alcohol.
Seinfeld (1995) Season 7, Episode 4; “The Wink” [No. 114]

The Alcoholism Of James Bond

Research has been done into the alcohol consumption of James Bond ‘as if he were a real person’. The objective of the research was to create a retrospective literature review quantifying James Bond’s consumption of alcohol as detailed in the series of novels by Ian Fleming. Essentially, the researchers measured the weekly alcohol consumption by Commander Bond.

Martini ‘shaken, not stirred’ is Bond’s favourite drink

The research was conducted as follows: all 14 James Bond books were read by two of the authors. Contemporaneous notes were taken detailing every alcoholic drink taken; predefined alcohol unit levels were used to calculate consumption; and days when Bond was unable to consume alcohol (such as through incarceration) were noted.

The results were quite surprising: after exclusion of days when Bond was unable to drink, his weekly alcohol consumption was 92 units a week, over four times the recommended amount in the United Kingdom. His maximum daily consumption was 49.8 units. He had only 12.5 alcohol free days out of 87.5 days on which he was able to drink.

In conclusion, if James Bond were a real person, his level of alcohol intake would put him at high risk of multiple alcohol related diseases and an early death. Bond would be considered a grade 3 drinker, putting him in the highest risk group for malignancies, depression, hypertension, cirrhosis and sexual dysfunction. Researchers estimate death at 56.

“You only live twice:
Once when you’re born
And once when you look death in the face.”
― Ian Fleming, You Only Live Twice

The level of functioning as displayed in the books is inconsistent with the physical, mental, and indeed sexual functioning expected from someone drinking this much alcohol. Bond’s alcohol consumption resembles a pattern that is commonly seen in people suffering from chronic liver disease; although he has enough in his life to be stressed about, his drinking is probably enduced by a cerebellar tremor (also known as an intention tremor, the result of dysfunction of the cerebellum).

Besides the fact that Bond has quite a dangerous job, his heavy alcoholism is not his only danger in his life; a chapter in Casino Royale begins with the line ‘Bond lit his 80th cigarette of the day’. – Ian Fleming, coincidentally, was an ardent smoker.