A Taxonomy of Beer Drinkers

The Hardcore Gamer


The Hardcore Gamer goes to the bar for three reasons: to chug brews, to kick ass and to play surprisingly complicated drinking games she kinda remembers from her university days. The Hardcore Gamer’s enthusiasm for beer is matched only by her fiery competitiveness and her inability to recall most of the games’ rules. Still, she never forgets their names, and she never stops pestering the rest of the group to play F*ck the Dealer or Presidents and Assholes or some other whimsical euphemism for binge drinking.



Protests of ‘I’d really prefer to drink my beer in peace’ are generally ignored by the Hardcore Gamer. If a deck of cards is present, she will insist on using it for an insanely difficult competition that requires participants to have a mastery of Euler’s Formula of complex analysis and the ability to repeat novella-length incantations from memory. She rarely knows how to shuffle.


The Reluctant Gourmand


The Reluctant Gourmand usually doesn’t drink beer. He doesn’t like the taste, and he finds beer to be too filling. He’d much rather have a gin-tonic or a nice Merlot, but since his friends have chosen a beer-only establishment and/or bought the current round of drinks, he’s forced to feign enthusiasm for his mealy mug of peasant-water.


The Reluctant Gourmand is never pleased by this, and reminds his companions of that fact repeatedly. Would it have been that hard to pick a spot with a decent cocktail menu, or to not be such a cheap bastard once in a while? The Reluctant Gourmand certainly doesn’t think so, and he resents being surrounded by cultural barbarians every time he goes out on the town. He’ll finish his beer, oh, he’ll finish it, damn your oily hides, but every grim-faced swallow will be recorded at length later that night as he sits in his parlour room, writing in his calfskin diary with a goose-quill pen while sipping from a decanter of 16-year-old Lagavulin. 


The Tactile Fixationist


The Tactile Fixationist just likes to have a beer in his hand, man. It’s not that he even drinks that much, but he’s gotta have something to hold on to, you know? He’d feel weird being at a bar, dinner party or kindergarten choir recital without a beer clenched in each fist like an aluminum life rope. He hasn’t really had that many, even; you just always seem to catch him right after he grabbed a new one.


The Tactile Fixationist will occasionally relinquish his grip on his beer to play a round of darts, but his performance is often impaired by the lack of simultaneous alcohol consumption and he usually acts swiftly to rectify this. Predictably, the Tactile Fixationist is a frequent visitor to the restroom after a certain point in the festivities, where everybody just hopes he puts his beer down long enough to wash his goddamn hands.


The Wistful Gazer


The Wistful Gazer has deep thoughts. Usually these thoughts come to her after the seventh or eighth beer of the night, when she finally begins to see things clearly. The epiphanies of the Wistful Gazer vary in content — some nights she may realise that a coworker really isn’t all that much smarter or more qualified than her, on others she might at last understand that an ex-partner wasn’t even worth the heartache.


Her visions are often challenging to decipher for the outsider, due to Wistful Gazer’s tendency to speak in tongues, but sometimes the planets align and two Wistful Gazers find themselves in the midst of a beatific drunken mind-meld. It is usually best to avoid pairs of Wistful Gazers at moments like this because what they’re talking about is really none of your f’ing business, even if their conversation is being screamed at Robert Plantian volumes. 




God, you hate cheap gimmicky stunts like A Taxonomy of Beer Drinkers. It reminds you of those lame Internet questionnaires that ask ‘Which cast member of the Simpsons are YOU?’ or ‘What’s your REAL mitochondrial age?’ Sure, you’ll have a beer if you feel like it, but you don’t need to define yourself by your drinking preferences.


Maybe tonight you’ll have an oatmeal stout with dinner, or maybe you’ll have a chocolate martini instead. You are vast; you contain multitudes. You know that it’s ridiculous to suggest that the fact a person enjoys amber ales instead of dunkelweizens says anything significant about his or her personality. You see this list for what it is — a lazy pandering to hordes of bovine-eyed commoners desperate for any chance to categorise themselves under an archetype so as not to feel so hopelessly alone in the world. That’s why you’re you. Beautiful, beautiful you. — Niko Savvas



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