Tuesday, 12 August 2008

John McCain, Paris Hilton and Beer

I'd like to use this post to pose an important question to eminent beer historian Maureen Ogle:

See more Paris Hilton videos at Funny or Die


Is John McCain, born in 1936, old enough to remember "when beer was served in a bucket" as Paris Hilton asserts?

UPDATE
From the comments, Maureen Ogle responds:
Technically, he's not. Buckets ruled back before Prohibition, when 99.9% of beer was sold in kegs and at saloons. There wasn't really any way to "keep" beer at home.

So people either went to the saloon to drink, or they sent their kids there to grab a bucket of carry-out. (Or, people sent a co-worker, since most employers allowed people to drink beer during breaks.)

But when Prohibition ended in 1933, lawmakers created legislation designed to prevent that kind of easy drinking.

At the same time, however, bottled/canned beer became the norm and home refrigerator became commonplace. Bye-bye bucket.

BUT: old habits die hard. In the 1930s and 1940s, many people living in urban, working class neighborhoods still used the bucket for carryout. (Many did not yet have refrigeration and laws are always easier to evade in big cities.)

By the 1950s, the bucket, legal or otherwise, had gone by the wayside.

So, would John McCain remember buckets? Doubtful. He's too young! Now if he'd been born in 1906 . . .

Besides, he was born into the wrong "class." His kind of people definitely didn't do buckets.

1 comment:

Maureen Ogle said...

Yes and no. (How's that for an answer?)

Technically, he's not. Buckets ruled back before Prohibition, when 99.9% of beer was sold in kegs and at saloons. There wasn't really any way to "keep" beer at home.

So people either went to the saloon to drink, or they sent their kids there to grab a bucket of carry-out. (Or, people sent a co-worker, since most employers allowed people to drink beer during breaks.)

But when Prohibition ended in 1933, lawmakers created legislation designed to prevent that kind of easy drinking.

At the same time, however, bottled/canned beer became the norm and home refrigerator became commonplace. Bye-bye bucket.

BUT: old habits die hard. In the 1930s and 1940s, many people living in urban, working class neighborhoods still used the bucket for carryout. (Many did not yet have refrigeration and laws are always easier to evade in big cities.)

By the 1950s, the bucket, legal or otherwise, had gone by the wayside.

So, would John McCain remember buckets? Doubtful. He's too young! Now if he'd been born in 1906 . . .

Besides, he was born into the wrong "class." His kind of people definitely didn't do buckets.

By the way, the Paris video is one of the funniest things I've ever seen in my life. When she's too old to be a Beautiful Young Thing, she can tour the comedy clubs -- talking about the olden days when people still watched reality television ....

PS: I have serious doubts about the use of the word "eminent." That's like saying Paris is presidential.