Everything old is new again
Remember absinthe? The stuff that drove addicts ‘mad’ and was banned for a century?
Well, it’s coming to a teen party near you.
While absinthe’s psychoactive perils may have been overplayed, any drink that packs up to 74% alcohol by volume is not for kids.
Absinthe is ferociously potent for young people new to drinking.
For that very reason, it’s becoming extremely popular on the party scene.
The other night, despite the best efforts of parents and helpers alike, one young woman met her match with absinthe.
This 18-year-old (let’s call her Kylie) arrived at the party I was monitoring from a prior school formal.
Fifteen minutes before entering the party, she sculled a couple of drinks.
As this grog hadn’t kicked in by the time she fronted our controlled-alcohol-serving bar (twice), Kylie didn’t manifest the intoxication symptoms my security team and I look out for.
Now fully primed, Kylie sat down near the dark dancing area.
There she decided she wanted another drink, but didn’t want to go to our bar to get it.
So she sculled a friend’s drink instead.
Unfortunately for Kylie, this contained a shot of absinthe – enough to send her over the edge.
Shot to hell
It didn’t take long for Kylie to feel sick. Very sick.
So we called her mother, who’d spent most of the night worrying about her decision to let Kylie attend her first ‘grown-up’ party.
Imagine Mum’s reaction when, on parking her car, she saw her child being carried towards her by security staff and friends.
By this time, Kylie was emotional but unresponsive – so far gone that I thought she may have added another drug to the mix.
So I advised her mum to take her to emergency and have her examined.
As it turned out, the drama was all due to alcohol – capped by the absinthe.
Kylie learnt a painful lesson.
Not all kids are so lucky.
That’s why we must take even greater care of ours.
Naomi Oakley, Founder, Safe Partying Australia.