New york does not leave a footprint for alcohol

New york does not leave a footprint for alcohol

drinking alcohol in public? This is not for Americans. Even though that's exactly what they like to do. But they follow very specific rules when doing so, at least if they want to avoid trouble with law enforcement officials. Now read and be amazed, where and how you are allowed to drink alcohol in New York – and what you better put out of your mind.

Drinking is once again heavy in the city's public consciousness right now. These days in New York is finally on all corners and ends Oktoberfest. This shapes the idea of German culture with beer from Bavaria and Brooklyn, polka from Bavaria and the Czech Republic, lederhosen from Bavaria and Taiwan, and traditional sports like whip-wielding and cornhole. Oh, and before you complain about Cornhole, just because it has an English name: You have that too .

Side note: This contest, where you throw bean bags on a slanted wooden board with a hole while the clock is running, only crept into my consciousness during this year's American Oktoberfest season. Finally I understand what makes the cornholio klumauk of "Beavis& Butthead" inspired. "Huh, huh, huh. She's old", they would probably say now.

So. But now back to the essential things: Alcohol. You can only drink this in New York if you're 21 or older, and even then only in designated areas. At home, of course (unless you live in a non-alcoholic community house). And in restaurants that have a liquor license. So inside in these restaurants.

No Go: Take your drink outside

Outside the problems begin. Smokers notice this very quickly when a horrified bartender barks after them. You can't just take a drink out of a bar with you. This is also something to consider for concerts, for example.

"Open container" is the rule in the vernacular: you can carry around as much beer as you want. But a twist of the crown cap (yes, here they can be untwisted! Unless you get some real German beer! Ouch!) or a zzzzzip at the can will put you on the side of the outlaws.

That's why Americans don't drink outside. Well, maybe they do, but if a cop sees them, they get a sober ticket and a fine of at least 25 dollars. According to New York attorney Robert Briere, in 2010, more than 140.000 people get a summons for drinking in public. Court summons! Shockwerenot, this is of course a good way to earn money as a lawyer.

The myth of beer in a paper bag

By the way, for this prohibition it does not matter how the alcohol is packaged. Contrary to the popular belief of many tourists from distant countries (such as Germany), it is a punishable offense to take a sip from the paper bag containing a beer can or liquor bottle. Well, some half-assed guys in US movies and series don't make it legal to look deep into the paper bag. They only hide forbidden actions in a way that makes them even more suspicious.

Now, however, there are restaurants that serve alcohol and have a few seats outside. Outside! But the lawyer is not rubbing his hands with glee. With a clear barrier to the foot traffic on the sidewalk, the restaurant owners stick their flag in the ground: Here, this is actually inside with us! And that works.

No alcohol beyond this point – drinking outside in the corral

At music festivals or the fancy flea markets with food miles, this trick sometimes rather leads to an exclusion of the drinkers: They have to buy their drink at extra stands and stay with it like cattle in a corral, kept in check not by cowboys, but by ubiquitous "No alcohol beyond this point" signs.

My imagination dictates that a group of teetotalers will finally show up, politely thank us for delivering advertising-relevant target groups and hand out brochures. But I have never experienced anything like it.

What I experienced the other day though was … how the exclusion became my personal VIP area. Actually, we only sat outside at the little Italian place because it was crowded inside, and when it's crowded there, it's crazy loud. Outside he has two narrow tables with metal chairs. Right in front of us two guys are repairing a moped. Luckily the electrical parts, the engine doesn't have to run for that. So everything quite cozy.

And then I say "wine" and my companion says "beer". The waiter in turn says "sorry" when he returns. And hooks a thick red cord on two hooks, with which it wraps tightly around us.

New york does not leave a footprint for alcohol

The restaurant may only have a few inches from the sidewalk, the waiter explains, and if someone is drinking there, the restaurant space must be "enclosed," but that same enclosure may not take up any space. No room for alcohol.

We are sorely tempted to bum cigarettes and then smoke them without contortions outside – in front of the restaurant – while drinking inside – behind the cord – at the same time. So that's where the term "going over the top" comes from!

Whether this would have been legal, I doubt. By the way, you don't bum cigarettes in New York either. But that is another topic.

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