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Is New Year's Eve Still the King of Alcohol?

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New Year’s Eve is dead.

It’s not the biggest bar night of the year. It’s not even the biggest drinking night in general.

I base those claims on a (very scientific and statistical) review of the facts.

First, I spent four minutes on internet searches, which brought up a lot of results that say Black Wednesday (the night before Thanksgiving) is the biggest bar night. Other sites list BW as the biggest drinking night, period (whether drinking at bars or at home).

Second, I looked at local drinking establishments I see places that close early this evening so their employees can enjoy the night. My favorite local bar says it’s keeping its regular hours tonight: closing at midnight. You can practically smell the “ho-hum” attitude of these business owners, who are obviously unimpressed with their sales history on NYE.

Third, I polled ten people and they all said they were spending a quiet night at home or getting together with their family to watch football. They’ll be having a few beers, but it won’t be the raucous binge that is Black Wednesday.

So, I officially count New Year's Eve dead. I figure that, at best, it might rank in the top five, behind BW, St. Patrick’s Day, Mardi Gras, Halloween, and, heck, maybe even July 4th and Groundhog Day, such are my powers of intuition from personal experience and six minutes of internet surfing.

But in steps “Womply.” It appears to be an organization that helps small businesses (that’s about all I could learn in the two minutes I cared to dedicate to the question, “What is Womply?”). They’ve ran two articles that claim to have analyzed the data and have concluded that New Year’s Eve is still number one when it comes to alcohol: liquor store sales (BW is third, behind NYE and Christmas Eve) and bar sales (BW is third again, behind NYE and July 3rd).

I suppose I could jump into the pieces and start looking for anomalies (their bar analysis includes “bars and lounges” . . . does that include restaurants that also serve as bars?), but no matter. I’m impressed enough by Womply’s analysis to conclude that perhaps NYE is dead as king of the drinking nights in my niche of the woods but, nationwide, it still reigns.

For me, I did my drinking last night, celebrating the end of a brutal year at the office while cleaning up the debris on my desk and throwing down a few gin and tonics. I’ll no doubt have a few this evening as my Michigan Wolverines try to win their first playoff game, but otherwise, I expect to ring in the new year with a large degree of sobriety, no matter what Womply says.

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