CLEAR THINKING WHEN DRINKING:
THE HANDBOOK FOR RESPONSIBLE ALCOHOL CONSUMPTION
This is an ideal book for parents to give to their college aged children. It is not intended to encourage drinking. It is meant to discourage irresponsible, dangerous drinking. This book is meant to empower the young adult who makes the decision to drink with the required information to drink responsibly. Too many new college students ruin their lives, or at the least, develop bad habits and misconceptions about alcohol use. These habits and misconceptions can lead to much more severe problems in the future. This book is also valuable as a reference for adults currently using alcohol who also may have some misconceptions about its properties.
Responsible consumption is a two step process; you must first assign the correct potency or strength to each drink you consume, and then you must keep a running count of how many DRINK EQUIVALENCES you have had over a specific period of time. This count must be associated with a finite amount of time. Three drinks over the span of two hours is not the same as three drinks in one hour. We'll get into the time factor and how it applies a little later, but for now:
Use The Drink Equivalence:
ONE BEER=ONE GLASS OF WINE=ONE SHOT OF LIQUOR
One beer being 12 oz, one glass of wine 5 oz, and one shot being 1.5oz of 80 proof liquor
The consumption of alcoholic beverages is common in most cultures and societies on earth. Ages of initiation vary in respect to the norms of those different cultures and societies. In Western countries most adolescents learn to drink alcohol between 12-18 years of age. In the U.S., 56% of eighth graders have tried alcohol In Italy and Greece about 25% of boys 11-12 drink at least once a week All over Europe it is not uncommon for 13-15 year olds to drink weekly. Since it is fact that most young people are going to experiment with this potent and often misunderstood drug, I think they should be taught how to drink safely and responsibly. I agree with the study of Forney, Forney, and Ripley (1988), that concluded "efforts to educate youth about alcohol should incorporate acceptable uses as well as the negative aspects of drinking." They also said, and I agree, "Alcohol is part of our society and it seems clear that most adolescents will experiment with it. Leaving students to find out about alcohol on their own may lead to serious consequences."
Historically, the use of alcohol, for the most part, has been studied and analyzed in a very negative vein. The reality is that alcohol has been, and is being enjoyed in moderation, by an overwhelming majority of the people that consume it. Most "drinkers" have no problem controlling their consumption. Another very telling reality is that the consumption of alcoholic beverages is commonplace in most human societies ( lad, Rice, page 8 ). If this fact, that most consumers of alcohol are moderate and responsible, than why are most of the reference materials so negative? The answer is that the influence of the abstinence theorists on alcohol education have been successful in misleading our society. Research has indicated that the reduction of consumption strategy is actually counter-productive to the desired results of decreasing the occurrences of alcohol use that is high risk. The results clearly indicate that responsible-use alcohol education programs were much more effective than were no-use alcohol education programs
Alcohol is a powerful drug. It's the oldest and most widely used drug in the world. It's also the most widely abused drug in America. If you choose to use this legal ( depending on age and when it's consumed ), drug, learn what to expect, and how it affects you. Everyone has their own limits. This book will teach you how to determine your own safe limits and enable you to enjoy the moderate consumption of alcohol
While sitting through college orientation with my daughter, it became painfully obvious that the university was expending a lot of energy and money warning of the ills of underage alcohol use. The various counselors and Deans of different departments warned the students about the difficulties they would encounter if they drank. University policy on alcohol use in the dorms was revealed. The statistics on how alcohol affects the drop out rate and how it can damage the grade point average was discussed. The students even performed a skit to emphasize the hazards of alcohol.
Sitting through that same orientation two years later with my son indicated that apparently nothing had changed. Many and varied statistics were being disseminated on the dangers of alcohol. Come to think of it, apparently nothing had changed since my own orientation many (too many), years ago. The message was still the same: don't drink....... we know you're going to drink, but don't drink. I ignored that message way back when, my daughter ignored the message two years ago, and I'm quite sure my son is ignoring that same message now.
The drinking age in all fifty states just happens to be 21. This is not a federally set limit, the states can set their own standards, but if they deviate from this age limit, they lose federal funding and, for now, none of the states are willing to do so. For this reason, even though in the past individual states have lowered their drinking age, for the foreseeable future the drinking age will remain 21. What does that mean....? Well, for one thing, unless you delay going to college for a few years, you'll be too young to drink until your junior or possibly senior year. That settles that then, no drinking. Case closed. No problem.
"College towns have college students, and college students drink," said Hingham County Commissioner Mark Grubner, who was a student at MSU during the 70's. "People have got to come to grips with the fact that students are going to drink." This is the reality. College students are going to drink. Everyone knows they're going to drink, and all their parents pray to God they don't hurt themselves doing it. They hope that their child is not the one passed out in the corner or the one with the lampshade on their head. They hope they're not the one who wakes up in someone's front yard with no memory of how they got there. Worse yet, they hope beyond hope that they don't get behind the wheel of a car after having those beverages that only a 21 year old can have.
The orientations that I sat through also made something else alarmingly obvious; having admitted to the problem....... that many students were going to drink......... there was a void in the discussions on what responsible alcohol consumption looks like. Even though the consumption of alcohol by students was acknowledged, the correct and safe protocol of this consumption was not addressed; there was no DRINKING 101. There are classes for virtually everything else. You can take a class in tennis, badminton, yoga, basket-weaving, and I hear, even the analysis of pornographic film (not my kids!). Why not responsible consumption?
I thought that since most young people were likely to try alcohol than it would be better that they be taught how to use it safely rather than just winging it. In other words, if we make the assumption that alcohol consumption is a learned behavior, like just about everything else we do, why not have a reference to learn from? Please, don't misunderstand, I'm not encouraging drinking, I'm just trying to be realistic. This issue has been pertinent for many generations and I have yet to find a definitive source document that provided the necessary guidelines about responsible consumption. This handbook is designed to provide those guidelines. It also contains facts about alcohol and its effects on the human body that are important to understand if you decide to drink. Remember, there is no requirement that you drink. Millions of people get by everyday without consuming alcohol. It may not be for you, and that's great! But if you are like the majority of people over the age of 18, you're at least going to try alcohol at some time during your life. This handbook can help you to better understand what to expect if you decide to use alcohol. This book is intended to empower the reader with the practical, factual knowledge required to drink responsibly.
As a professional airline pilot with over 12,ooo hours of flight time I'm intimately familiar with the "eight hours bottle to throttle," regulation set by the FAA. It's a practical standard for the aviation community and it can be an excellent guideline for anyone who drinks alcohol.........
Another great tenet is the guideline of "8 hours bottle to throttle", used in the aviation community. This is a standard protocol that is actually included in the Federal Aviation Regulations. It means that under no circumstances can a commercial airline pilot have any alcohol at all within 8 hours of flight duty; none. That does not mean that a pilot can get roaring drunk, just as long as he stops more than 8 hours prior to duty. Sometimes 8 hours is not nearly enough to recover from a session of irresponsible consumption, but at least it sets a minimum guideline that responsible consumers can use. I think the same guideline can be used by anyone who wants to have a productive day following a night that included enjoying a few drinks. 8 hours bottle to throttle can become 8 hours bottle to Business 101, or 8 hours bottle to Chem. 103. It can be 8 hours bottle to negotiating a big deal or 8 hours prior to getting to work. Remember this protocol, it just makes sense, and can keep you feeling excellent each and every morning.
The real conclusion of this book is: learning to drink responsibly is a requirement for anyone who chooses to drink.
And remember to use TENDER LOVING CARE
T: NOTE THE TIME
L: REMEMBER YOUR LIMITS
C: COUNT YOUR D.E.'s