The New Yorker's Joan Acocella spends more than 5,000 words dissecting the hangover. As she eloquently points out, "it is a preventable malady: don't drink." But beyond abstinence, other popular cures include peanut butter in Africa, chilies in Mexico, pickle juice in Russia and greasy, fried whatever everywhere else in the world. Read what triggers the bed spins and tummy aches in the Annals of Drinking.
Or just scan our favorite shots of wisdom from the piece, after the jump.
On International Nicknames:
The Swedes get "smacked from behind."” ... Salvadorans wake up "made of rubber," the French with a "wooden mouth" or a "hair ache." The Germans and the Dutch say they have a "tomcat,” presumably wailing. The Poles, reportedly, experience a "howling of kittens." My favorites are the Danes, who get "carpenters in the forehead."
On Red Bull:
Some people say that the Red Bull holds the hangover at bay, but apparently its primary effect is to blunt the depressive force of alcohol—no surprise, since an eight-ounce serving of Red Bull contains more caffeine than two cans of Coke... According to Maria Lucia Souza-Formigoni, a psychobiology researcher at the Federal University of São Paolo.. after a few drinks with Red Bull, you’re drunk but you don’t know it, and therefore you may engage in high-risk behaviors—driving, going home with a questionable companion—rather than passing out quietly in your chair.
On Tripe Soup:
Many folk cures for hangovers are soups: menudo in Mexico, mondongo in Puerto Rico, işkembe çorbasi in Turkey, patsa in Greece, khashi in Georgia. The fact that all of the above involve tripe may mean something. Hungarians favor a concoction of cabbage and smoked meats, sometimes forthrightly called "hangover soup."
On the Inevitability (Duh):
Here the hangover is a comedy, or at least a fact of life. So it has been, probably, since the Stone Age, and so it is likely to be for a while yet.