My fraternity was holding a joint party with another fraternity. Since the other fraternity was a dry fraternity (that means no alcohol), our house was being used for this little BYOB event. In return, they were going to bring snacks and pay for some soda to quench the thirst of designated drivers. They also brought a large (50 pound) bag of sugar. I had no idea what the sugar was for, and I had worries of my own — despite having relinquished my officer status a few weeks ago, I wanted it all to be perfect.

We had the original intent of making it a room party; unfortunately, having the largest house on campus, everyone clumped up front. So I shut down my stab at wine and cheese. You might think it highbrow; I was simply too lazy to put on my kilt and go for something more barbarous.

In the interest of being interfraternal, I went to where most of the people were. Not long after, one of the guys from the other house asked me if I wanted a "Sugar Shot". Being the booster of the Greek system that I am, I agreed. Instead of a shotglass, I was handed a dixie cup. It was one-third full of granulated sugar. Now, I've experienced more than one sugar high, so that aspect did not concern me. Before doing the shot, I asked where the idea came from.

Apparently, since they couldn't have alcohol in their house, they had to have some other way to demonstrate their party attitude and machismo. I shrugged. How bad, after all, could sugar be? Someone asked for a full cup sugar shot, and everyone said "Oooh." I failed to see what was the big deal.

So I tilted my cup back, and only then was the true horror obvious. The first sensation is of having a lot of somewhat gritty sugar in your mouth. This quickly disappears as your mouth dries out, as your saliva tries to dissolve all the sugar and fails. You try to salivate, and it doesn't really work. Eventually, you manage to choke it down slowly.

As I recovered, the person doing the full-cup shot tilted it back. He wound up coughing, and most of the sugar was on the floor. I couldn't help but marvel at their masochistic streak. Perhaps it was a peculiar lack of forethought that marked the first try of such an idea — their high-end stereo receiver would later be the victim of someone dancing with a drink in their hand. Still, I've drank all sorts of concoctions before and since, but never anything so nasty as that Sugar Shot.

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