On "National Drink Beer Day," 10 of the World's Greatest Writers Praise Their Favorite Booze

Sep 28 2016

On “National Drink Beer Day,” 10 of the World’s Greatest Writers Praise Their Favorite Booze

September 28th, 2016

Are you drunk yet? Why not? It’s National Drink Beer Day. So we’ve assembled 10 great quotes from some of the world’s greatest literary minds in honor of the world’s most widely consumed alcoholic drink.

1. Milan Kundera (b. 1929), the Czech magical realist author, sung beer’s praises in typically lyrical fashion.

 “Isn’t beer the holy libation of sincerity? The potion that dispels all hypocrisy, any charade of fine manners? The drink that does nothing worse than incite its fans to urinate in all innocence, to gain weight in all frankness?” 

2. Sci-fi writer Ray Bradbury (1920-2012) had positive views of beer, though not so much of humanity.

“Beer’s intellectual. What a shame so many idiots drink it.” 

3. Stephen King (b. 1947) had some sound advice.

“A man who lies about beer makes enemies.” 

4. And Martin Luther (1483-1546) naturally offered a theological perspective:

“Whoever drinks beer, he is quick to sleep; whoever sleeps long, does not sin; whoever does not sin, enters Heaven! Thus, let us drink beer!”

5.  A character in Gravity’s Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon (b. 1937) captures the drink’s appeal perfectly:

“Oh, this beer here is cold, cold and hop-bitter, no point coming up for air, gulp, till it’s all–hahhhh.”

6. Beer offered Edgar Allen Poe (1809-1849) a distraction from whichever sickly love interest was dying of consumption by the sea that day.

Fill with mingled cream and amber,
I will drain that glass again.
Such hilarious visions clamber
Through the chambers of my brain.
Quaintest thoughts — queerest fancies,
Come to life and fade away:
What care I how time advances?
I am drinking ale today.

 7. Carson McCullers (1917-1967), author of The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter, offers slightly milder praise (why choose?):

“Next to music beer was best.”

8. Some useful insight from Hunter S. Thompson (1937-2005):

“There is an ancient Celtic axiom that says ‘Good people drink good beer.’ Which is true, then as now. Just look around you in any public barroom and you will quickly see: Bad people drink bad beer. Think about it.”

9. From the journals of Sylvia Plath (1932-1963):

“The beer tastes good to my throat, cold and bitter, and the three boys and the beer and the queer freeness of the situation makes me feel like laughing forever. So I laugh, and my lipstick leaves a red stain like a bloody crescent moon on top of the beer can. I am looking very healthy and flushed and bright-eyed, having both a good tan and a rather excellent fever.”

10. And William Shakespeare himself (1564-1616) noted approvingly:

“….a quart of Ale is a dish for a king.”