Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Legally Drunk Party

An experimental, educational & recreational activity
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Hold a party in which guests are given a carefully measured amount of alcohol—just enough to make them legally drunk. This would be both fun and educational.

Guests would wear color-coded armbands to designate their level of participation, e.g.—

Green = non-drinking (minors, designated drivers, observers—anyone who chooses not to participate in the experiment). These people will not be served any alcohol.

Yellow = drinking, but hasn't yet drunk his allotted amount of alcohol. (Guests are free to quit drinking at any time and may remain at this stage.)

Red = has finished drinking his allotted amount. These people will not be served any additional alcohol, at least not until the experiment officially ends, say, at midnight.

The educational aspect of the experience would be in (1) Self-observation—learning what it feels like to be legally drunk. Some people will learn that it is far more than they usually drink; some that it is far less. (2) Observing others, and learning whether you can or can't tell by observation whether someone is drunk.

Guests will be encouraged to play games, especially those that test their coordination, concentration, and reaction time.

Likely participants would include psychologists, psychotherapists, social workers, teachers, counselors, care-givers, law-enforcement officers, bartenders—anyone who might encounter drunk people or problem drinkers in their line of work, and have some responsibility toward or for them.

Jim Bob of Merriam Park, Jul 02 2009

tiny tim http://www.tinytim.org/
Not so small. [ye_river_xiv, Jul 04 2009]

[link]






       //it's impossible to calibrate it this way//
I selflessly offer my elf to be a guinea pig in the calibration experiments.
coprocephalous, Jul 02 2009
  

       Breathalyzers. This will not work if people are panting heavily, though.
mylodon, Jul 02 2009
  

       I go to a party. I drink very little (not an alcohol fan). I marvel at the antics of drunks.   

       Since your method of metering is by 'allotted amount of alcohol' I could get utterly bladdered and retain my yellow arm band.   

       The wearing of the correct arm band depends on the honesty of the individual and is likely to be abused once the alcohol begins to take effect. It is my experience that those who believe they haven't had enough yet can become quite aggressive and would be least likely to respect the arm band protocol.   

       The plan might work as a controlled social experiment, but I wouldn't call it a party.
Twizz, Jul 02 2009
  

       Will this be a pool-party?
theleopard, Jul 02 2009
  

       Am I drunk, or is this exactly the same as about 100 research projects ongoing, all the time?
blissmiss, Jul 02 2009
  

       Yes, the armband thing will get annoying quickly. I'll just put a bunch on my arm at once and cut off the ones I'm not feeling while I figure out how to get a pint from the server lady. I may try hitting on her, or showing her pictures of my broken family.   

       Also, your 'alloted alcohol' is a variable, dependent on how fast one drinks. Slam four shots and you'll teeter over your limit for about half an hour. Most anyways.
daseva, Jul 02 2009
  

       //it's impossible to calibrate it this way// it''s impossible to celebrate this way (as opposed to 'it's impossible to celibate this way', which it's not ... if we can be allowed to coin a verb)   

       What have the outcomes been [blissmiss]? And what have the studies been trying to prove?   

       I presume the main actual outcome would prove that the law is an ass and that 'legally drunk' or 'legally undrunk' status may have a relatively low correlation with outcomes-based measurements (no ... not how often you have to go to the bathroom)   

       New suggestion ... drinking licences. You go along to a suitably qualified testing station to earn your drink-holding certificate which may be used if - in court - you need to prove (or disprove) that you were actually drunk at, above, or below the legal measure.
kindachewy, Jul 02 2009
  

       // above, or below the legal measure. //   

       Given the wide variance in physiological reaction to alcohol, this makes sense. An arbitrary limit means that some individuals who react strongly to alcohol may be unsafe to drive even if well below the legal imit.   

       Or there's the "zero tolerance" approach. Some jurisdictions have tried that.
8th of 7, Jul 02 2009
  

       Prior to the party, dosages should be calibrated to individual participants by having each person repeatedly negotiate an obstacle course while successively consuming additional units of alcohol. The obstacle course should include "quiz stations" to gauge effect on cognitive as well as physical function. Then, to circumvent the rate-of-consumption problem at the party, alcohol should be administered intravenously.
swimswim, Jul 02 2009
  

       [] Interesting idea. My MAIN caveat is the same mistake made repeatedly in like-minded experiments: 'body mass : alcohol mass' ratio aren't considered. Three "clinical" drinks given to Tiny Tim is not the same as the aforementioned three clinical drinks given to Shaquille O'Neil - everything else being equal.   

       But I'd like to volunterr anywayse...
Wily Peyote, Jul 03 2009
  

       I dunno. Tiny Tim was pretty tall and lanky.
ye_river_xiv, Jul 04 2009
  
      
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