Friday, September 18, 2009

The 4-by-3

Writing about breaking the law is a tricky endeavor due to the crimes in question and the parties involved. But the following ritual is just so awesome/extreme/crazy that it had to included in a blog like this. For obvious reasons, names and locations have been changed or omitted. I hope you'll forgive my vagueness.

Every spring, a certain group of fraternal brothers at a certain Washington-area university take part in an event that, for those who experience it, often constitutes one of the final steps on the journey to manhood. Now, almost every fraternity in America at one time or another has been known to participate in competitive drinking games (much to the disdain of administrators, parents, columnists, and generally sophisticated people everywhere). The old stalwart of these events is the case race, in which a small group attempts to finish 30 beers before any of the other teams.

Sometimes, dudes also like to prove their manliness by engaging in eating contests involving various items- wings, hot dogs, pizza, cole slaw, etc. You name it and it's probably been eaten competitively before. Also, how many college students don't like to toke up a little bit from time to time? Despite the Federal government's best efforts, marijuana usage is rampant on America's college campuses. Who are we to disagree with popular opinion?

Being overachievers in the areas of intoxication and excess, we decided to combine these three elements- drinking, eating, and smoking- into a single event and turn it into a competition. The 4-by-3 Relay Competition is not for the feint of heart: four man teams, one case of the beer of your choice, one large pizza, one eighth of an ounce of sticky green. The first team to finish all three wins. It doesn't matter how you split up consumption of the various items, they just all have to go away. No shotgunning, no funneling, if you boot you're disqualified and your team is forced to operate a man down.

By the end everything dissolves into utter chaos and to quote Douglas C. Neidermeyer of "Animal House" fame, it usually results in "individual acts of perversion so profound and disgusting that decorum prohibits listing them here." By the way, one last kicker: the team that claims victory must empty all the backwash from their empties into a Solo cup. If the residual beer fills more than half the cup, they have 60 seconds to drink it or risk forfeiting their victory. Last year's winning team finished in just over 38 minutes. I challenge anyone who reads this to either beat that time or come up with a better competition.

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