Social Question

Imadethisupwithnoforethought's avatar

So what was your strategy for getting booze when you were underage?

Asked by Imadethisupwithnoforethought (14664points) June 2nd, 2012

I am watching a movie about underage children attempting to get booze, and I am suddenly struck by the wonderful ability of human beings to overcome adversity.

So, what strategies did you utilize to get booze when you were underage?

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48 Answers

Bellatrix's avatar

I used to just get dressed up, wear make-up, and walk in and buy it. I was quite well developed so that helped a lot I think. I can’t remember ever being turned away. Now, things are very different and my adult daughters still get asked for ID. I would rather have things as they are now.

wundayatta's avatar

Take what wine my parents are willing to give me while waiting to be legal. For me, legal was 18. It was not much of a big deal to wait.

Bellatrix's avatar

Oh @wundayatta has reminded me. My parents didn’t share, but as teens my sister and I also used to get the ladder and steal our parent’s alcohol stash out of the loft. They only really had it out at Christmas time. They weren’t big drinkers. So we would climb up there, enjoy a tipple or two, then top it up with water.

filmfann's avatar

I knew a liquor store in Oakland that would sell to anyone.
When I was 18, I worked at a liquor store, and I always could tell when someone was underage.

Nullo's avatar

None needed. The folks would let me have a bit wine if I asked for it; I rarely did (a bit at New Year’s, communion in some churches we’d visit) because I didn’t like it. I prefer sweeter wines, but apparently just about everyone else likes their wine dry.

filmfann's avatar

@Imadethisupwithnoforethought I wasn’t allowed to use the register, because I was under 21. I stocked the shelves, bagged the bottles, and watched to make sure we weren’t robbed.

Blackberry's avatar

We had friends with older brothers (conversely, it seemed older sisters wouldn’t help, maybe they were smarter, lol), and at one point we shop lifted beer. I’m not proud of it, but we were dumb teens. We would walk into the Safeway with backpacks, act like we were shopping with baskets, have the beer in the basket, but stroll over to the bathroom and put it in our bag and walk out, since the bathrooms were right by the door. We left the baskets in some random aisle sometimes.

We were caught once, and they just let us go with the stipulation we never come back.

Coloma's avatar

I was the ring leader, I’d boldly approach appropriate age people while my friends hid in the bushes. haha Cute little blonde with a spicy personality, worked every time. ;-)

WillWorkForChocolate's avatar

I either asked my parents for sips of their drinks, which were always given, or, when I was older, a male friend drove me over to the nearest “liquor city” and bought me what I wanted.

Berserker's avatar

I had no real strategy, I just waited to see if I would get lucky or not, by hanging around with people who had some. Sometimes I’d offer to pitch in for the costs, that usually worked, even if I just had like five bucks lol.

iphigeneia's avatar

I was a year younger than about half of my friends, so I could have gotten alcohol easily if I wanted it. In the days when we were all underage, I guess they had older friends and siblings who would get it for them. I didn’t drink until I was 17 though, and even then very rarely.

On one occasion I ‘borrowed’ a tiny bit from my parents’ liquor cabinet. It wasn’t locked or secret or anything, and I don’t think that stuff has been touched in years. I probably could have taken the whole bottle and no one would have noticed.

Seaofclouds's avatar

I had older friends that would get it and, when they weren’t around, a local liquor store that would sell it to me when I was 16.

Coloma's avatar

In the 70’s the worst of fake ID’s worked. lol

Berserker's avatar

@Coloma ID existed back then? XD

Coloma's avatar

@Symbeline Shockingly yes they did! lol

Ponderer983's avatar

I had a fake ID.

GladysMensch's avatar

We stole it from delivery trucks. We would wait for a truck to roll up to the back of a liquor store. The driver would get out, open the side of the truck, and bring in the shipment on a dolly. If the driver left the truck open then we would run up and steal a few cases while the driver was inside.

Sunny2's avatar

My parents would let me have a sip of anything they drank, but the curiosity was still there. One night when they were out, I decided to try something from their liquor cabinet. I poured a small amount of something in a small glass. I nearly spit it out. It was vermouth. That was the end of my experimenting. Didn’t drink again until I was in college.

ratboy's avatar

Prayer and fasting.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

I was Russian.~

Aethelflaed's avatar

Step 1: Find a friend who’s 21+

Friend is busy/unwilling/d-bag?

Step 2: Moar pot!!

cookieman's avatar

My friend had an older brother who threw a lot of parties and was willing to share.

mazingerz88's avatar

Bribe the store owner with porn magazines.

Philosophile's avatar

Still being underage, I don’t. I’ve got goody two shoes syndrome. Couldn’t even walk out of class two minutes early without a teacher.

That being said, my parents found in fun to give me a couple Long Island ice teas on family gatherings, though I’ve got our Bavarian tolerance for alcohol, unfortunately for them XD

I did get preeeetty drunk when I went to Germany at 16, though.

augustlan's avatar

We had lots of older guy friends. Being female, I never paid for it, either.

downtide's avatar

I would just ask my parents for it. My dad used to buy me Woodpecker Cider and I discovered years later that he hadn’t actually realised it was alcoholic. But they did also let me have wine too.

digitalimpression's avatar

I let other fools take the risk and just attended their parties.

Keep_on_running's avatar

I never had the desire to do so. I’m not really into alcohol like most people.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

We’d go to a mini mart and wait for biker guys who would usually buy it for us if asked. Aside from that, lots of teens held keg parties as their houses so each weekend we could get word where parties were and make the circuit. The best drinking though came when I went to work in restaurants and they’d let you drink whatever you wanted and plenty of over 21 coworkers would buy for you.

buster's avatar

I found asking a homeless person to buy me beer worked when I promised to give him a beer or two or a few bucks worked well.

bolwerk's avatar

I successfully made homebrewed beer before I could legally drink, and loved it. I still enjoy homebrewing. Ironically, by the time I got around to where I could get BudMillerCoors, the stuff people drink when they want a punishing headache, easily, I already knew what real beer was supposed to taste like.

But it was never that hard finding alcohol the way other people suggested (other people, stealing, whatever). What was a bit disappointing when I was younger was not being able to get into clubs and bars to socialize – there isn’t much in the way of a nightlife if you can’t do that, especially in a small town.

If you’re American, it’s a good call to spend some of a summer in Europe if you can to learn to drink safely.

Buttonstc's avatar

I never needed to. Living with two alcoholic parents who scarcely knew the time of day when they were sloshed, it certainly was no challenge to sneak some if so inclined. There was never a shortage of booze of all kinds at our house.

I took a huge glug out of a bottle my Mother had hidden when I was around 10 or 11 years old and promptly gagged and spat it out before pouring the rest down the sink. I was curious about what the big attraction was. It tasted so horrendous I found it hard to believe that people drank this stuff willingly.

Of course I got thoroughly yelled at for wasting perfectly good booze. Go figure.

Needless to say, alcohol lost its allure for me simply from overexposure to it and its inevitable results.

And by the time I got to college, I had already turned 18 since my birthday was in the summer, so all the drinking parties celebrating someone turning the magical age were pretty pointless for me. (This was back in the days before legal drinking age became 21)

Paradox25's avatar

My parents fridge and liquor cabinet. And sometimes my older brother.

deni's avatar

I had no interest in drinking before I turned 21. Well, when I was 19–20, I’d drink with my older friends if they bought alcohol, but I never bought it illegally or went into a bar underage. It wasn’t worth the risk to me, plus I didn’t like drinking that much. Now, psh, I wish I had no interest. So much money gone to vodka.

Nullo's avatar

@Buttonstc Curious, isn’t it? The young recognize alcohol for the poison that it actually is.

bolwerk's avatar

@Nullo: alcohol is no more a poison than sugar. It’s healthy when consumed responsibly, and devastating when abused.

Nullo's avatar

@bolwerk Yes, but alcohol’s nasty flavor makes it code for poison. The childish response is the natural one.

bolwerk's avatar

@Nullo: so anti-freeze is not a poison?

Nullo's avatar

@bolwerk You aren’t actually reading my posts, I don’t think.
Your body recognizes certain things as being poisonous, and responds in a number of ways. Flavor is popular, as is its cousin, Odor. You don’t have an exhaustive list, and it doesn’t cover good-tasting poisons. But by and large, food thing that doesn’t taste nasty is probably somewhere between harmless and healthy.

Your liver treats alcohol as a poison, too, we might add.

bolwerk's avatar

@Nullo nothing in your inane posts show that alcohol is a poison either. Just because your liver filters something out does not make a poison, nor does your opinion that it has a bad smell or taste.

Nullo's avatar

@bolwerk That’s because alcohol’s poisonous effects are self-evident. Go slam a few drinks and we’ll talk about where your coordination went.

Buttonstc's avatar

I think Julia’s point is valid for both alcohol and tobacco as well. How many people do you know who speak in glowing terms of how delicious was their very first taste of either. I have yet to meet any.

Obviously there are sweetened or flavored varieties but thats disguising what lies underneath. I was totally mystified in my school years about what the big attraction was for my friends to sneak a smoke in the bathrooms or out behind the building. (I now realize that there was no inherent attraction to the flavor of cigarettes. The total attraction

Buttonstc's avatar

…..disappearing keyboard again. Sorry for the interruption. This tablet and I are headed for a parting of the ways.

And obviously I meant Nullo (not Julia. Damn Autocorrect)

Anyhow, I realize that the total initial attraction of cigarrettes was the fact that they were forbidden so there was a lot of initial revulsion to overcome in order to continue smoking after the first few puffs.

Peer pressure is so strong at that age. But similar to booze, being over saturated at home with it 24/7 makes it really easy to resist the “temptation”.

I just looked at them like they were nuts and point blank told them so when they invited me along for their little excursions into the titillation of the forbidden.

Youth truly is wasted on the young. How many adults today rue the day they went against their natural instincts and went down the smoking road.

After the revelations from Jeffrey Weigand and further facts about how many addictive substances along with nicotine were added by the tobacco companies to keep people permanently addicted, its no small wonder people have such a hard time quitting.


I seriously hope you’re not going to try to make an argument that smoking is not poisonous, are you ? That would really be a stretch.

bolwerk's avatar

@Nullo: slamming a few drinks would be irresponsible use of alcohol. Having a glass or two of beer or wine every day or two is not. Really, why don’t you just have a dozen venti coffees from Starbucks? Eat a schweinshaxe or three every day?

@Buttonstc: I don’t see where I commented on smoking? Alcohol has pretty widely respected health benefits. There are some outlying examples of tobacco or marijuana having health benefits as treatments, but I’m not sure you can make the case that it could ever improve general health like you can with alcohol.

Buttonstc's avatar


The only reason I mentioned smoking in relationship to this discussion is because you kept overreacting to the intent of the primary point which Nullo (and subsequently myself) tried to make which was that if more people had NOT gone against their childhood instincts to avoid nasty tasting things (which USUALLY, but not 100%, signal danger) they would be far happier adults not saddled with addictions now difficult to eliminate. This applies to both alcohol and cigarettes alike. Same principle is operative.

Yes, there have been some minimsl health benefits shown from wine and perhaps even beer but the caution that is ALWAYS included by medical and health experts is that if one is a teetotaler (or close to it) then don’t change to daily wine consumption thinking it’s going to give you a huge boost to your health. It’s not worth the risk.

And I have yet to read or hear of ANY benefits to distilled spirits like scotch, whisky, etc. And research is increasingly discovering that the darker the spirit, the higher the concentration of byproducts called congeners which have a high correlation with the development of Alzheimers.

And one has to consciously cultivate a taste for these. Give any kid a sip of Scotch and they’ll spit it out. And why wouldn’t they? It tastes like liquid cigarette ashes, quite frankly.

Someone can live a long happy life listening to their childhood instinct to avoid this stuff (both hard liquor and cigarettes) instead of cultivating a liking for it due mainly to peer pressure. And there are PLENTY of adults who wish they never had. That’s all I’m saying. Plain and simple.

So, even tho there are a FEW health benefits of wine (which has a far lower alcohol concentration) it does not outweigh the risks, all told, of addiction and other damages associated with too much consumption of alcohol.

Of course it’s possible for people to drink responsibly. That is not in dispute. But far too much destruction has resulted from those who either won’t or can’t.

bolwerk's avatar

@Buttonstc: I didn’t overreact to anything. I merely refuted it, and his claim is a bit ridiculous. And near as I can tell, there is literally nothing definitively and rarely even generally true in anything you just said. I can’t find any research linking fusel oils present in alcoholic beverages to mental disease (cogeners include dozens of other compounds that might very well have such an effect). While surely some abstainers lead long, happy lives, they don’t seem to do as well as ’‘heavy’’ drinkers.

While I’m a bit skeptical of the health benefits for spirits outweighing the consequences,* and I’m not personally someone who especially likes spirits, I can’t even find anything that rules that out.

* For personal health, that is. Banning any drug is a gift to mafiosos and drug gangs, which is precisely why even in the worst-case scenario almost anything is better than prohibition.

WestRiverrat's avatar

Drove an hour to Canada. I was legal there.

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