Think back to social soirees of the 1940s. The 1920s even. People would drink with panache and in moderation. Sometimes they’d get a little rowdy, kicking up their heels, doing a little Charleston.
Even in the ’70s there was a certain art to sharing a drink (think James Bond or any other suave icon requesting that his guest share a bevvy “shaken or stirred”).
But then something horrible happened.
Punks started getting way too pissed. Drugs started entering the picture (from cocaine in the early ’80s to ecstasy by the end of the decade) and come the 1990s, drinking became less a ‘social lubricant’ and more a ‘social abhorrent’.
Fast forward to the here and now, and we’ve got excessively pissed idiots throwing cowardly king-hits, party queens mixing Molotov cocktails with meth, girls going wild and ending up in the gutter, and puke all over the steps of what might otherwise have been a decent-looking pub.
Yes, drinking has gotten out of hand, and so DrinkWise Australia has stepped in to help clean up some of the mess.
Recently going live with an effective campaign that presents contrasting illustrations of characters ‘drinking properly’ and others making absolute fools of themselves, accompanied by the voiceover of a slick drinking expert, the adverts work very well in clarifying the divide between sensible drinking and social fuck-ups.
The overall response to the campaign has been overwhelmingly positive, with 82% of messages from the target audience of 18-24 year-olds being very much for the simple message that ‘proper’ drinking is the wiser way to go.
Let’s just hope the message is put into practice.