Possums don’t ply themselves with booze to demonstrate how gravity works

Are possums higher up the order than me?

Boozing buffoons down south are giving a splendid demonstration of why the drinking age should be raised to 24 or higher because – until then – they are unfit to be regarded as adults.

They are also giving possums a bad name.

Alf’s attention has been drawn to their antics by the NZ Herald, which reports them here.

We learn of concerns being expressed by staff at Dunedin’s Botanic Garden about the growing popularity of a drinking game called “possum”.

Alf’s hackles rise whenever he hears of people playing drinking games, because he takes his drinking seriously.

The Good Lord did not give us booze to be used as a plaything. He gave us booze to foster conviviality and bonhomie, and (when Jesus turned water into wine) to wash down the fish at lunch.

St Peter is bound to have been instructed to record the names of each of those who are playing this Possum game in Dunedin.

And when they turn up at the Pearly Gates, which in their cases is likely to be much sooner than later, they will be advised they do not pass muster and must go to The Other Place.

This game, you see, requires participants to sit in trees (something apes, chimps and what-have-you are conditioned to do) and drink large amounts of alcohol (something the lower-order primates do not do).

According to the website Urban Dictionary, “possum” is a “drinking game in which players have to sit in a tree, like possums, and consume a pack of 24 beers … until they fall out of the tree from drunkenness”.

Dunedin City Council gardens and cemeteries team leader Alan Matchett said staff first encountered people – believed to be mainly students – playing the game about four years ago.

Since then it had increased in popularity to the point where it was “not uncommon” for gardens staff or security guards to have to chase away people who were playing the game.

If Matchett has been advised correctly on the matter, a number of people climb a single tree, taking with them large amounts of alcohol and sometimes food.

He is concerned that food scraps, broken bottles and vomit are often left behind.

And he is concerned about the effects of the possum game on other users of the gardens.

“Having loud voices, swearing, urinating and all that sort of thing going on really isn’t part of what the gardens is about,” Mr Matchett said.

Staff were also concerned about the damage that could be caused to trees, some of which were classed as heritage trees and were more than 100 years old.

Fair to say, Matchett is also worried about the potential for someone to get injured falling from a tree (staff have not yet encountered anyone who has been injured in this way).

Alf advises him to continue to harbour concerns about the effects of the possum game on other citizens.

But he should not get too bothered about the buggers hurting themselves.

If they broke a few bones and were disabled for a while, they would be doing the rest of humanity a favour while they were out of action.

They would do the rest of humanity a much bigger favour if they fell to their deaths and thus ensured their faulty genes and intellectual enfeeblement were not passed on to a new generation of tossers.

Come to think of it, Alf is willing to help out the Botanic Gardens staff by offering his services as a possum exterminator.

If the booze doesn’t have them dropping from their perches, you can be sure a shot between their eyes will do the trick.

Alf is confident pest eradication can be carried out without his having to worry about what the police or other legal authorities might think.

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