Monday, November 5, 2007

The Week in Alcohol

We'll know it's a trend when Conrad Black buys the Don Jail Graeme Alford, a former inmate of Australia's Pentridge Prison, (8 years for armed robbery) has purchased his old jail cell there. A section of the prison, decommissioned in 1997, is being converted into a storage facility for rare wine. Alford no longer drinks alcohol.

Good thing Parker didn't call him a New Zealander Documentary filmmaker Jonathan Nossiter (2004's Mondovino) has released his first book, Le Gout et le Pouvoir (roughly, "Taste and Power"). Not unexpectedly, Robert Parker has thrown a fit, calling Nossiter a "narrow-minded zealot" a bigot, and a member of the "scary wine Gestapo". (This may be no more than simple tit-for-tat; two years ago Nossiter accused Parker's partner Pierre-Antoine Rovani of being "a Mussolini apologist, indirectly fascist and anti-semitic, 'monolithic and unscrupulously self-serving.' ")

In a related story, the Museum of Modern art responded to the demand for more Warhols by purchasing a bigger photocopier France has responded to the worldwide growth in demand for Champagne (consumption in India alone grew 126% last year) by expanding the growing area that may market its grapes as Champagne grapes. 40 new villages are to be added to the Champagne AC, an increase of roughly 15%

And that was just in class A study undertaken by the American Public Health Association found that university students who mixed alcohol with energy drinks like Red Bull drank more (and more often), were twice as likely to get injured, ride with a drunk driver, sexually take advantage of another, or themselves be sexually taken advantage of.

On the plus side, sales of Red Bull are down Alcohol consumption in Ireland rose 17% in the last 10 years, according to a recent study by the Ireland Health Research Board. During the same period, hospital admissions for alcohol-related problems nearly doubled, with liver disease rising 147%

My brain hurts With 50% of young New Zealanders admitting to regular binge drinking, the Alcohol Related Brain Injury Australian Services ( ARBIAS ) recently claimed that one in five New Zealanders will eventually suffer serious brain damage from alcohol abuse. "Claims of brain pain will now be taken to top New Zealand health officials as experts, who are meeting in Auckland on Monday to discuss the call for action on the looming crisis." In other news though, New Zealand's abuse of illegal drugs is waning

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