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10 Things you never knew about beer

Who (among those of legal drinking age, of course) could possibly resist a tall, chilled glass of the drink that makes our world go round? It’s relaxing, it’s fun, and most importantly, it’s delicious. Beer’s been around since at least 6000 BC, which means that a lot of interesting things have happened concerning the golden beverage over the years. Read on.

Fact 1: Perhaps you’ll recognize this situation. Ever redirected an entire road-trip or turned a plan on its head simply in the quest for a pint of the good stuff? If your answer was yes, you’ll be happy to hear that you’re hardly the first to do so.

A diary record shows that the pilgrims on the Mayflower (who founded the colony that would later become the USA) actually intended to go much further south but when their beer supplies ran out, they decided they had gone far enough. Good to know that humans haven’t changed at all in the last 400 years!

Fact 2: Beer is the 2nd most consumed beverage in the world (not counting water, of course). Guinness Beer alone sells over 7 million pints a day and it seems the alcoholic beverage comes second only to tea.

Fact 3: The beer bottle was not invented till 1850. In fact, till then beer drinkers would fill up massive buckets at local beer houses and lug them all the way home. Hey, no pain, no gain!

Fact 4: The first civilization to brew beer was the ancient Babylonians. They took the job a tad too seriously though because if someone brewed a bad batch, their punishment was to be drowned in it. Hey, we can think of worse ways to go!

Fact 5: Cenosillicaphobia is the fear of an empty glass. Though it may seem like a perfectly neat trick invented by some raging alcoholic, it turns out this phobia actually might be a bogus one coined by the intrepid users of urbandictionary.com.

However, the English language is a living, constantly evolving organism and if a word is used often enough, it eventually ends up in dictionaries! Cenosillicaphobia, Cenosillicaphobia, Cenosillicaphobia. There, we’ve done our bit!

Fact 6: Czechs are the world’s biggest beer drinkers, consuming an average of 160 liters a year. The reason is, as most things are, a monetary one. A bottle of beer costs the equivalent of Rs. 10 while even a Coke of the same size costs up to the equivalent of Rs. 30 in the nation. And get this–liter for liter, beer is cheaper than bottled water. Now that’s some party-friendly pricing policy-making!

Fact 7: This one puts Islamic fundamentalist suicide bombers’ belief of finding 72 virgins in heaven (after their deaths) to shame. Ancient Vikings believed that a giant goat was awaiting them in Valhalla (Viking heaven) and this goat’s udders would provide a limitless supply of beer. Forget angels, harps and eternal peace–that’s the heaven we want!

Fact 8: American beer guzzler Steven Petrosino still holds the record for the fastest beer drinking ever even though he set the record as long ago as in 1977. This is hardly surprising considering he drank an entire liter within 1.3 seconds.

Fact 9: Brewed from actual Arctic ice, Antarctic Nail Ale tops all beer lists as the most expensive beer in the world. And at Rs. 32,000 a bottle, we’re far from surprised either. Only 30 bottles (sold only at auctions) have been produced so far and every single rupee goes to a charity that opposes whaling in the Antarctic. So far, only one bottle has actually been purchased.

Fact 10: In the 1940s PBR (a popular beer brand) conducted a massive study to determine what weight of beer would make it perfectly conducive for a housewife to carry home with her groceries. And thus, the 6-pack was born!

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