“*gets hit by lightning* *chugs a beer* Don’t worry guys, I’m good.”
Most history curriculums are pretty bad at telling us about the crazy things that have actually happened in the world, if you think about it. Sure, McCarthyism during the Cold War is “something we should know” but how come no one talks about the time we tried to build a military base on the moon in 1959? Hell, even when history tries to get edgy (like, for instance, the existence of Teddy Roosevelt) it somehow manages to leave out some of the best parts (like how his daughter was a pet-snake keeping badass).
This goes double for the history of baseball. We know about Babe Ruth and his philandering, boozy ways, but we don’t know about the pure insanity that was Charlie Sweeney. Likewise, everyone and their mother knows at least the name “Cy Young” when it comes to pitchers, but was Cy Young an alcoholic who once was struck by lightning during a game that he stayed in and finished? We didn’t think so.
So we here at America Fun Fact of the Day have decided to do history a favor and help them spice things up a bit by telling you a little bit about Ray Caldwell, one of the most badass pitchers to ever play professional baseball, and one of the few people who can give Charlie Sweeney a run for his money.
Ray Caldwell: The Alcoholic Lightning Rod of Major League Baseball
“Wait, if I’m not on this list, then it’s clearly bullshit.”
~Every AFFotD staff member
Alcohol is a lot like sex—90% of the population really enjoys it, and they’re all kinda made uncomfortable by the 10% that doesn’t. We at America Fun Fact of the Day make it our mission to celebrate alcohol and the Americans who drink it. For example, everyone reading this has consumed alcohol at some point within the past week—we managed to make a teetotaler firewall that automatically directs people that don’t drink to the google image results page for the search “third degree burn + penis.”
We of course celebrate alcohol in its many incarnations here, as well as the great consumers of alcohol. Naturally, America is a great nation of great drinkers, and trying to find, say, the ten best drinkers in American history would be a foolish act of hubris, almost offensive to the very same Americans you are attempting to tribute. So let’s list the ten greatest drinkers in American history.
The 10 Greatest Drinkers in American History
Posted in Alcohol, Giver of Life, American Heroes, Drinkers
Tagged Alcohol, America, American History, American Presidents, Andrew Johnson, Babe Ruth, Charles Bukowski, drinkers, Edgar Allan Poe, Ernest Hemingway, Frank Sinatra, heroes, Jack Daniels, Jack Kerouac, Jerry Thomas, Ulysses S. Grant, Wade Boggs, Wade Boggs Drinking
“Jack Kerouac drank himself to death, and I just ain’t that high.”
We don’t talk about American writers too often because, well to be honest, a distressingly high percentage of our staff has never read anything longer than a Jack Daniels label. Yes, we rocked you some Ernest Hemingway knowledge way back when, but come on. Look at the guy. Doesn’t Hemingway look like the type of man whose ghost you’d not want to piss off?
That being said, there is one writer in particular who was badass enough that he was able to warrant his own fun fact even though our 1950’s predecessors virulently hated the social group he inspired. A man who didn’t so much “write books” as he did “describe his drug and booze fueled crime sprees.” A true American who drank so much his stomach exploded.
This man, of course, is Jack Kerouac.
“Fuck you, literature, here’s some Kerouac coming right atchya.”
“It’s Miller Time, motherfuckers. It’s ALWAYS Miller Time.”
Baseball is America’s pastime in the same way that Bowling is a way of life for rural Midwestern towns. The actual sport itself depends greatly on everyone else getting drunk. If you ever had a professional baseball game that didn’t serve beer, Americans would start rioting faster than a bunch of British hooligans after their soccer team gets relegated. As a result, baseball players themselves have to go out of their way to let you know how American they are. In a league full of Neifi Perezes, the Babe Ruth-like figures are hard to come by.
Even today’s superstars leave something lacking. Yes, Derek Jeter was sleeping with Buddy Garrity’s daughter, but wasn’t A-Rod seeing dinosaur-Madonna? That’s a bad way to go. Think about that. The richest baseball player in the history of the game was, at one point, dating… This.
Fortunately, every once in a while, a true American is born, and instead of deciding to become a fighter pilot or mixologist, he chooses the path of baseball, and figures, if you’re going to do something well, might as well do something drunk. That man may come along only once in a generation, and our generation’s American baseball hero happens to be Hall of Famer, and Miller Lite enthusiast, Wade Boggs.
Pictured here, during the physical act of lovemaking
“No more rhymes, now, I mean it.”
“Anyone want a peanut?”
~Seriously you guys, how good was The Princess Bride?
We at the AFFotD offices often have to swallow quite a modicum of our pride when we’re encountered by foreigners who accomplish American deeds. After all, you don’t have to be a born American to become a governor of one of the nation’s most populous states. Or to knock up the help. So that’s why, when we were watching The Princess Bride in our weekly “watching a chick flick that is actually totally acceptable to watch” night, we figured it was time that we gave proper deference to a Frenchmananoghieipghepwaighpae.
Sorry, the temp we had typing that spontaneously combusted- we have our keyboard wired to set fire whenever something positive is said about people from that…F country. But yes, we’re here to salute Andre the Giant, who did enough amazing American things in American, that we posthumously have declared him an American. Because we’re running out of interns to explode, and we want to take credit for him. So from now on, his birth will be described in “Georgia” instead of “Grenoble, France.” Because you have no idea how much Andre the Giant could drink.
Posted in Athletes, Drinkers, France
Tagged Alcohol, America, Andre the Giant, Andre the Giant has a Posse, Hulk Hogan, Killer Khan, Obama, Princess Bride, Wrestling
“Dude…I’m too tired to be mad at you.”
~J. Wilson’s Liver
Every so often, our research department comes across an article headline that screams “America.” We usually look for certain buzz words. “Alcohol.” “Punching Animals.” “Man Causes Forest Fire.” The typical American-friendly topics. That’s why, when we stumbled across this article, we saw America pouring out of every letter of the headline.
“Beer-Only Fast Ends With Bacon Smoothie.”
…Sorry, give us a moment, there’s a little bit of America in our eye…we just need to regain our composure…
Obviously, this was a story that required all the due deference and measured realism that only a staff of zealous Americans with drinking problems and a penchant for dick jokes could truly tackle, so we’ve arrived on the scene to give a brief summary of these actions that sound so American that they made the skeleton of George Washington just shotgun a beer.
Posted in Drinkers
Tagged America, Ash Wednesday, Bacon, Bacon Smoothie, Beer, Binge Drinking, Catholicism, George WAshington, Iowa, J. Wilson, Lent, Newman's Day, Singe, Singe Drinking
“I’ll get ya drunk faster than a pie’ll get yanked from a windowsill.”
~Marvin “Popcorn” Sutton
While the America Fun Fact of the Day offices break numerous laws, regulations, and religious commandments on a daily basis (Hell, just to get into our lobby you have to punch the captured endangered Condor that we have caged up as a door handle) we tend to find it unnerving when our activities that we believe to be “legal” are, in fact, not. In this case, apparently moonshining is illegal. Not only is it illegal, it’s been explicitly illegal since the 19th century. This was conveniently overlooked by the man who helped us install our moonshining operation, Marvin “Popcorn” Sutton, who was even more American than we could have possibly imagined. And that’s saying something, because he looked like this.
That beard is so glorious that OTHER beards live in his beard.