which has taken on semi-legendary
status within the Society for Creative Anachronism
. It is a pale pink drink--the surprise is that there aren't any strawberries in it. It's actually Kentucky moonshine
flavored with pepper spray
. The creator, a man who goes by the name Johann Kinslayer
, claims that he wears a gas mask
, that the drink is 12% capiscum oil, and that the alcohol he uses is 198 proof
. I won't guarantee that he isn't exaggerating a bit, but:
At the annual Pennsic War, people come to get Strawberry Surprise at Johann's camp. Anyone who affirms that they have no history of heart or digestive trouble is given a dose of a shot, adjusted up or down based on body weight. Anyone who takes a shot gets a black cloth printed with a strawberry that, on closer examination, is also a flaming skull; those people who avoid vomiting for 30 minutes (about half the people who try it) have a chain added to theirs.
I've seen people drink this, and the effect is undeniable. Strong men collapse; people who think they're brave end up writhing in agony in the dirt. Johann might be exaggerating, but when you see people screaming, "oh my God! The pain! The pain!" it becomes relatively easy to believe his stories. I once had a shot from a bottle made of 1 part Strawberry Surprise and 999 parts scotch--it was drinkable, but left me with a hot-pepper taste in my mouth and a burn that was several times stronger than the usual scotch feeling.