My friend Cior sent me a link to a talk at the Web 2.0 conference in San Francisco by Clay Shirky, because the talk referenced gin. (My friends know me well.) The talk was about how we dissipate the free time and mental energy ("cognitive surplus") we have after working. In the beginning of the industrial revolution when the masses streamed into London, Shirky says consumption of gin was the way of dealing with the new pressures of city living. Post WWII, television became the new post-work brain relaxer, and nowadays, collaborative web projects like Wikipedia are a productive way to spend those mental energy cycles.
So really, the talk isn't booze-related at all. But after reading it, I could use a nice relaxing martini.
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Camper English is a cocktails and spirits writer for publications including Saveur (Contributing Drinks Editor), Details.com (Cocktail Columnist), FSR Magazine (Spirits Editor), Whisky Advocate, PopSci.com, Mixology, Drinks International, and many more. Learn about Camper and Alcademics, or read clips of his published work.