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    Moving Up the Charts...

    Hartford recently placed #68 on list of Men's Health's America's Drunkest Cities. #68? You’re just not trying hard enough, Hartford! The Men’s Health list ranked 100 American cities  in terms of liver disease (which may or may not be related to alcohol), most binge drinking (for those who admit it), most death from DUI crashes (always a sobering statistic), most DUI arrests and least stringent DUI laws (which seems somewhat contradictory).

    Hartford was the only CT city on the list, which apparently is not a compilation of the 100 worst cities, because the magazine gave out grades ranging from F to A+ based on their scoring criteria, and if you live in CT you know that other cities like Bridgeport and New Haven would likely score worse than Hartford because there just ain’t that much nightlife here. Also curious is the fact that places like Newark, NJ and Cleveland, OH, two cities with much more reason to drink heavily than Hartford, placed better on the list. Boston, MA topped the charts with an A+ rating as the least drunken city, meaning whoever created this poll never went to a Red Sox game. Now if you add “number of fatalities from falling drunk out of the grandstands”, Beantown performs far worse on the charts.

    The problem with a list like this is that it gives the illusion that these are the 100 drunkest cities in the country, and you have to dig into the statistics to find that this isn't really what Men's Health is saying.  You don't give a city an A+ rating if it's one of the worse 100, right? But some dumb schmuck lawmaker or reporter is going to take a glance at this list (like the Hartford Courant did) and say, OMG, we're on "The List"!!! We must be doing something wrong!!! And the next thing you know, everyone's worked up into a tizzy about it, passing even more laws, running more roadblocks, spending more money, etc. Meanwhile, Men's Health magazine is publishing more lists on the same day as this one, including one entitled "The 40 Best and Worst Beers". Hmmm. Let's try them all and move up on The List!




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