Hippo Rants. Dutch beer in F1?!

by The Fat Hippo. Written in association with MISSED APEX F1 PODCAST

Look, my Kenian Sports Car…

… said nobody, ever. You wouldn’t ask an Eskimo for fashion advice on a summer dress and neither would you buy a car that’s designed and nailed together by people who go to work on a Zebra. So why in the name of all that’s holy do people think that anyone with half a brain would buy a beer that’s been whipped up by the Dutch?

I guzzle beer by the gallon. When I die one day, breweries all over the country will fly their flags at half-mast, but never ever in my twenty-five years of beer drinking, have I thought: You know? It’s all jolly well, German Beer Purity Law, six hundred years of tradition and all, but I’d rather drink something that’s made in Holland. I drank Heineken once. That was in 2003 in Mons, Belgium. Since then I know that they’ve managed something unique. They’ve diluted water. It’s absolutely preposterous, although it has one redeeming feature. It’s not quite as terrible as the warm brown stuff with bits of soil in it that the British call beer. But that’s like saying syphilis is not quite as terrible as chlamydia.

And that’s just the quality of the product, or the lack thereof. One has to question the sanity of those who thought it was a good idea to promote alcohol in a sport that involves driving cars really fast. Oh really? Why was tobacco advertising banned if you can legally promote a neurotoxin the consumption of which is responsible for thousands upon thousands of road accidents every year?

I smoke like a chimney and I drink a lot of beer, and that makes me the saviour of our aging society. Before senility can take me to the night or before I even reach retirement age and become a burden to society, I’ll already be pushing the daisies. It’s called sozialverträgliches Frühableben in German, which translates to ‘socially compatible early demise’. But advertising has absolutely nothing to do with that.

If it was for me, when it is suddenly acceptable to advertise booze so prominently, they should bring tobacco sponsors back as well, because it was a stupid idea to ban it in the first place. Sauber wouldn’t have to look for pennies down the back of the sofa every week. To quote the late great George Carlin: Kids don’t smoke because a camel in sunglasses tells them to. I started smoking in 1993, but certainly not because there was Marlboro painted on the McLaren and Penske cars. I started because I was plastered and stupid.

The decision to mess up your lungs or wasting yourself out of your skull is a personal decision, and one that’s hardly influenced by advertising. They may cover all tracks in Heineken logos, but I will still buy my beer from people who know something about it, which means I’ll buy Czech or German beer. Banning advertising is stupid, but so is hypocrisy. If you need to have an ‘official beer of F1’, Bernie, stop being a hypocrite and get an ‘official cigarette of F1’ as well.


The Hippo.