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  #1  
Old 05-06-2006, 06:16 AM
gitfiddle gitfiddle is offline
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How much listerine would you have to drink to get drunk?

I was swishing my mouth out with listerine last night, remembering that I once heard that listerine wasn't allowed at Betty Ford clinics, and wondering how someone could actually drink the stuff. When you consider it, the aftertaste of listerine is a lot like taking a shot of whiskey, though.

So, how much listerine would someone have to drink to get drunk? What "proof" is listerine? (if that makes sense). Are there other disagreable side-effects to actually drinking listerine? Does it tear up your stomach?
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  #2  
Old 05-06-2006, 06:32 AM
Baker Baker is offline
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I can give no cite, just an observation.

I work in a library, and it's warm in the winter, cool in the summer. So we get a few homeless folks that hang out during the day. Most are no trouble.

But there was one guy, a real drunk, who drank Listerine. Cheaper than booze I guess. He passed out in a chair, and security found a big bottle of Listerine in his coat. So maybe that's the answer, the large size. He got thrown out of the library more than once, but after that incident(in which he also soiled the chair) he was permanently banned.
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  #3  
Old 05-06-2006, 08:40 AM
Qadgop the Mercotan Qadgop the Mercotan is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Baker
I can give no cite, just an observation.

I work in a library, and it's warm in the winter, cool in the summer. So we get a few homeless folks that hang out during the day. Most are no trouble.

But there was one guy, a real drunk, who drank Listerine. Cheaper than booze I guess. He passed out in a chair, and security found a big bottle of Listerine in his coat. So maybe that's the answer, the large size. He got thrown out of the library more than once, but after that incident(in which he also soiled the chair) he was permanently banned.
Listerine is 54 proof, or 27 percent alcohol. That's a pretty good concentration of the stuff. 1 and a half shots of listerine will deliver as much buzz as one shot of 80 proof whiskey.
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  #4  
Old 05-06-2006, 08:44 AM
LanceShetrompf LanceShetrompf is offline
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When I was in the Marines, there were guys in boot camp who got caught drinking Listerine and small amounts would give them a buzz. But this is also after going months without drinking, so their tolerance was very low. So one shot would probably equate to a few beers if it were 54 proof.
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  #5  
Old 05-06-2006, 10:36 AM
chaoticbear chaoticbear is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LanceShetrompf
When I was in the Marines, there were guys in boot camp who got caught drinking Listerine and small amounts would give them a buzz. But this is also after going months without drinking, so their tolerance was very low. So one shot would probably equate to a few beers if it were 54 proof.
Nope, the difference is in volume. Using QtM's rough calculation, 1.5 shots of Listerine = 1 beer.
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  #6  
Old 05-06-2006, 11:07 AM
Paul in Qatar Paul in Qatar is offline
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How odd, Listerine is permitted here. I thought the modern version was non-alcoholic (or something).
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  #7  
Old 05-06-2006, 11:23 AM
Excalibre Excalibre is offline
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Originally Posted by Paul in Saudi
How odd, Listerine is permitted here. I thought the modern version was non-alcoholic (or something).
The stuff they sell over here has plenty of alcohol. I wonder if perhaps they have a different formula they sell in Muslim countries. Or maybe Muslim dietary law doesn't apply as it's not food - what about other medicines in alcohol? A lot of liquid suspensions have some alcohol - is that permitted over there?
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  #8  
Old 05-06-2006, 12:00 PM
John Mace John Mace is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Qadgop the Mercotan
Listerine is 54 proof, or 27 percent alcohol.
Wow. I did not know that. Can kids buy it?
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  #9  
Old 05-06-2006, 12:27 PM
pkbites pkbites is offline
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Originally Posted by John Mace
Wow. I did not know that. Can kids buy it?

The Master speaks.

Drinking Denatured Alcohol is actually a tough feat. It can rip your intestines to shit.
A kid getting drunk on mouthwash is going to have tell tale signs. Getting so sick he feels like he's going to die (and afraid he won't) is one.

Ounce per ounce drinking expensive Listerine doesn't make too much economic sense when you can get 1.5 litres of Carlo Rossi 22 proof wine on sale for $3.99.

I'm in law enforcement, and when I see street drunks drinking mouthwash (not as often as you would think) it's usually from the dollar store.
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  #10  
Old 05-06-2006, 12:32 PM
Paul in Qatar Paul in Qatar is offline
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Alcohol is OK when used for medical purposes, even if it is consumed. Several boring religious doctrines and rulings apply on the matter.
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  #11  
Old 05-06-2006, 12:34 PM
Annie-Xmas Annie-Xmas is offline
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My dental hygentist routinely gives patients Listerine, in a paper shot-size cup. I told her several times I couldn't have it. Finally, she ordered a big "NO ALCOHOL" stamp that they put on my folder (and presumably other alcoholic patients).

She also gave me a goody bag with a small bottle of Scope once. I gave the bottle back.
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  #12  
Old 05-06-2006, 01:36 PM
gabriela gabriela is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chaoticbear
Nope, the difference is in volume. Using QtM's rough calculation, 1.5 shots of Listerine = 1 beer.
Chaoticbear, hate to disagree, but that's in error.

The amount of alcohol which will raise the average person's blood alcohol concentration (henceforward: BAC) to 0.02 mg% is approximately one shot of hard liquor, one four-ounce glass of wine, or twelve (not sixteen) ounces of beer. This is forensic gospel. Sing it, brother and/or sister.

This gospel is approximate because as I er many people out there well know, the amount of alcohol in hard likker, wine, and BEER of Belgian gloriosity, er, various types can vary a lot. But the average levels are accepted to be: beer around 5% to 7%, wine 12, hard likker 50 to 80%. (Double percentages for proof values.)

It is also approximate because smaller people get as drunk on slightly less beer/wine/hard stuff, and bigger people get as drunk on slightly more. Also, some people are rapid metabolizers who get less drunk on the same amount, and some people aren't. A cool article in the recent issue of the forensic journal we call "the orange one" (gimme a minute, I'll think of its name) compared the unfortunate Asians who get redfaced and dysphoric from alcohol with those who enjoy it without said sequelae. Oddly enough, whether you were a fast metabolizer or not was unrelated to whether you turned red in the face or not. Some of the redfaces were fast metabolizers and some of the enjoy-it's were fast metabolizers. And some not.

Now Listerine would fall between wine and hard likker in its percent alcohol, so one shot of Listerine would equal about one and a half beers, and one and a half shots of Listerine would bring you up to about two and a quarter beers.

Here's an exercise I give the medical students in the liver lecture (following which, one year, they all got together and presented me with a gift certificate to a local beer brewery). Say you're an average size person and an average speed metabolizer, which is to say, you can get rid of one twelve-ounce beer / one four-ounce glass of wine / one and a half shots of Listerine / one shot of hard likker, every hour. That is to say, you go up .02 for each drink and you go down .02 each hour. How many beers can you have in an hour and still be legal to drive?
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  #13  
Old 05-06-2006, 02:54 PM
Alan Smithee Alan Smithee is offline
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The answer I suspect you're looking for is five: four drinks will get you to .08 (the legal limit in most states), but you'll have gone down .02 over the hour, putting you at .06, so you might as well have one more for the road. Actually, since .08 makes you illegal, you should drink slightly less than five beers.

Of course, in real life, it doesn't work that way for several reasons. For one, you don't start to metabolize the entire beer the moment you take the first sip. As an example, if you nursed the first beer for 30 minutes and then drank four in half an hour, you'll only have metabolized about 3/4 of the alcohol from the first beer at the end of the hour, pushing you over .08. Even if you only took a few seconds to drink the first beer, you'll still be slightly over .08 if your body works exactly as stated in the question. I'd be very surprised if anyone's body actually processes alcohol in a perfectly linear rate. Most drugs have a metabolic half-life.

Additionally, most states allow conviction for DUI/DWI based on obsevable evidence of intoxication, even if blood alcohol levels are below the legal limit.
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  #14  
Old 05-06-2006, 03:33 PM
spingears spingears is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pkbites
Drinking Denatured Alcohol is actually a tough feat.
Mouth Wash Is in a sense "Denatured Alchhol" But The alcohol content is ethyl not methyl and the other ingrediant(s) may be distaseful but not toxic.

OTOH Denatured Alcohol is Ethyl alcohol to which some Methyl alcohol or other denaturant has been added to make unfit for human (drinking) consumption.
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  #15  
Old 05-06-2006, 07:16 PM
Excalibre Excalibre is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gabriela
Chaoticbear, hate to disagree, but that's in error.

The amount of alcohol which will raise the average person's blood alcohol concentration (henceforward: BAC) to 0.02 mg% is approximately one shot of hard liquor, one four-ounce glass of wine, or twelve (not sixteen) ounces of beer. This is forensic gospel. Sing it, brother and/or sister.

This gospel is approximate because as I er many people out there well know, the amount of alcohol in hard likker, wine, and BEER of Belgian gloriosity, er, various types can vary a lot. But the average levels are accepted to be: beer around 5% to 7%, wine 12, hard likker 50 to 80%. (Double percentages for proof values.)
Let's do math!

Okay, a twelve ounce beer with 5% alcohol by volume works out to 18 ml of alcohol. I'm not sure what "one drink" is in milliliters of pure EtOH, but 18 ml should be close enough. Now, Listerine is 27% abv, per above posts. So 66 ml of Listerine has 18 ml of alcohol. 65 ml is 2.20 ounces, according to Google Calculator. One shot is 1.5 ounces, so one "drink" of Listerine is 1.47 shots (and yes, Google Calculator will give answers in shots! How useful is that?) Going the other way, one shot of Listerine is equivalent to 8.1 ounces of beer. chaoticbear was right.

Also, one drink of 5% abv beer is just about exactly equivalent to one 1.5 ounce shot of 40% abv (80 proof) liquor; that makes sense, as most vodka and whiskey on the shelves are somewhere around 80 proof.
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  #16  
Old 05-07-2006, 12:52 AM
chaoticbear chaoticbear is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gabriela
you can get rid of one twelve-ounce beer / one four-ounce glass of wine / one and a half shots of Listerine / one shot of hard likker,
Also, this validates my computation.
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  #17  
Old 05-07-2006, 11:46 AM
asterion asterion is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spingears
Mouth Wash Is in a sense "Denatured Alchhol" But The alcohol content is ethyl not methyl and the other ingrediant(s) may be distaseful but not toxic.

OTOH Denatured Alcohol is Ethyl alcohol to which some Methyl alcohol or other denaturant has been added to make unfit for human (drinking) consumption.
Or it's absolute ethanol (not Absolut and the joke gets old fast for the guys working in the stockroom) and the azeotrope has been broken using benzene.
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