Monday, August 23, 2010

Alcohol in the news: Downtown bars offer what Campustown cannot

From the Daily Illini

Downtown bars offer what Campustown cannot

It's an opinion piece... so take it for that.

But despite the advantages of a campus bar’s out-and-out collegiate atmosphere, downtown is the better place for drinking. The selection of draft beers is far more varied and enticing downtown. Foreign and craft brews, or even a house brew, can be had. Of campus bars, only Murphy’s approaches the same kind of wide selection.

The cash-strapped college student may be wary of the more expensive drinks, but this is nothing to fret about. The final tab often comes out the same, as downtown is a place to enjoy fewer, but better, drinks. To use the over-used idiom, quality over quantity.
You will get more flavor from a $5 Founders Breakfast Stout (at Radio Maria) than you will get from $5 worth of Bud Light. You will probably also get drunk quicker. Since the intended audience for this piece is the college student, they probably don't know that even though it's a pint, it's a sipping (not a chugging) beer. Chug two of those for $10 and you will have a long walk back to campus.

Downtown’s biggest advantage is its character. Though small, downtown is a cozy area that manages to be at once urban and small-town. With the assorted brick buildings and the few streets of cafes, music shops and bars, downtown feels more like a genuine social environment. It is in downtown that an inkling occurs — just an inkling — of the idea that Champaign just might be a city after all.
This opinion was written by Charles Tabb. (oddly, there seem to be two Charles Tabb's on facebook at U of I, one is a law professor, the other is a student. This was probably written by the student). I dislike like the end of the previous paragraph.

In this opinion piece, Mr. Tabb, propagates the myth of Ben Franklin.

Maybe Benjamin Franklin had 2010 college students in mind (maybe) when he famously said, “Beer is living proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.”
Ben Franklin never said that. Benjamin Franklin liked wine.

Here's a well written blog about it.

Dr. Franklin was, however, a wine drinker, and he wrote--
We hear of the conversion of water into wine at the marriage in Cana as of a miracle. But this conversion is, through the goodness of God, made every day before our eyes. Behold the rain which descends from heaven upon our vineyards; there it enters the roots of the vines, to be changed into wine; a constant proof that God loves us, and loves to see us happy. The miracle in question was only performed to hasten the operation, under circumstances of present necessity, which required it. --Letter to Abbé Morellet (1779)
Here's a nice article on the subject.

Back to the article.

Ultimately, students choose campus bars or downtown bars based on what they’re looking for. This much is obvious. We can get the excess and the easy socialization on campus. But for those of us seeking a better aura and setting, as well as happier taste buds, downtown is the ideal way to booze for an evening.
This he gets right.

So, students, if you want good beer and good mixed drinks, come downtown. When you finish spending your parents money, you might come looking for a job there.

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