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Tea is so tame. A cocktail is lots more naughty. – Richard Florance, “It: The Usual Play with an Unusual Ending,” in The Smart Set: A Magazine of Cleverness, December 1915
Stay busy, get plenty of exercise, and don’t drink too much. Then again, don’t drink too little. – Herman “Jackrabbit” Smith-Johannsen
To good eating belongs good drinking. – German Proverb
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Always do sober what you said you’d do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut. – Ernest Hemingway
Don’t trust a brilliant idea unless it survives the hangover. – Jimmy Breslin
Our government land costs one dollar and twenty-five cents an acre, and good whiskey two dollars a bottle. How many men die landless who during their lives have swallowed whole townships — trees and all? – Author unknown, c.1878, quoted in Silas X. Floyd, Floyd’s Flowers: or, Duty and Beauty for Colored Children, 1905
I prefer to think that God is not dead, just drunk. – John Marcellus Huston
If you must drink and drive, drink Pepsi. – Author unknown, as seen on a bumper sticker
The first thing in the human personality that dissolves in alcohol is dignity. – Author Unknown
If drinking is interfering with your work, you’re probably a heavy drinker. If work is interfering with your drinking, you’re probably an alcoholic. – Author Unknown
If you know someone who tries to drown their sorrows, you might tell them sorrows know how to swim. – Quoted in P.S. I Love You, compiled by H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
O God, that men
should put an enemy in their mouths to steal away
their brains! that we should, with joy, pleasance
revel and applause, transform ourselves into beasts!
– William Shakespeare, Othello [II, 3, Cassio]
First you take a drink, then the drink takes a drink, then the drink takes you. – Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald
I think a man ought to get drunk at least twice a year just on principle, so he won’t let himself get snotty about it. – Raymond Chandler
A full Vine bending, like an Arch, and under
The blown God Bacchus, fitting on a Hogshead,
His Altar Beer: before that, a plump Vinter
Kneeling, and offering Incense to his Deity…
[A]nd then comes thy Song… The drinking Song…
Drink today and drown all Sorrow,
You shall perhaps not do it to morrow.
Best while you have it use your Breath,
There is no drinking after Death.
Wine works the Heart up, makes the Wit,
There is no Cure ‘gainst Age but it…
Then let us swill, Boys, for our Health;
Who drinks well, loves the Commonwealth.
And he that will to Bed go sober,
Falls with the Leaf still in October.
– Francis Beaumont and John Fletcher, The Bloody Brother; or, Rollo, a Tragedy, 1718 (Act II, Scene II)
Come, landlord, fill a flowing bowl, until it does run over;
To-night we all will merry be, to-morrow we’ll get sober.
– Popular song, c.1700s
If four or five guys tell you that you’re drunk, even though you know you haven’t had a thing to drink, the least you can do is to lie down a little while. – Joseph Schenck
Almost anything can be preserved in alcohol, except health, happiness, and money. – Mary Wilson Little, Reveries of a Paragrapher, 1897Nevertheless my uncle Benjamin was not what you lightly term a drunkard, make no mistake about that. He was an epicurean who pushed philosophy to the point of intoxication,—that was all…. He loved wine, not for itself, but for that short-lived madness which it brings…. he maintained that a fasting man was a man still asleep; that intoxication would have been one of the greatest blessings of the Creator, if it had not injured the head, and that the only thing that made man superior to the brute was the faculty of getting drunk. – Claude Tillier (1801–1844), My Uncle Benjamin: A Humorous, Satirical, and Philosophical Novel, 1843, translated from the French by Benjamin R. Tucker, 1890
Once, during Prohibition, I was forced to live for days on nothing but food and water. – W.C. Fields
It is most absurdly said, in popular language, of any man, that he is disguised in liquor; for, on the contrary, most men are disguised by sobriety. – Thomas de Quincy, Confessions of an English Opium-Eater, 1856
Come, brothers, come, and drink with me,
See how the glass is beaming!
One bright unclouded hour will we
Spend in delicious dreaming!…
Fleeting is every earthly joy,
Wait not till time its bloom destroy,
But pluck the rose, nor pause to think,
– Theodor Körner (1791–1813), “A Drinking Song,” A Selection from the Poems and Dramatic Works of Theodor Körner, 1850, translated from the German by an unnamed female translator #happyhour
The harsh, useful things of the world, from pulling teeth to digging potatoes, are best done by men who are as starkly sober as so many convicts in the death-house, but the lovely and useless things, the charming and exhilarating things, are best done by men with, as the phrase is, a few sheets in the wind. – H.L. Mencken, Prejudices, Fourth Series, 1924
Your body is a temple, but keep the spirits on the outside. – Author unknown
Here’s to our guest —
Don’t let him rest,
But keep his elbow bending.
‘Tis time to drink —
Full time to think
Tomorrow — when you’re mending.
– “To Our Guest,” Toasts for the Times in Pictures and Rhymes by John William Sargent, 1904
The bad taste of alcohol is there to clue in your body that you shouldn’t drink it. Luckily I don’t fall for “appeal to nature” fallacies. – Corey Mohler, @existentialcoms
Here’s to a temperance supper,
With water in glasses tall,
And coffee and tea to end with—
And me not there at all.
– A Plate of Toasts, collected and passed along by Edwin Osgood Grover, 1916
I feel sorry for people who don’t drink. When they wake up in the morning, that’s as good as they’re going to feel all day. – Frank Sinatra
A mere pause from thinking!
– George Gordon, Lord Byron, The Deformed Transformed
Rum is a flatterer, making fools and lunatics. – James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Seven Seventy Seven Sensations, 1897
I like to keep a bottle of stimulant handy in case I see a snake, which I also keep handy. – W.C. Fields
Woman first tempted man to eat; he took to drinking of his own accord. – Four Hundred Laughs: Or, Fun Without Vulgarity, compiled and edited by John R. Kemble, 1902
Upon occasion we should go as far as intoxication…. Drink washes cares away, stirs the mind from its lowest depths…. But in liberty moderation is wholesome, and so it is in wine…. We ought not indulge too often, for fear the mind contract a bad habit, yet it is right to draw it toward elation and release and to banish dull sobriety for a little. – Lucius Annaeus Seneca, “On Tranquillity of Mind”
Drinking makes such fools of people, and people are such fools to begin with, that it’s compounding a felony. – Robert Benchley
I hate drunkenness; but I do not hate the drunkard. If any man should have our friendship it is the man who has failed to be a friend to himself. The fact is, the victim of strong drink often has all the virtues—including high intelligence and a tender, sympathetic heart—and yet when the Demon Drink clutches him, his will is paralyzed, and Satan is in the saddle…. The worst about strong drink has never been told. It cannot be told—it escapes the limitations of language. – Elbert Hubbard, “Can You Afford It?”, Cosmopolitan, May 1913
Champagne, if you are seeking the truth, is better than a lie detector. It encourages a man to be expansive, even reckless, while lie detectors are only a challenge to tell lies successfully. – Graham Greene
I’ll stick with gin. Champagne is just ginger ale that knows somebody. – MAS*H, Hawkeye, “Ceasefire,” 1973
Here’s to Champagne, the drink divine,
That makes us forget our troubles;
‘Tis made of a dollar’s worth of wine,
And three dollars’ worth of bubbles.
– Waes Hael: A Collection of Toasts Crisp and Well Buttered, by Edithe Lea Chase and W.E.P. French, 1903
Every time a champagne bottle uncorks, a party angel gets its wings. – Terri Guillemets
One reason I don’t drink is that I want to know when I am having a good time. – Lady Astor
I like liquor — its taste and its effects — and that is just the reason why I never drink it. – Stonewall Jackson
There are two reasons for drinking: one is, when you are thirsty, to cure it; the other, when you are not thirsty, to prevent it…. Prevention is better than cure. – Thomas Love Peacock, Melincourt, 1817
If all be true that I do think,
There are five reasons we should drink:
Good wine—a friend—or being dry—
Or lest we should be by and by—
Or any other reason why.
– Père Sirmond, c.1595, translated by Henry Aldrich
The chief reason for drinking is the desire to behave in a certain way, and to be able to blame it on alcohol. – Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic’s Notebook, 1960
I envy people who drink—at least they know what to blame everything on. – Oscar Levant
No animal ever invented anything so bad as drunkenness — or so good as drink. – Lord Chesterton
Work is the curse of the drinking classes. – Oscar Wilde
Even though a number of people have tried, no one has yet found a way to drink for a living. – Jean Kerr
Oh, you hate your job? Why didn’t you say so? There’s a support group for that. It’s called everybody, and they meet at the bar. – Drew Carey
Hard work, worry and whiskey are the friends of man. – Martin H. Fischer (1879–1962)
We borrowed golf from Scotland as we borrowed whiskey. Not because it is Scottish, but because it is good. – Horace Hutchinson
Drink ’til the ground looks blue. – Thomas Heywood, Philocothonista, 1635[spelling modernized —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]
T is for Temperance, Tremens, and Thirst.
You get the last two if you don’t have the first.
– James Clarence Harvey, “A Drink Primer,” Over the Nuts & Wine, 1906
Drunkenness is temporary suicide. – Bertrand Russell, The Conquest of Happiness
It’s like an angel crying on your tongue. – The Mentalist, “My Bloody Valentine,” written by Bruno Heller and Tom Szentgyorgyi, spoken by the character Patrick Jane, about alcohol
Drinking makes you happy with your body the way it is. – Philip Rosenthal & Mike Royce, Everybody Loves Raymond, “Not So Fast” (season 9, episode 2), original airdate 2004 September 27th, spoken by the character Robert Barone, based on the comedy of Ray Romano
…why so very, very merry?
Is it purity of conscience, or your one-and-seven sherry?
– W.S. Gilbert, “Ferdinando and Elvira,” The “Bab” Ballads: Much Sound and Little Sense, 1860s
Sobriety is either the love of health, or an incapacity for debauch. – François VI de la Rochefoucault (1613–1680)
Here’s to conscience. May it wake up to hear us toast it, and then go to sleep again. – The Loving Cup: Original Toasts by Original Folks, edited by Wilbur D. Nesbit, 1909
Everybody should believe in something; I believe I’ll have another drink. – Author Unknown
Memory impairment: the free prize at the bottom of every vodka bottle. – Big Bang Theory, “The Agreement Dissection” (season 4, episode 21, original airdate April 28, 2011), written by Lorre, Prady, Molaro, Kaplan, Goetsch, and Gorodetsky, spoken by the character Sheldon Cooper
I hate a drinking companion with a memory. – Martial, quoted by Lucian #happyhour
It takes only one drink to get me drunk. The trouble is, I can’t remember if it’s the thirteenth or the fourteenth. – George Burns
A man ought not never to get drunk above the neck. – Author unknown
As soon as William returned, all poesy flew away. He brought me the heavy odor of the barroom, and his kisses, which smelt of gin, quickly broke the wings of my dream. – Octave Mirbeau, A Chambermaid’s Diary / Le Journal d’une Femme de Chambre, 1900, translated from the French by Benjamin R. Tucker
There are human bodies which, instead of throwing off alcohol that is taken into the system, seemingly catch and retain it. There are traps in the tissues that hold the toxin; and instead of getting rid of it, these traps set up a fever, a thirst, a vain unrest, and a mad desire for more drink. – Elbert Hubbard, “Can You Afford It?”, Cosmopolitan, May 1913
Alcohol is the anesthesia by which we endure the operation of life. – George Bernard Shaw
Now don’t say you can’t swear off drinking; it’s easy, I’ve done it a thousand times. – W.C. Fields
Is there no way to stop the brain from thinking
Gin rickey thoughts and metaphysic highballs—
And yet how simple ’twas to swear off drinking
When one could get quite plastered to the eyeballs…
I’m Bacchanalian, bibulous, and wasted;
My lofty thoughts have sunk to booze and bunk
My jug of wine was full but rarely tasted;
Lo now, I thirst—a wretched mental drunk!…
With dust as dry as Gobi in my flagon…
I’m blistering and bleaching on the wagon.
– H. Lyman Armes, “As a Man Thinketh: A Pantoum,” Judge, 1920 July 31st [Please accept my apologies for ruining the pantoum format by shortening the poem for quoting. —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]
I believe that when life gives you lemons, you make lemonade — and then try to find someone whose life is giving them vodka, and have a party. – Ron White
S is for Silly, the name that fits you,
If, after a drink, you are crazy for two.
– James Clarence Harvey, “A Drink Primer,” Over the Nuts & Wine, 1906
They speak of my drinking, but never think of my thirst. – Scottish proverb
Here’s to beefsteak when you’re hungry,
Whiskey when you are dry,
Greenbacks when you are busted,
And Heaven when you die!
– A Plate of Toasts, collected and passed along by Edwin Osgood Grover, 1916
The worst thing about some men is that when they are not drunk they are sober. – William Butler Yeats
It shrinks my liver… it pickles my kidneys… but what does it do to my mind? It tosses the sandbags overboard so the balloon can soar. Suddenly I’m above the ordinary. I’m confident — supremely confident. I’m walking a tightrope over Niagara Falls. I’m one of the great ones. I’m Michelangelo molding the beard of Moses. I’m van Gogh painting pure sunlight. I’m Horowitz playing the Emperor Concerto. I’m John Barrymore before the movies, got him by the throat. I’m Jesse James and his two brothers — all three of them. I’m W. Shakespeare. – Charles Brackett & Billy Wilder, The Lost Weekend, 1945, based on the novel by Charles Jackson (1903–1968), 1944, spoken by the character Don Birnam
Alcohol is a misunderstood vitamin. – P.G. Wodehouse
Can you afford to run the risk of ruin by dallying with this arch-enemy that has laid so many low? We have been led to think that to drink is manly, and to get in a condition where common sense has fled and the tongue is tangled is funny…. The use of strong drink is neither manly, nor amusing, and no one who loves you or is interested in your welfare would think so. – Elbert Hubbard, “Can You Afford It?”, Cosmopolitan, May 1913
The demon of the wine cup had fled, and reason once more asserted her right to control. – Silas X. Floyd (1869–1923), “Home, Sweet Home,” Floyd’s Flowers: or, Duty and Beauty for Colored Children, 1905
Awake is vertical, asleep horizontal, and drunk is dizzyingly diagonal. – Terri Guillemets
A woman drove me to drink and I never even had the courtesy to thank her. – W.C. Fields
I drink exactly as much as I want, and one drink more. – H.L. Mencken
He calls for wine: ‘A health!’ quoth he, as if
He had been abroad, carousing to his mates
After a storm…
– William Shakespeare, Taming of the Shrew [III, 2, Gremio]
Zen martini: A martini with no vermouth at all. And no gin, either. – P.J. O’Rourke
What is it about a beautiful sunny afternoon, with the birds singing and the wind rustling through the leaves, that makes you want to get drunk? – Jack Handey
The drunk mind speaks the sober heart. – Author Unknown
I don’t think I’ve ever drunk champagne before breakfast before. With breakfast on several occasions, but never before before. – From the movie Breakfast at Tiffany’s, 1961, screenplay by George Axelrod, based on the novella by Truman Capote, spoken by the character Paul Varjak
I’m going to be around until the Atomic Energy Commission finds a safe place to bury my liver. – Phil Harris
Know thyself, especially thyself after a couple of drinks. – Robert Brault, rbrault.blogspot.com
Drink washes off the daub and discovers the man. – Thomas Fuller’s Gnomologia, no.1330 [spelling and capitalization modernized —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]
Drunkenness is nothing but voluntary madness. – Seneca
Whoever takes just plain ginger ale soon gets drowned out of the conversation. – Kin Hubbard
If we take habitual drunkards as a class, their heads and their hearts will bear an advantageous comparison with those of any other class. There seems ever to have been a proneness in the brilliant and warm-blooded to fall in to this vice. The demon of intemperance ever seems to have delighted in sucking the blood of genius and generosity. – Abraham Lincoln, address to the Washington Temperance Society, Springfield, Illinois, 22 February 1842
I drink only to make my friends seem interesting. – Don Marquis
Be wary of strong drink. It can make you shoot at tax collectors… and miss. – Robert Heinlein
A bottle in front of me is like a frontal lobotomy. – Attributed to Dorothy Parker
I’d prefer to have a full bottle in front of me than a full frontal lobotomy. – Attributed to Frank Nicholson
Let’s drink to hope! And hope to drink. – Terri Guillemets, “Corkscrew,” 2009
Why don’t you slip out of those wet clothes and into a dry Martini? – Robert Benchley
nightcapped, drunk, lit, hammered
a twinkling mist of pleasure
– Terri Guillemets, “Imbibed,” 2019, blackout poetry created from Gustave Flaubert, Madame Bovary, 1857, pages 244–245 (Penguin 2003 paperback, translated by Geoffrey Wall)
When Flemming saw the little streams, sliding down the mountainside, and leaping, all life and gladness, he would fain have clasped them in his arms and been their playmate, and revelled with them in their freedom and delight. Yet he was weary with the day’s journey, and entered the village more like a way-worn traveller than an enthusiastic poet. As he went up the tavern steps, he said in his heart, with the Italian Aretino: “He who has not been at a tavern knows not what a paradise it is. O holy tavern! O miraculous tavern!—holy, because no carking cares are there, nor weariness, nor pain…” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, “Foot-Travelling,” Hyperion: A Romance, 1839 (Book III, Chapter II) [a little altered —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]
I don’t get drunk — I get awesome. – Author Unknown
Where ever I go, there I am. Drunk. – Rita E. Torres
When I read about the evils of drinking, I gave up reading. – Henny Youngman
The chief incentives to indulge in strong drink arise from imperfect nutrition, loss of sleep, and lack of exercise in the open air. These things bring about a condition where worry becomes a habit, and drink follows in a search for relief. – Elbert Hubbard, “Can You Afford It?”, Cosmopolitan, May 1913
Here’s to a long life and a merry one
A quick death and an easy one
A pretty girl and an honest one
A cold beer and another one!
– Author Unknown
My grandmother is over eighty and still doesn’t need glasses. Drinks right out of the bottle. – Henny Youngman
When I’m drinking the world makes so much sense, but as soon as I sober up it returns to chaos and confusion. – Terri Guillemets
I have taken more out of alcohol than alcohol has taken out of me. – Winston Churchill
Of the demonstrably wise there are but two: those who commit suicide, & those who keep their reasoning faculties atrophied with drink. – Mark Twain, 1898
Teetotalers lack the sympathy and generosity of men that drink. – W.H. Davies
Brandy, n. A cordial composed of one part thunder-and-lightning, one part remorse, two parts bloody murder, one part death-hell-and-the-grave and four parts clarified Satan. – Ambrose Bierce
I’m not an alcoholic. Alcoholics go to meetings. I’m a drunk. We go to parties. – Author Unknown
If food hath slain its thousands, then drink has slain its tens of thousands. – William Kitchiner, Directions for Invigorating and Prolonging Life, 1831
Irish queer: a fellow who prefers women to drink. – Seán Ó Faoláin
Take life with a grain of salt, a slice of lime, and a shot of tequila. – Author Unknown
– Ogden Nash, “Reflection on Ice-Breaking,” Hard Lines, 1931
If you drink, don’t drive. Don’t even putt. – Dean Martin
Life’s a waste of time, time’s a waste of life so let’s all get wasted and have the time of our life. – Author unknown
Join me — one little jigger of dreams. – Charles Brackett & Billy Wilder, The Lost Weekend, 1945, based on the novel by Charles Jackson (1903–1968), 1944, spoken by the character Don Birnam
A herd of buffalo can only move as fast as the slowest buffalo. And when the heard is hunted, it is the lowest and weakest ones at the back that are killed first. This natural selection is good for the herd as a whole, because the general speed and health of the whole group keeps improving by the regular killing of the weakest members. In much the same way, the human brain can only operate as fast as the slowest brain cells. Now, as we know, excessive intake of alcohol kills brain cells. But naturally, it attacks the slowest and weakest brain cells first. In this way, regular consumption of beer eliminates the weaker brain cells, making the brain a faster and more efficient machine. And that is why you always feel smarter after a few beers. – Author unknown
The nut-brown ale and the fine old gin
Right pleasantly they do suck.
– Charles Stuart Calverley, “Striking,” Verses and Translations, 1862
In truth, the danger of drink, to Americans, is more hazardous than to any other people. We have an intensity of “nerves” beyond that of any other nation that has ever existed. – Elbert Hubbard, “Can You Afford It?”, Cosmopolitan, May 1913
Health — what my friends are always drinking to before they fall down. – Phyllis Diller
[O]ne sip of this
Will bathe the drooping spirits in delight
Beyond the bliss of dreams.
– John Milton
No poems can please for long or live that are written by water-drinkers. – Horace (Quintus Horatius Flaccus), Satires
Everyone who drinks is not a poet. Some of us drink because we’re not poets. – From the movie Arthur
How come if alcohol kills millions of brain cells, it never killed the ones that made me want to drink? – Author Unknown
Please someone tell me—
am I actually demented,
or just well-fermented?
– Terri Guillemets, “Tempus insaniam,” 1996
Vodka is just awesome water. – Author Unknown
One is all right, two is too many, three is not enough. – James Thurber, 1960 [Of martinis. —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]
Drink the first. Sip the second slowly. Skip the third. – Knute Rockne
The first glass is a sedative, the second a psychologist, the third glass an excuse, and the fourth a lobotomy. – Terri Guillemets
For fear that one drink will be lonesome, take another to keep it company, and another to keep peace between them.
One glass is wholesome,
Two glasses toothsome,
Three glasses blithesome,
Four glasses fulsome,
Five glasses noisome,
Six glasses quarrelsome,
Seven glasses darksome.
– A Book of Old Songs, Healths, Toasts, Sentiments, and Wise Sayings Pertaining to the Bond of Good Fellowship, 1901
A few drams make a drunkard, a few drunkards make a dram-shop, and many dram-shops damn a nation. – James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Seven Seventy Seven Sensations, 1897
If you are young and you drink a great deal it will spoil your health, slow your mind, make you fat — in other words, turn you into an adult. – P.J. O’Rourke
Never cry over spilt milk. It could’ve been whiskey. – “Pappy” Maverick, in Maverick
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