History of the Beer Shotgun

A Party Staple

Shotgunning beers — the sure-fire way to catch a buzz quickly and fit in at any frat party you may find yourself stumbling into.

When was the first beer shotgunned?

John Cusack graciously brought the beer shotgun to the big screen in 1985 with the film “The Sure Thing”.

It quickly became a favorite of college kids and bored partygoers, and there is currently a Guinness World Record for the fastest beer shotgun.

The current record? 2.78 seconds.

It was set in 2009 on New Years Day in Grand Forks, ND.

Think you’re faster? (sure you are) Let us know!

Brief Intro to Shotgunning

What does shotgunning a beer entail, exactly?

At first glance, it seems like a simple task…

  1. You punch a hole in the side of the beer can, near the bottom of the can.
  2. Put your mouth over the punched hole.
  3. Pop the tab, and crank it.

Gravity will quickly deliver the entire contents of the can to your mouth at hyperspeed.

Some Quick Shotgunning Tips

  • Let the beer sit at room temperature for a bit. It’ll go down easier.
  • Opt for a light beer such as a Natural Light instead of a heavier beer like a lager or IPA
  • Focus on your breathing and bring it to a slow & steady rate

An interesting tip to shotgunning a beer: chug a lukewarm beer, one that has been sitting at room temperature for around an hour. It will get way too heady and probably result in you spitting out a mouthful or two of foam if you take it directly from the fridge and shotgun the beer.

Normally, when shotgunning beers, it is a competition to see who can consume their beer in the fastest time. There is also typically a barrage of trash talk that occurs throughout the competition.

Why it matters

The best tip on shotgunning a beer is the type of beer that you’re shotgunning matters greatly.

Don’t try to shotgun a lager or an IPA. The best type of beer to shotgun is a light brew, usually a domestic brand such as a Natty Light.

Remember that the beer you choose is going to end up very quickly in your stomach, and anything other than a light beer is going to hurt.

Even when you choose a light beer to shotgun, it’s still going to be pretty uncomfortable for the first few minutes after you get the beer down.

You may have to fight back the urge to let the beer come back up. Don’t worry, this goes away with practice.

If you can make it through those first few uncomfortable minutes, though, you basically just need to get a really large burp out, and you’ll be feeling fine again.

Environment is Key

Where you choose to shotgun beers is pretty important also.

Don’t forget that there are going to be times, more than we like to admit, that we are unable to keep that beer down.

Or half of it flows out of our mouth because our throat and mouth are completely full, so most of the beer is on the floor.

You don’t want to try to shotgun beers on someone’s brand new Berber carpet. That is an automatic recipe for disaster.

The best choices are outside, or if you must be inside while shotgunning, try to be in the kitchen or bathroom.

This is so if any clean up is necessary, you’re in the immediate vicinity of a sink and towels. Also, the linoleum or tile floor is going to be a pretty simple clean up with a quick swipe of a mop.

You definitely don’t want to try to shotgun beers in a vehicle, or on your Moms’ new sofa, or basically near anything that anyone doesn’t want to be ruined.

Keep it close to clean up material if you must be indoors, or hang out on the porch and shotgun beers until your heart’s content with no worries about ruining anything near you.

Keep it Cheap!

Shotgunning an expensive beer is just plain wasteful. I mean, who doesn’t love getting drunk for pennies?! Seriously, buy some cheap beer if you plan on shotgunning it.

It is essentially a waste of money to shotgun an expensive beer.

Usually, the shotgun is done with a fairly cheap, light, domestic brew.

You will be swallowing it too quickly to taste it, and consuming the beer that quickly is going to get you buzzed, even if you normally drink IPA’s with much higher alcohol content.

Watch Yourself

Be careful shotgunning beers, though.

Give it a few minutes in between shotguns, because it is going to be a couple of minutes, typically right after the burp, before you feel the full effects of the beer that you shotgunned.

If you don’t give yourself a few minutes between them, you could end up over-imbibing and getting sick or passing out in the middle of the party.

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