Moderating alcohol level will help river adventures


Dante Frattini


On any hot summer day along the American River in Sacramento, one can witness a mass migration no less miraculous than that of the caribou of Northern Canada.

This phenomenon turns the river yellow, the guys into flexing alpha males and the girls into beaded attention-whores.

Yes, of course I’m referring to the famous summer pastime of floating down the river.

As easy as floating sounds, there’s more to it than just getting drunk on a raft.

Well, at least in my experience.

Let me share with you some of the pitfalls, or should I say “rapids,” you may encounter during your day at the river.

Rule No. 1: moderate your alcohol intake.

This is the most obvious key to keeping everything under control. As many of us know too well, alcohol is often the reason behind unfortunate events, and rarely the reason for triumphant victories.

What’s that you say? You need a personal example of an embarrassing alcohol-fueled happening? Fine. How about being drunk enough to kiss a girl – at least it was a girl – you would otherwise describe as having an “awesome personality.”

I’d give you an example of a “star-aligning-once-in-a-lifetime-can’t-wait-to-text-all-my-buddies” drunken happening, but, uh, this needs to be kept rated-PG and both my girlfriend and parents are readers.

For the most part, the only things found on these rafts are platinum-blonde hair, tribal tattoos and beer. Lots and lots of beer. So it’s hard to do anything but drink constantly, but it’s necessary you pace yourself. At the rate of three beers an hour, you’re looking at downing a 12-pack on the approximately four-hour trip.

That, plus an unavoidable natural force can really escalate things. And not in the good way. In the “Anchorman” Brick-just-killed-a-guy way.

Which brings us to…

Rule No. 2: beware of the sun!

I know I sound like your mom harping about sunscreen and skin cancer, but trust me, that sun will get you. And it’s not just sunburns you need to worry about. Sun, combined with alcohol, on a body of water can be a potentially deadly conversation. Not sarcasm.

For some reason that someone who knows about science can explain to you, the sun acts as a catalyst when it comes to drunkenness. Three beers feel like five. Five feel like ten, and ten feels like bed time.

And that’s when trouble starts to – I’m sorry, I have to – brew.

Rule No. 3: stay awake!

Don’t rest your eyes, don’t take a nap, don’t wander up the river bank, don’t pee behind bushes even though there’s people behind those bushes and don’t lay down on burning hot rocks and fall asleep.

Some people may see that as a warning sign and make a few phone calls that will lead to spending 12 hours shirtless and shoeless in a holding cell with 35 guys that have neck tattoos.

Now,this likely won’t happen to you as long as you have a friend or two watching out for you. But in the event that your friends sorta forget about you, finish their cold Taco Bell and continue down the river without you, you’ll want to be as in-control as possible.

Also, don’t litter. Beause that’s just irresponsible.