From the Magazine: Bootlegging Revisited
Written by Bwog Staff
In the latest issue of the Blue & White, contributor Michael Adame chronicles the prohibition. Yeah, we know you still have some in your fridge.
There’s not much more to be said about Four Loko; blogs and newspapers alike have breathlessly chronicled the overly social beverage’s quick march into oblivion. In the depths of this frigid winter, Four Loko has vanished, and we are from here on out frozen and alone.
And yet a dash of hope remains. Several enterprising freshmen (who, for fear of retaliation from authorities legal, academic, and familial, remain unnamed) recently organized a rescue expedition to a local distributor of the drink. Suitcases in tow, they bought “cases upon cases on the cheap” as a preventative measure ensuring future “shwasty fun,” as one hoarder crowed. The group espouses a particularly topical brand of libertarianism, decrying what they see as unacceptable overreaching of an unaccountable government. “It should not be up to the government to decide what is and is not good for us to put into our bodies,” a Four Loko-ite explained. “We should be able to make our own decisions based on personal responsibility and common sense. Four Loko is composed of FDA-approved substances. In a sense, if it is banned, it seems logical to ban other things that are not good for us in large doses—Big Macs, Sonic Blizzards, John Jay food, etc. Why is the government not banning these things?” She also added that to ban anything that is so “fizzy, fast and fruity” is exceedingly nefarious.
After the Four Loko ban went into effect, one fraternity hosted a party commemorating the drink’s reign on campus. These thrifty brothers also deployed wheeled suitcases and backpacks on a border-crossing Loko run, but refused to divulge the source of their secret stash. A spokesman for the party (CC ’13, name withheld as, “My mom reads Bwog!”) told this reporter, perhaps justifying the nature of the evening, “Four Loko deserves a place in everyone’s household. This is America. Banning it here, it will only increase binge drinking. Plus, it forces us to go to Connecticut or New Jersey. New Jersey!”
New Jersey aside, there’s something funny about the nature of these protests and the way they perfectly mimic what passes as America’s latest culture war. In a poetic twist, the Columbians up in arms aren’t quite the lefties of yore; instead, they more closely resemble the Tea Partiers, unhappy with airport security procedures and the authoritarian behavior of the Food and Drug Administration.
Perhaps this strict small-government logic would take hold on campus if the drink in question weren’t so, you know, disgusting. While one generation finds in the ban inspiration for their age appropriate anti-authority rallies, more experienced members on campus view this hoarding and mourning as utterly boring. Rosario Quiroz, CC ‘11, offers that despite her reputation as “the go-to person for Four Loko in my group of friends…in all honesty, it does not do much for me.” She does admit that since the announcement of the ban she has Lok’d up on the sweet nectar at least twice, taking advantage of an 8-for-$20 deal. As student desperation grew, driving up prices in neighborhood bodegas, Quiroz balked and stopped hoarding (although her roommate does maintain a closet for this exact purpose). “I refuse to pay more than $2.50 for the drink. [It] was disgusting but convenient. R.I.P. Four Loko…I’m ready to get back to vodka.”
And so perhaps this is how it all ends: radical dissidence gives way to cold, hard capitalism, while the faithful stock up as if for the end of the world. The rest of us, meanwhile, return to a familiar alternative: the $12.99 handle of Nikolai from International.