On this day in 1962, the Cuban Missile Crisis kicked off when an Air Force U-2 reconnaissance plane photographed those sneaky Soviets installing nuclear missiles on the island of Cuba.
The resulting blockade and showdown were probably the closest the world ever came to full-scale nuclear war.
So, you’re probably wondering, did drinking go up during that incredibly stressful time? Of course it did.
According to a report released by the JFK Presidential Museum in 2002, there was a large jump in alcohol consumption, especially during the peak of the crisis from October 22nd to the 28th.
Americans drank roughly a third more than usual, which should surprise no one.
When things go to hell, mankind has always turned to the comforting arms of Sweet Mother Booze. It’s gotten us through a lot. It’s that calm companion that leans against that flimsy door separating sanity and madness.
True story: My father was whisked away from my mother in the middle of the night. He left her alone in a doublewide trailer in snowy Colorado with my older sister because of his orders. She had no idea where he went.
He did not have a choice.
He told me stories of U.S. Army gasoline being traded for red wine and moonshine while he worked a relay communication truck on the beaches of France.
Gas was 5 francs a liter then, in 1962
He said there are probably still red wine jugs buried in the cool sand on the beaches of France.
Raise a drink.
The Modern Drunkard