DAILY DOSE ~ So Sorry For The Bird!

The Daily Dose: No.30

~ Off Yer Face Facts ~

Welcome to today’s alcohol-free offering of information, inspiration and fun to keep you motivated and moving in the right direction 🙂

So Sorry For The Bird!


The average Russian gulps down about 18 litres (4.8 gallons) of alcohol a year. This is twice what experts think is highly dangerous.

   ~ from the Drunken Dodo Alcohol Facts FAQ, Part 1

In Britain we have a HUGE alcohol problem (and I don’t mean we can’t get enough, although…). In comparison to Russia, however, we’re cat pee-sipping pansies.

Of course, like all studies, results vary, but they all agree on one thing: eastern European countries dominate the charts as far as booze abuse is concerned.

Usual suspects include Belarus, Moldova, Lithuania, Ukraine, Romania, Hungary, Czech Republic, Slovakia and Russia of course.

The first intrusion from elsewhere is still in Europe, however: Andorra, the mountain-locked drinkers’ paradise swilling around in a an alcohol-sodden valley between France and Spain.

Talking of France and Spain, they clock in at a (dis)honourable Top 30 position, on either side of… yes, that’s right, boozed up Britain.

We’re talking about the Top 30 alcohol-consuming nations in a study of 190 countries for a 2010 World Health Organisation report, so the Top 30 pissed up places in the world, basically. Cheers!

Looking more closely at Russia, as an example, the situation is disastrous. More than 30% of all Russian deaths in 2012 were caused by alcohol.

A Lancet study, quoted by the BBC, said that 25% of Russian men die before they are 55, with most deaths down to drinking, as opposed to 7% in the UK.

Male life expectancy in Russia in 2012 was around 65, against 76 in the US and 74 in China.

Causes of death unearth more usual suspects: liver disease, alcohol poisoning, alcohol-fueled accidents and fights.

Causes of all this desperate drinking… well, that would take up a whole other Daily Dose, now wouldn’t it?

And remember, if you’re worried about your drinking here’s some good news: the fact that you have just read this article is a HUGE indication that you are BOTH well aware of the problem, AND ready to do something about it. Congratulations, the first step is behind you ?

* The title of this post comes from this story about Russian drinking toasts found on the “Russia Behind The Headlines” website:

Yet another longwinded toast from “The Caucasian Prisoner” concludes as follows: “And so when the flock of birds headed south for the winter, one small but proud bird said, I will fly straight to the sun! She flew higher and higher, but very soon she burned her wings and fell to the very bottom of a deep gorge. So let us drink to this: let not a single one of us ever break away from the collective, no matter how high he flies!”

Shurik, who is totally wasted by that point, starts to cry. “What is it, my friend?” his host asks. “I’m so sorry for the bird!” Shurik replies, his eyes full of tears. “I’m so sorry for the bird!” has been a popular catchphrase in Russia for half a century; it is often used to break tension or make things sound a bit less formal and serious.


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