Only in Philly is cheap beer considered a problem

Philadelphia as a city peaked 241 years ago, when a bunch of out-of-towners showed up and signed their names on a piece of paper that sits in another city. Now the cheese steak-eating dumpster swimmers who live there have another thing to complain about: soda prices.

The city’s tax on soda is so high that beer actually costs less than soda, according to a study by the Tax Foundation, which you can guess by the name thinks that taxes in general are bad. The foundation bemoans that people are going to drive outside of the city limits so that they can escape this tyrannical tax on sugar water.

This study has an obvious flaw: it assumes that inexpensive beer is a problem. We’re smack dab in the middle of a craft beer revolution, not to mention a decades-long decline in soda consumption. Complaining about a soda tax is like complaining about rock music — no one cares about it anymore, we moved on. As long as the beer prices are down, it will truly always be sunny in Philadelphia.

Editor’s note: The only reason to drink soda is when it’s a mixer.

Royally drunk: Queen Elizabeth is a binge drinker

The picture was taken at six in the morning.

Queen Elizabeth II hasn’t had a job since her father died. She lives a life every little girl dreams of: living in a big, fancy palace with as many puppies as she wants. She’s 91 and still going strong. Is the secret to her longevity her access to first-rate health care and a lavish lifestyle funded by British taxpayers? No, it’s booze.

According to reports, the queen drinks four drinks a day. She drinks a gin and Dubonnet (a sweet aperitif) before lunch, a gin martini during lunch, then a glass of wine at the end of lunch. So she’s feeling quite jovial and it’s barely the afternoon. She then sobers up with tea in the afternoon and has a glass of champagne before going to bed at night.

That adds up to six units of alcohol by British standards, which the UK government considers binge drinking.

College is no longer the place to party, survey finds

The war on sobriety is being lost in what was once thought to be a stronghold of drunkenness: college. And we’re baffled as to why.

According to a recent study of adults aged 18 to 24, binge drinking is down. (For those of you playing at home, the study defined binge drinking as five or more drinks on one occasion.) The findings are particularly concerning, as the numbers had been on the rise in recent years. In college, you’re stuck in one place, surrounded by people your age, and paying bills with money you haven’t earned. Why wouldn’t you binge drink?

But there is a bright point. It seems that adults 18 to 24 who have not attended college are picking up the slack in alcohol consumption. Perhaps it is no longer cool to stay in school.

Eclipse watchers loading up on booze, weed

There’s a solar eclipse headed our way next month. It’s going to cut across the U.S. from Oregon to South Carolina. And like a full moon, it’s driving people crazy.

People are buying up hotel rooms and any other lodging accommodations they can to be in the path of the Aug. 21 solar eclipse. But they don’t want to just see it happen, the want to get loaded for it, too. In Oregon, locals are bracing for a rush of people coming to their area, and stores selling alcohol and marijuana are stocking up to meet their every need. The state liquor board predicts an 20 to 40% increase in sales, and some marijuana shops expect their sales to at least double.

So when the eclipse comes, it won’t just be the sun that’s blacked out.

Man’s collection of 9,000 beer cans going up for sale

A lot of people like beer, but it takes a certain type of beer fan to collect beer cans. We’re not talking about the empties in your recycling bin, we mean organized, preserved beer cans put on display. If this sounds like you, you’re in luck.

In England, one man is getting rid of his collection of 9,000-plus beer can collection. And if you guessed that it’s because his wife is tired of it, pat yourself on the back. In 1975, the woman who would later become Nick West’s wife gave him a book on beer, kicking off his collection. Since then, he has tracked down and bought thousands of different beer cans for what he calls his library. Now, they happy couple plan to downsize to a smaller house, and West’s wife doesn’t want the cans crowding up the new place.

So if you’re a beer can collector, and single, it might be time to reach out and make a purchase.

Man gets arrested, out of jury duty for showing up drunk

Jury duty is a hassle for most people, which is why jokes about how to get out of serving on jury are so popular. But if you try one of these schemes, make sure it doesn’t put you in jail.

In Texas, authorities say a 23-year-old man showed up for jury duty visibly drunk with a beer in hand. The man was seen on the courthouse steps in a stupor, drinking from a large cup. Deputies soon found the man was there for jury duty, and the cup in question had beer in it.

He was arrested and charged with public intoxication. And he probably got out of jury duty, too.

Animals won’t stop attacking our liquor stores

If you live in Alaska, you have fought a bear. It’s a requirement for a driver’s license up there. But aside from that, Alaskans have every right to believe they can live a normal life and not have to deal with bears.

For a few terror-filled moments at a liquor store, those hopes were dashed. The clerk at the Liquor Barrel, a liquor store near Juneau, was shocked when he saw a large, brown animal walk in and it wasn’t a dog. The juvenile bear looked at the candy rack near the front door and stood up on his hind legs.

Luckily, a quick-thinking customer started clapping his hands and yelling at it, knowing that bears hate public praise. The bear soon left, and remains at large. The best news is that no bottles were harmed in the incident, unlike the peacock attack a month ago.

Fighting whisky: Bottle found sealed in decommissioned warship

There’s nothing better in the world than found booze. You either find booze you forgot you had, or find booze that someone else lost track of. And it’s been mellowing the whole time.

A bottle of whisky was found on board an Australian warship, hidden away for 35 years–the bad news is that it’s Canadian whisky. The HMAS Sidney, a frigate in the Royal Australian Navy since 1982, is being decommissioned and torn apart. When it was being built in Seattle, crews placed a small bottle of MacNaughton Canadian Whisky inside a post on the ship. Since then it’s sailed around the world a couple times and no doubt fought off invasions from New Zealand.

When American workers who built the ship learned it was being torn apart, they notified authorities of the bottle’s location. So if Canadian whisky is your thing, go grab a sip of history.

Bar robbed at gunpoint, patrons don’t care

What’s great about a bar is that you can go out and have a good time drinking with your friends. What’s bad about a bar is that other people exist. Studies have shown that not talking to strangers in a bar decreases your odds of getting in a fight. Unfortunately, it also means you miss when something cool happens.

In Florida, two robbers, one armed with a shotgun, the other carrying a rifle, took money from a bar and walked out, all while patrons in the bar kept drinking. The robbery happened at about 1:30 a.m. last Sunday, which may help explain why so many people didn’t see it happen or just didn’t care. The bar owner said people kept ordering drinks during the robbery.

We’ve had nights like those.

Zima is back in case you want to punish yourself

Learn from our mistakes, kids.

Despite the fact that it is an awful thing, food nostalgia refuses to go away. Last year we saw Ecto Cooler and Crystal Pepsi returned to stores. This year, 1990s-era malt beverage Zima will be sold again for some reason.

Yes, Zima, the grandfather of Smirnoff Ice, has been brought back by MillerCoors. Luckily, it’s only for a limited time. Zima first came on the market in 1993. It was marketed as a citrusy clear malt beverage answering to the wine cooler craze of its era. According to MillerCoors, production of Zima stopped in 2008, although no one had seen it in the wild for nearly a decade by then.

This sugary, throwback alcoholic drink is sure to be a summer hit with high schoolers who have fake IDs.