It’s Okoberfest, and there’s a helluva lot of drinkin’ goin’ on.
First, a video that nicely captures the spirit[s] of the festivites from vlogger iamdelaney featuring the music of Skrillex and their song Bangarang:
Spiegel has the numbers, including the Bierleichen body count:
The first week of this year’s Oktoberfest is over, and as ever, the half-time statistics are almost as overpowering as the high-octane Munich beer served in the tents.
A clear picture is already emerging: there are more visitors, and they’re drinking a lot more beer, and that is having predictable consequences.
The number of Bierleichen, or “beer corpses” — a term referring to people who have drunk themselves into a state of unconsciousness — jumped by almost 20 percent to 445, most of them aged 30 or under, according to the Red Cross.
Visitor numbers to the famous folk festival have increased to 3.6 million from 3.5 million at the same time last year, thanks to sunnier weather, the organizers said. And the all-important statistic — the number of one-liter Mass glasses of beer guzzled — rose by almost six percent to 3.6 million, up from 3.4 million last year, the Bavarian capital of Munich said on Sunday.
At this rate, the festival could top last year’s all-time record beer consumption of 7.5 million liters — which would be an impressive feat given that the 2012 Oktoberfest has a fifth less space than usual due to an adjacent agricultural fair which ended on Sunday.
One suspects that a good part of that increase in consumption falls into the category of dancing in the face of the economic storm.
And a journalist’s brush with Oktoberfest fame
The first time we ever became, fleetingly, an international media celebrity was back in 1979, and Oktoberfest was the reason.
Our newspaper, the late, great Santa Monica Evening Outlook, has published a UPI photo showing Polanski surrounded by beautiful women seated at an Oktoberfest table in Munich.
When the judge overseeing the prosecution of the famous director on sec crimes charges involving a 13-year-old model saw the photo on Sunday’s front page, he erupted, because he’d allowed Polanski to travel to Europe only to seek funding for a new feature film.
At issue was the caption, supplied by the wire service, declaring Polanski had come to Munch solely for fun.
When we walked into the office Monday morning, we were met by Polanski’s attorney with a subpoena, compelling our testimony about the origins of the caption. We did some digging and found out the “just for fun” quote came not from the director but from a hotel desk clerk who hadn’t ever talked to Polanski.
Our testimony helped keep the director out of the jail cell where the judge had intended to send him pending the trial.
We were briefly featured on network news that night as we walked out of the courtroom and into a forest of microphones, and in countless news stories in papers around the world.
By the following day the newspaper stories were fishwrap and and the newscasts fleeting memories.