Read this article from CNN (well, Mental Floss) yesterday. If you thought you’re party was banging, check this story out:

Admiral Edward Russell’s 17th-Century throwdownThink you can drink like a sailor? Maybe you should take a moment to reflect on what that truly means.

The record for history’s largest cocktail belongs to British Lord Admiral Edward Russell. In 1694, he threw an officer’s party that employed a garden’s fountain as the punch bowl.

The concoction? A mixture that included 250 gallons of brandy, 125 gallons of Malaga wine, 1,400 pounds of sugar, 2,500 lemons, 20 gallons of lime juice, and 5 pounds of nutmeg.

A series of bartenders actually paddled around in a small wooden canoe, filling up guests’ cups. Not only that, but they had to work in 15-minute shifts to avoid being overcome by the fumes and falling overboard.

The party continued nonstop for a full week, pausing only briefly during rainstorms to erect a silk canopy over the punch to keep it from getting watered down. In fact, the festivities didn’t end until the fountain had been drunk completely dry.

Jeez. Speaking of parties, though, I have to give it up to the Gift Foundation for putting on a ridiculous fundraiser event last night. It’s a beautiful (scary?) thing when you see all the men who are usually don the same aloha print/khaki pant ensemble dressed in tights and makeup. By the way, it was a costume party. While this party had nothing on Admiral Russell, I have to say that it was the best fundraiser I’ve ever been to.

Now, back to the topic at hand…drinking. One of the recurring discussions this week with one of my coworkers revolves around the connection of alcohol and the history of man. For example, in the middle ages it was actually safer to drink beer than water. Why? Because beer is boiled of course! So guess who was more likely to get sick, someone who drinks more beer or more water? Well, so too much of the foamy stuff will make you sick…but nothing keeps the plague at bay like a pint!

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